I hope you had the best weekend! I finally finished cleaning out my closet haha! I’ve been doing it little by little for the past few weeks and literally got rid of half of it. It was al most like moving day lol!
Today, I have another installment of the Girl Boss series. I’m interviewing Adaleta from the blog, Adaatude. I’ve been following Ada on Instagram for a few years and it’s been really neat to watch her flourish to just over half a million followers. She is a girl boss by definition and it’s easy to tell that she has an insane work ethic, especially with full time outside the blog. Read more about her journey below!
Tell us about yourself:
My name’s Adaleta but everyone started calling me Ada for short (add-ugh). I’m originally from Bosnia, and came to the US when I was 5 years old due to the genocide and unrest in Yugoslavia in the early 90s. I lived in Philadelphia for a couple of years, until my dad’s job moved us to LA. I’m a total west coast girl, and spent the majority of my life in Redondo Beach (South Bay what’s up!) After I graduated from high school, I wanted to go to the University of Arizona. Right before I graduated, I started a new career and met my now fiancé, so naturally I’ve stayed in Tucson since 2009. I love to socialize, especially online but I also like to run. When I originally made my username online, I was quite sassy (even more so now!) so adaatude was a fun & natural fit for my online life!
How do you balance a full-time job with your blog?
The only way everything gets done is having a team. On the blog front, I have an extensive amount of help. My philosophy has always been to find an expert in whatever field or work I need help in – whether that’s management, social media, photography, videography, and so forth. Find the expert, and I truly feel that I have found the best people who support my work, and make it so much better.
How has your blog evolved since you first began?
I originally started my blog in 2013 as part of a senior college project – the project required the writing of ten blog posts about one specific topic. Back then I was very intrigued by the electronic dance music scene, and I started my blog writing about events, outfits and proper care for dancing all night. Once I began my corporate job, I added in travel and started buying a lot of makeup to try. With the makeup binges, I would review the products and tell my blog readers what was worth it, and what simply should not be purchased. This is how I became labeled as a beauty blogger. Fast forward a few years, and much of my content is fashion with a sprinkle of life advice, food, wine and lots of craft beer. I’m now working to add in fitness because I am training for a marathon. It went from an electronic dance music blog, to a lifestyle blog all about my life and the things I love.
What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced with blogging and how did you overcome it?
My biggest challenge has been getting people to read the blog. While social media can help get people to the blog, I haven’t been the most savvy with SEO (search engine marketing) to ensure people come back to my blog overtime. I’m trying to push more people to my blog by incorporating swipe up features and then also mentioning other bloggers in posts.
What are some common misconceptions about blogging?
I wrote about how to start a blog back in the day. There’s so much to cover. The older generations think we just “play” on Facebook all day. Always makes me laugh when my friends’ parents say “how do you make money being on Facebook all day?” That’s not the case, and it’s not being on Facebook all day. If anything, I barely touch Facebook. Many people think we’re just on social media posting pretty photos and sitting on our butt. If they only knew that we’re usually the creative producer, creative director, photo editor, stylist, makeup artist, hair wizard, and sometimes we EVEN take our OWN photos… well that’s impressive. Imagine how a professional photo shoot goes for Maybelline. There’s 20 people (at least) prepping the model for the photos. Take that entire scene and imagine 1-2 people doing everything. Makes it a lot harder to envision right? But that’s what bloggers do. None of us started with professional teams, photographers, videographers, and so forth. We all started on our own, likely with an iPhone. Making it as a blogger is ridiculously hard.
What is your favorite and least favorite thing about blogging?
Making new friends and interacting with people from ALL over the world. I met one of my best friends today through blogging! On the flip-side, my least favorite thing is the cattiness and cliques. There’s definitely a lot of cliques throughout the digital space, and it’s just not something I’m a fan of. Some bloggers think they’re better because they make a lot of money via RewardStyle. Others thing they’re better because they only speak about luxury brands. The list goes on and on, and I do not like that element of it. Bloggers were all the NICEST 6 years ago. Now that the space is so saturated, you have the bad seeds who think they should be treated like divas, and I cannot stand that mentality. Get a grip!
How do you keep up with all the changes in the digital space?
I’m a huge fan of change, and I stalk Instagram’s latest changes and additions like a hawk. It’s so important to understand what new features are happening at any given time. IGTV was a big one that is likely going to change the game, and give us ANOTHER outlet to actually monetize Instagram. With the changes, you have to be crafty and that’s one of the reasons I like change because it requires thinking strategically and creatively to figure out the best way to add the new feature into your brand’s marketing.
Can you give us a peek into what a typical day is like?
My days are absolutely crazy because I work a 9-5 and I also do the blog and social professionally.
5-6 AM: In order to get a run in (did I mention I’m training for a marathon?) Since it’s hot in Arizona, I have to get that run in, so I get up early to get the miles done.
8 AM: Make a smoothie and then take a shower
9 AM: Drive to the corporate job & work for several hours. Answer emails, jump on calls, etc.
12 PM: Eat lunch or go to Whole Foods to grab something quick
Afternoon: Check in on blog needs (message and email with my social media manager; check on my to do list) & then switch back to corporate job needs.
4-5 PM: Head home; check the PO box on the way home.
6-8 PM: Make dinner & enjoy it
8-10 PM: Watch Netflix with Aaron & work on blog posts and next few social media posts.
10 PM-midnight: Fall asleep at some time once the work seems to be done for the day.
It’s a crazy back to back day normally, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
What is a common thing you see new bloggers doing that could prevent them from building their online presence?
New bloggers are accepting any and all PR samples in exchange for coverage. This does not help our industry as a whole because brands then decide to gift product rather than pay influencers. If they can get 100 “new” bloggers to post for free and get them 10,000+ consumers to see their product, then why would they pay larger influencers? The method of giving product in exchange for coverage is something that definitely needs to end, but it is a double edged sword. You want to remain authentic and try products from brands, but having to do 3-5 posts for a free watch is a brand genuinely taking advantage of the blogger. Time is money, and if you’re not spending time with your friends and family to write an unpaid post, it seems less productive for both your career and the industry as a whole.
What advice do you have about remaining authentic in the digital space?
Don’t sell out. I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve gotten awesome offers for amounts of money I would have loved to make, but at the end of the day, your influence is only as good as your honest opinion. A audience gravitates to a specific person because there’s a connection of some kind. Whatever that connection is, lying to your audience that something is amazing and works for you (when in fact it actually sucks OR you’ve never tried it) is so disgenuine and will come across as such. Stay honest and authentic in the space.
The other thing swarming around the industry is this idea of fake influence. Don’t succumb yourself to the pressure of buying followers from a sketchy website. If all of a sudden, you have 100,000 followers overnight (and you didn’t go viral) people are going to be suspicious, and surprisingly the industry is extremely small. People will talk, and you’re going to receive less emails and calls to discuss collaborations. It’s the name of the game. I’m a big advocate for giveaways (I love to give back to my audience and have a truly personal connection because I am just another person) but buying followers from sites is not the way to stay true and authentic in the space.
What advice would you give to those wanting to start a blog?
Don’t do it to become famous overnight, and definitely don’t do it for the money. You won’t be making money in the beginning. It’s near impossible to make money if you don’t have an audience because the idea of influence is having people to influence. A lot of people ask me how to make a living before they even have a blog, and it’s just not how it works. Start a blog because you want to connect with people online, and because you’re passionate about specific topics.
Words to live by:
If you want to make the most use of your time, make sure to do things you’re passionate about on a daily basis. There’s no better way to be happy, and never work a day in your life.
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