As a working mom of four and rockstar influencer, Stefanie of Lexie Loo, Lily, Liam & Dylan Too, sat down with us (virtually) to explain what inspires her and what informs and drives the content that she shares with her readers. We love Stefanie for her ability to deliver content that helps connect us with others and their experiences, her professionalism and her sharp influencer marketing insights — and that’s why we’re featuring her as our April Spotlight Blogger!
Here’s what we heard from Stefanie on topics ranging from working with brands to answering her readers’ questions:
What do you feel is the #1 trend for influencer marketing in 2017?
Incorporating Facebook Live more frequently. Many people, including myself, don’t feel comfortable with Facebook Live just yet, but it’s a growing trend that brands seem to favor!
What content do you feel your readers find most valuable?
I’m a mom to four kids, and many of my readers have children, too. Any content related to parenthood or kids always does well on my blog. Moms love to discover great new products, recipes and ideas!
What are your thoughts on working with a brand on multiple occasions (vs. one-off programs)?
I’ve worked with several brands on multiple occasions, and our professional relationship gets stronger with each program/campaign. If a brand asks a blogger to work with them again, it means they valued the work the blogger did for them previously, and that definitely says a lot! When I work with a brand repeatedly, I feel like my content is more authentic each time.
What are your thoughts on programs measured by initial click-through rates?
At first, I was a big fan of click campaigns, but after about a year, I realized it was turning readers away. Honestly, they can be a bit too stressful for me. I’m always worried about reaching my quota, and after a while, it feels like I’m spamming my followers with the same tweets and Facebook posts. Over the past few months, I cut back on click campaigns, and focused on working with brands that just want a thorough review. It’s a much more positive experience for me!
What is your favorite space to engage with your readers?
I take a LOT of pictures, so Instagram is my favorite platform! I love to get a little glimpse into the everyday lives of some of my favorite bloggers. I’m also introduced to a lot of amazing products on Instagram!
Where do you find inspiration for new blog posts?
I come up with most of my ideas after speaking to other moms! Listening to their struggles and wishes can really help form content that can be helpful to many others who feel the same way.
What advice would you give to someone thinking of starting a blog?
Do it for yourself and stay authentic! Always remember why you started your blog. Making money is a bonus of blogging, but creating meaningful content and remaining true to yourself should be the most important thing!
Tell us why you blog.
I’ve been blogging for eight and a half years! I originally started my blog to journal my life with my first two children. It was a way to document our days and keep family members who lived far away involved in our lives. At that time, blogging was strictly for journaling and socializing with other bloggers. It wasn’t until the past few years that blogging became more of a business! I’m not going to lie. There are times when I miss how blogging used to be, but just like everything else in life, it was time to progress. Even though I now offer more sponsored content, I don’t believe I should be a walking advertisement. I try to balance out my blog content by posting one real life post for every sponsored post. I never want to lose sight of why I started my blog in the first place: Sharing my life with my kids and socializing with other bloggers!
Favorite program you’ve done with The Motherhood?
I absolutely loved working with Chick-fil-A! I partnered with them for three programs, and it was an amazing experience each time. It’s definitely a brand I feel passionate about, so creating authentic content was very easy for me!
Where do you see the most engagement with your content?
My engagement tends to be very strong on my blog and on Instagram. Pinterest, however, brings the most traffic to my blog! I always make sure I have a graphic that can be pinned with each post.
What’s the #1 question you’re asked by your readers, and what’s your answer?
Three and a half years ago, I gave birth to my fourth son, and he was diagnosed with Down syndrome shortly after birth. All of the tests and ultrasounds were normal, so we had no idea! I get several emails each week from my readers asking questions about the diagnosis, how it could possibly happen and about life with Down syndrome. I’m not strictly a Down syndrome blogger, but I never mind answering questions that people have. That’s how people learn, and open conversation helps break all the misconceptions there are about Down syndrome.
What are brands doing right when working with bloggers?
The majority of brands are amazing to work with! They realize that bloggers and social media influencers are valuable, and they work hard to establish a strong, professional relationship. Most brands are very generous, and even the smaller brands, who can’t afford to compensate financially, tend to be generous with the products they send for review. Brands work really hard to make programs and campaigns a success, and it’s often a very positive experience for everyone involved!
What should brands start doing (better) when working with bloggers?
Over the past year, I was approached by several big brands who wanted a blog post, but offered absolutely nothing in return. While most brands are very generous to bloggers, there are some brands that need to realize that blogging is a job. Nobody wants to work without compensation of some kind. It takes thought and time to craft a thorough post, and our work is valuable!
More about The Motherhood’s Spotlight Blogger Series
Each month, our internal team convenes and discusses our latest programs, stellar partnerships and top influencers. It’s not about numbers, but rather, the quality, authentic content they’re delivering consistently. It’s about reliability, professionalism and partnership. We discuss our nominations for the month and ultimately decide on just one blogger to feature.
Take a look at our other featured influencers here, and stop by in May for the next Spotlight Blogger!