What I Learned From Building a Real Life Blogging Community

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How many times have you gone to an event where you know no one and dreaded the prospect of being there alone? Or, you try to desperately find someone in the crowd who might also be alone so you can strike up a conversation? And how awesome is that moment of relief when you spot a face you know across the room and realize you’re not alone?

Related: Check out Adrianna Naomi’s article on networking and real-life community building.

The Beginning of Blogging Community

I started going to fashion week events over a decade ago. My time going as a blogger only started in nearly 2013, however. Over the years, I learned a lot of valuable knowledge on what it’s like to network and meet people at career related events when you’re a fashion blogger. Naturally, being me, I want to share my experiences and hopefully, impart some confidence in the networking arena.

When I first started going alone, I knew NO ONE. Well, there might have been one or two faces that I interacted with and met . For the most part, though, it was a lonely affair. I have intense social anxiety on top of it all, so I would stand in the corner desperately clinging to a wine glass and taking sips to relieve all that pent up anxiety I had inside.

Fast forward to now, and you better believe I’ll know nearly a quarter of the people at a large event. It’s AH-MAY-ZING. I found that no matter where I go, there’s someone there that I know.

Related: Building an online blogging community.

Where I Started

The thing that made it all possible is the willingness to go out of my comfort zone and meet with bloggers and Instagrammers one on one. I’d notice I was interacting with a group of girls on a consistent basis, and we all lived in the same city (NYC). This got me wondering why in the world I wasn’t meeting for more coffee dates!

What started as a few meetings turned into an ENTIRE NETWORK of fashion bloggers and influencers. NYC Style Collective initially began as a little meeting group where the girls get together and discuss the business side of blogging. As it started growing, though, more brands began approaching us, and we began doing mass scale promotions and marketing campaigns together!

Rebecca Minkoff NYC Style Collective event with Oddfellows Ice Cream
The goodies at our latest NYC Style Collective event at the Rebecca Minkoff store in Soho, NYC. (Picture by Allie of AllieNYC.com)

At this point, those few coffee dates with different girls are a thriving network of NYC-based influencers. We do photoshoots together, support each other, share business advice and negotiate payments and pricing for promotions. It’s become more than a network- it’s a union of young influencer professionals. 🙂

Related: Check out Allie’s recap of one of the recent NYC Style Collective events.

The point is, you can’t do it all alone, especially when you start growing. You need a reliable support system of smart individuals who can lend a helping hand. I couldn’t have grown the way I did without meeting the amazing girls in this group.