One of the ShoeTease-affiliated questions I get asked most often is why I started a shoe blog. Specifically, what drew me to blogging and why the heck I focused in on shoes in particular. Although the initial response to the question is quite simple, the reason why I continued, or better yet continue to blog about shoes, is a liiiiittle more drawn out!
Why I Started a Shoe Blog
When I quit my treacherous job as a footwear designer at a soul-less fast fashion company, one particularly great takeaway was a newfound set of Adobe Illustrator skills. So I decided to apply my acquired computer graphics abilities to illustrate elaborate shoes on t-shirts. If someone couldn’t afford expensive shoes, no problem. I had a t-shirt for that!
Which answers my second most asked question: how I came up with my blog name. It started from “Shoe+Tshirts” to “Shoe+Tees”, and eventually progressed to “Shoe+Tease”. Yep, that’s how “ShoeTease” was born. And no, I wasn’t really bothered with the connotation “tease” may have in the long run! But I digress…
Before starting it all, I ploughed through many a book about e-commerce, small business building & online marketing. The most notable piece of advice across all literature was the importance of blogging to promote one’s brand. So I picked up the highly recommended Problogger (a great read to anyone thinking of starting a blog with lots of info that still applies today) and set up a blog & affiliated social media profiles to begin promoting my shoe designs.
And although my t-shirt shoe art, (which I also ended up applying to mugs, mouse pads & the like) faired pretty well, a few months later, my thirst for blogging soon surpassed my interest in creating shoe graphics & shoe slogans. (The most popular of the latter, if you’re interested at all, was Friends Don’t Let Friends Wear UGGs: a motto I still live by)!
Oh, and in the interest of shameless self-promotion, I’ve started to sell them again in my Zazzle shop 😉
So I eventually decided to roll with what interested me most & focus in on shoe blogging vs. shoe t-shirt blogging. The blog was gaining more traction, anyhow! This resulted in reaching some great traffic quite fast & in a few amazing collabs and sponsorships.
And then I kind of quit blogging.
People who don’t blog have no idea what kind of time suck blogging can actually be. Not to mention how much you have to work at it. From learning about the blogging platform you’re working on, to writing & optimizing one’s content, to honing your photography skills (or finding someone else to take pics for you!) these are just a few blogger responsibilities.
And that’s not mentioning all the social media marketing & haggling with PR companies we have to deal it. The last one, definitely the worst! Of course, more often than not, the results can be financially lacklustre. Especially since more and more brands (yep, even today) think that mere product is fair payment for our work (a whole can or worms I don’t particularly feel like opening today!).
Yep, there are pros and cons about writing a shoe blog, but after a while I decided the positive aspects outweighed the bad. And I was back.
So why, 6 years later, am I still blogging about shoes?
The funny thing is, I often ask myself the same question. But the simple answer is: even though I’ve deviated from the daily stiletto-wearing lifestyle and have zero time (or energy) for schmoozing at media events, I do love blogging and am still very much in love with shoes. Although, working at my desk all day, I usually remain shoe-less. No, the irony isn’t lost on me 😉
I also want to continue blogging because many skills & opportunities have come and continue to come my way thanks to it. I mean, if I hadn’t (sometimes reluctantly) taught myself about online marketing, specifically SEO, I wouldn’t be consulting on the very subject. Without it, I wouldn’t have a platform to test certain marketing theories & showcase concrete results to potential clients. And most importantly, I wouldn’t have an audience to market the shoe accessory I’m currently developing (so stay tuned for that!).
So I might not know how long I’ll keep plugging away here at ShoeTease, but since I’ve just renewed my hosting for yet another year, you’re definitely stuck with me for 12 more months 😉
Are you a blogger? What motivated you to dive in?