How I balance blogging and working 40 hours a week
One topic that I find myself discussing with other bloggers, or friends that are wanting to give this whole influencing thing a try is the struggle to find the time to be consistent. I am by no means and expert on this. I too am still finding new ways to balance it all, but I wanted to share a few tips and tricks that has helped me this past year!
1) SCHEDULE time in your week to create content.
With any goal you want to reach, you have to make the TIME to take the steps to accomplish it. Although I started ErinLynnStyle just for fun (and it is fun), I treat it like a job and not a hobby. Each week I dedicate one of my days off to batching my content for the week. I already have all the outfits I want to shoot planned out along with potential locations. I use to try and shoot on my lunch breaks and each day after work, but that became exhausting. Batching my content has been such a game changer, and has allowed me to produce better quality content because I'm not so rushed. I also want to note that being consistent does not mean you have to post EVERY day. If all you can commit to is two post a week, that is fine. Your followers will be fine with whatever you choose, just as long as you keep showing up on a consistent schedule. People will not trust and engage with someone they can not rely on, so making one post and then going weeks before your next is only doing a disservice to yourself and your brand.
2) Get familiar with shooting and editing your own content.
Now I'm not saying you need to shoot everything yourself or not to work with a photographer, but I don't think you should always rely on someone else to produce your content. I would never skip a week of shooting because I couldn't find someone who could take my picture and work around my work schedule, and neither should you. Think about if you were going on vacation. You would want to document that trip for social, right? Are you going to fly your photographer out with you? Probably not. This is a great example of why you should still be able to produce great quality content on your own, and you can stay consistent.
I personally shoot on my Iphone with this tripod, but you do what works for you. Remember, people relate to "authentic" and candid photos, so do not stress yourself out with having super polished photos ALL of the time.
3) Automate your post.
This is probably my favorite tip to offer. Since I work retail, my schedule varies day to day and week to week. Most people have a specific time of day they post depending upon when they get the most engagement which makes this type of work schedule very challenging. This past year I also ran into the problem where brands were asking me to post during a specific time frame, and I couldn't tell them it conflicted with my job. I needed to find a solution, and that solution is the FREE app called Planoly.
Planoly allows me to schedule out ALL of my post for the week and it automatically post to Instagram for me. Now if I'm working a closing shift, I do not have to stress about missing my normal 7pm posting time. The app also allows you to automate your IGstories for a fee, but I personally don't have a need for this yet.
4) Time to engage with your audience.
I have found that this is what people struggle with the most. If you are just starting out, you will quickly realize that if you want to grow you have to engage with others. You have already put in so much effort to create a great feed/post, you don't want to drop the ball bu not driving traffic to it. Ideally you want to engage right before or right after you post, but that might not be realistic with your schedule which is ok! This one goes back to scheduling and planning out the time in your day that you are going to commit to engaging.with others. No one wants to be glued to their phone, and you don't have to be. You can approach this is one of two ways. Either set aside some time each day dedicated to strictly engaging OR stop being a silent follower. We are all already on Instagram, so instead of mindlessly scrolling...actually take the time to engage with the post you like! This requires no extra time out of your day and not only will the account you are engaging with appreciate it...they will most likely reciprocate the love on your page. You'll most likely end up connecting and making friends with some really cool people too! My favorite times to engage are on my lunch break, when I get home from work (I'm still in work mode so it's easy to dedicate some time before unwind), or right before bed.
So to sum it all up, this is what a week posting on IG looks like for me:
1) Choose one of your days off to shoot/edit all your content.
2) Once it's edited, upload all your pictures to Planoly (or other app of your choice) and select time and date for the post to go LIVE. (No more time or effort required to get those post up for the rest of the week!)
3) While I'm ALREADY scrolling through Instagram, I'm also actively engaging with others. I also take about 15 minutes either after work or before bed to engage with new accounts.
You can achieve anything you want to, you just have to make the COMMITMENT to yourself to make the TIME and PLAN, PLAN, PLAN. How much time you are able to set aside is going to look different for everyone, but just as long as you are CONSISTENT you will see the positive results!
As always feel free to DM me anytime and feel free to leave a comment on my page. I would love to know what tips you all have for balancing work and blogging!