Olivia White, the mastermind behind the House of White blog, knew that returning to the workplace in a traditional capacity after having a child was going to be difficult.
There weren’t just a lack of jobs but there was also the crippling childcare costs to contend with.
Olivia decided to go an unconventional route, utilising her PR and marketing background to build something she could control.
Growing your social media
Olivia started a blog and social media profile whilst on maternity leave, a creative endeavour that has well and truly paid off.
“It was essentially just a hobby when I started and then it became a full time job that has allowed me to work with flexibility and provide amazing opportunity for my family,” Olivia said.
Olivia was able to grow her social media influencer status by utilising three specific strategies:
1) Don’t be Ordinary
A key component to growing an audience on social media and online is to think outside the box, Olivia says.
“I have been very fortunate to grow my following from articles and posts going viral across media outlets all over the world. Don’t be afraid to get yourself out there.”
2) Work With People
You can get somewhere yourself but you can get a lot further with the help of other people.
“Collaborate!” Olivia says. “Working with other people is another great way to build your followership.”
3) Be Engaging
Making sure your content is engaging is essential.
“Know your platforms,” Olivia says. “Know what works well, create original and engaging content accordingly.”
Influencer collaboration: working with brands and getting it right
Olivia’s blog, House of White, sits in a specific niche in the parenting/lifestyle space meaning the brands she works and aligns herself with have particular importance.
“You need to be both proactive and reactive to opportunities to make sure you are working with brands that fit the bill perfectly. Look at everything a a business decision. What do you get from this? What does the brand get? Make sure there is clear and concise direction from both sides on what will be delivered,” Olivia said.
For Olivia, the social media world and the rise of influencer marketing has provided her with many opportunities both personal and professional.
“It’s opened up a whole new world. Having endless reach to people means that within the blink of an eye your message can be shared around the world. This has lead to some amazing business opportunities for us.
We’ve worked with household name brands, brands who were a bucket list even just a year ago we’ve now secured long term partnerships and ambassadorships with. We’ve even just wrapped filming a TV show with Grand and Chezzi Denyer,” Olivia said.
Influencer marketing: navigating finances in commercial partnerships
Commercial partnerships, Olivia says, can be difficult to navigate. Especially when payment comes around. She says theright.fit ‘request for payment‘ feature is enormously helpful when navigating financial arrangements with clients.
“I’ve certainly taken a long time to receive payments and had to send some firm letters of demand. It’s a huge problem in the industry. Have a third party to advocate on you behalf is a HUGE help. Having a specific feature for this is even better.”
Connecting on social media: building a community
Social media can get a bad wrap. It’s often criticised as being the cause of anti-social behaviour.
But Olivia doesn’t see social media this way. For her, it’s a place where people can come together.
“For me personally, my social media has been a key element in reducing the feeling of isolation and loneliness that can so often come in early motherhood.
It has allowed me to share my journey and connect with people going through the same thing. I’m not sure if this is unique to my situation and niche, but I think it is an amazing resource, and being able to turn it into a job is just a silver lining.”
Although there are benefits to engaging with people online, Olivia believes that balance is still important. Everything in moderation.
“As social media evolves, we need to evolve with it and not loose touch with reality. I do believe you can create a community online, but also many of the friendships I’ve forged through social media have then transpired into the real world – and you can never beat that!”
Adapting to the changes in the digital world
The digital world is a fast-paced beast that is always changing and developing. For some, these changes are impossible to keep up with.
Olivia says being able to adapt to these shifts in the digital world is essential.
“Keeping up to date with technology, platform changes and updates and legislation effecting it is vital. You need to be aware of the tools you are using, and make sure you are using them effectively and correctly. You need to work smarter, not harder.
I know it’s good practice to have specific goals, but I honestly have found that the fast paced nature and unknown of social influencing has meant I have been #wingingit a lot. And it has worked for me so far. Because of the fickle nature of it all, I have tried to branch out into other things in case it is unsustainable. If nothing else I think it is a good resume to working somewhere within the industry.”
People to follow on social media
When we asked Olivia who she likes to follow on social media she struggled to sort through her favourites. She settled on the five below because of their beautifully engaging content, their raw and honest post or total belly laughs:
Instagram, she says, is by far her favourite platform.
“It’s visual, much like me! I also understand the platform and know what works for me. Second to that it would be Snapchat, because I can filter my face!”
You can find out more about Olivia by checking out:
Her profile here