Episode 149: How To Use Your Blog to Create Connections, with Julianne Smith - the Creative Empire podcast

In this Creative Empire podcast episode Reina and Christina chat with Julianne Smith, founder of The Garter Girl. The Garter Girl is a stylish wedding garter design company that began in 2004. The Garter Girl is dedicated to redesigning wedding traditions, helping brides make memories and creating family heirlooms through the art and design of wedding garters. The trip start by discussing how Julianne began blogging. Julianne shares tips for blogging and helps you figure out who you are blogging for. She also gives us tools for creating content and discusses permission to let yourself fail in your business.

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Main Takeaways:

  • How she started with blogging [0:04:28]
  • Why you should blog + tips for blogging [0:07:48]
  • What the difference is between a business with a blog vs. blogging as a business [0:09:57]
  • Why you should repurpose content [0:14:53]
  • What some helpful tools for creating content [0:19:27]
  • How to use your blog to establish yourself as an expert + leading with value [0:26:09]
  • Why you should give yourself the license to fail in your business [0:38:04]
Sometimes, done is better than perfect.
— Julianne Smith
The blog was really just my way of telling my story on my terms, to tell my story directly to my clients.
— Julianne Smith
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Julianne Smith is The Garter Girl, a stylish wedding garter design company that began in 2004. The Garter Girl is dedicated to redesigning wedding traditions, helping brides make memories and creating family heirlooms through the art and design of wedding garters.

Julianne believes that a wedding garter is a small, but meaningful, way for a bride to celebrate her own personal style. The Garter Girl’s sophisticated wedding garters are designed to be modern heirlooms intended to be cherished for generations to come. Each and every stylish wedding garter in the The Garter Girl’s collection is meticulously hand created by Julianne and designed with a recognizable modern femininity that encompasses her signature style. The daughter of a seamstress and a surgeon, Julianne grew up in small town Pennsylvania surrounded by lots of family and tons of laughter. It was a love of politics that brought her to the nation’s capital where she fell in love with D.C. and city life. Before creating The Garter Girl, Julianne was a communications strategist and media specialist. She worked on Capitol Hill for a member of Congress and served in the White House’s administration. Combining her passion for DC, media and weddings in 2010, Julianne started the Washington DC area’s top wedding website, United With Love. Featuring locally helpful wedding planning advice, Julianne built United With Love to be a trusted resource and a well-known brand with thousands of readers every day. She was able to sell United With Love in 2016. Julianne is obsessed with style and is known for her passion and sophisticated attention to detail. She is also known for consistently being overdressed, a loyal friend and always ready to host. She is the mother of three small children and lives in the city of Washington, D.C. with her husband and family. Follow Julianne over on Instagram or check out her blog for more behind the scenes and the occasional family picture!

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94: Becki Crosby, How to Makeover Your Mentality - the Creative Empire podcast

  Reina and Christina’s guest this episode of the Creative Empire Podcast is Becki Crosby, a professional stylist turned self-confidence promoter and creator of Whippy Cake. Becki shares that being a business owner isn't all sunshine and rainbows and what people can actually expect to go through. Also discussed in this episode is the need to go all in in your business, why you need to trust yourself and what you're good at, and why personal development is important + what kinds to partake in. The trio even discuss copycats, why you shouldn't hyperfocus on them, and how to find your special message to the world.


Show Highlights:

  • What Becki's winding path to entrepreneurship looked like
  • Why Becki chose to shut down her headband business rather than sell it
  • Why you need to go all in with your business, no matter if you don't have many hours to work on it
  • What the difference is between successful business owners + people who are just dabbling
  • How being a business owner isn't all sunshine and rainbows
  • Why people are more important than money and what role intuition plays in Becki's business
  • What "makeup for your mindset" is and why you need to be doing it
  • Why you need to trust yourself and what you're good at
  • Why you shouldn't hyperfocus on copycats
  • How to figure out what's special about you, what your message to the world is
  • Why personal development is important + what kinds to partake in

Show Notes:

Becki’s Bio:

Who is Whippy Cake? That would be me, Becki, a professional stylist turned self-confidence promoter. I love a beauty tutorial as much as the next girl, but I also believe in a world where people put more value on who you are on the inside than what you look like on the outside.

If pixie tutorials and confidence lessons aren’t enough to kick start your journey to mega achievement, I’ve still got you covered.  After developing my own business for 7+ years and working on dream projects that still have me pinching myself, I've turned my attention to you, the up-and-coming #GirlBoss who just might need a little pep talk from someone who has been there, tried that.  Never one to shy away from a crowd, I have also taken my love for teaching on the road, speaking to audiences big and small, from LA to NYC.

Becki’s Social Handles:

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Episode 87: How to Craft a Business with Intention, with Ali Edwards - the Creative Empire podcast

Reina and Christina interview Ali Edwards, creator of memory keeping products and classes, this Creative Empire podcast episode. Ali talks about always connecting everything she puts out back to her reason why, how she is very intentional in everything she does, and why she prefers slow growth. During this conversation, the trio discuss thinking ahead in launch strategy and share tips on how to authentically share your story with your audience.


Show Highlights:

  • What One Little Word is and what Ali's word for this year is
  • How Ali uses her website to get her customers to focus on certain projects
  • How to create & use a launch strategy
  • How to intentionally create products/classes that matter to you
  • Why Ali encourages everyone to connect with their reason why
  • How Ali's business has evolved
  • What tips Ali has for people wanting to authentically share their story with their audience
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Show Notes:

Ali’s Bio:

Ali Edwards' passion resides in that very special place where the stories and images of life intersect. Designer, blogger, workshop instructor, and author of four books about memory keeping, Ali is well known for authentically capturing everyday life with photos and words and creating memory keeping projects from those moments that pass by in an instant. Guided by simple principles such as not making things more complicated than they need to be, focusing on the things that matter most and embracing imperfection, Ali Edwards is proud to be a work in progress. She believes without a doubt that there's no right or wrong way to do all this, that the real stories are worth telling, and there's a whole lot of celebrating to do even in the midst of the challenging pieces of life. Since 2004, Ali Edwards blog, workshops and memory keeping projects have inspired tens of thousands of people to share their own stories and enrich their own lives through the process. Ali lives in Eugene, Oregon with her two children and their cat George Washington.

Ali’s Social Handles:

75: How to Run a Successful Blog, with Lauren Grove - the Creative Empire podcast

Joining Reina and Christina for this Empire Mentoring session is Lauren Grove, blogger at Every Last Detail. First they chat about how Lauren got started + took the leap to blogging full-time. Then they discuss how much work it takes to run a blog, how to get more content, and how to get eyes on your blog from social media. From there they discuss Lauren's V List, which is a special list of wedding vendors vetted by Lauren, and how to strategically pitch to editors like Lauren. There's something for everyone in this episode, whether you're looking to run a successful blog or you're a wedding vendor looking to learn how to pitch! 


Show Highlights:

  • How Lauren got started blogging + took the leap to blogging full-time
  • How much work it takes to run a blog
  • How to get new content for your business + blog
  • How to get people to your website from social media
  • How to balance two different audiences for your blog
  • How to stay true to your audience, even if it means rejecting a payday
  • How to handle a vendor list on your blog
  • What kind of websites convert for wedding vendors
  • What editors are looking for + how to get content published
  • How to be strategic when pitching + how to make it easier on the editors

Show Notes:

Lauren’s Bio:

I started out in the wedding industry as most do- as a bride. While I was planning, I was not only constantly searching for inspiration, but also for information. Needless to say, I never quite found that information, which is one of the reasons why I decided to start blogging- to help other brides. As the years passed, I gained more and more experience designing and planning weddings- all the while, continue to blog via Every Last Detail. As ELD grew, so did my passion to educate and inspire brides. Working in the industry (and also being a bride who was “absolutely clueless”) has played a huge role in helping me shape and focus my business and goals. I now not only have a goal of educating brides, but I have also developed a passion for helping wedding professionals grow their businesses. I am able to fulfill both of these passions with Every Last Detail, and I thank readers, brides, and wedding professionals for allowing me to do so!

Lauren’s Social Handles:

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65: How to Turn Your Blog into a Business, with Luisa Hammett - the Creative Empire podcast

Joining Reina and Christina for this episode of the Creative Empire Podcast is Luisa Hammett. Luisa is a successful blogger and shares a lot of insight on how to turn your blog into a business. The trio cover everything from how to earn money blogging to when to start charging + how to approach brands. If you've been thinking of starting a blog or you already have a blog + want to take it to the next level, this episode is for you! [audio mp3="http://creativeempire.co/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/27-560-post/EP-74-Luisa-Hammett.mp3"][/audio]


Show Highlights:

  • How to make money blogging
  • What some reasons are that non-bloggers might want to have a blog + how it can help their business
  • Why consistency is important + how to be more consistent
  • How to come up with time to take pictures
  • What life looks like as a really well-known blogger
  • How to decide whether or not to collaborate with a brand
  • When to start charging + how to approach brands
  • How to grow your blog readership + social media following
  • How to deal with haters

Show Notes:

Luisa’s Bio:

Born in Colombia, raised in the South, currently living in the beautiful city of Atlanta. I recently graduated with my Masters in Clinical Nutrition from Georgia State University and completed a dietetic internship at Southern Regional Emory Healthcare. I am currently preparing for the final step, which is taking the registered dietetics licensure exam to become a registered dietitian (RD). Peaches to Pearls has been one of the best experience of my life because it gives me a platform to share my two biggest passions, food and fashion. Whether its a new healthy recipe or an affordable, chic outfit, Peaches to Pearls is for any woman trying to live a prettier life.

Luisa’s Social Handles:

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33: How to Double Your Email List and Turn Them into Advocates for Your Brand, with Courtney Slazinik - the Creative Empire podcast

On this episode of the Creative Empire Podcast Reina & Christina are talking to Courtney Slazinik of Click it Up a Notch. Courtney talks about her transition from having a blog to having a business and how to make that a smooth one. One of the key points Courtney discussed was how she grew her email list and then turned them into advocated for her brand. A great deal of that had to do with being protective of this list, and intentional with what she sends to them. Finally Courtney talks about how she talks to two different audiences and caters to her over 32,000 email subscribers. 


Show Highlights:

  • How to go from having a blog to having a business
  • What the key is to doubling your email list
  • How to turn email subscribers into advocates for your brand
  • How to talk to two different audiences

Show Notes:

Courtney's Bio:

Courtney Slazinik is the force behind Click it Up a Notch, a Huffington Post Top 5 Blog for Momtographers. Each week she teachers tens of thousands of photographers how to capture life’s simple moments, and also instructs aspiring entrepreneurs how she built her Facebook community of over 60 thousand fans.

Courtney's Social Handles:

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