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Just using this pic of me, faffing about @google last year in NYC, because I needed something to illustrate this little introduction.
A spate of new followers and some fascinating meetings have led me to commit these points to my feed; 1. My job is to cast social talent for brand campaigns 2. When I say casting (as opposed to connecting) - yes I’m making the comparison with how a casting director works for 🎥 and 📺 My clients are the brands - sticking with the above comparison then - the brands are the producers 4. And the social talent therefore are the actors 5. And it’s casting because for every campaign I like to think about not only who will the brand like, but who will the audience enjoy and how does the whole cast work as a whole 6. I’m not an agent - I don’t represent the talent 7. But I do nurture my talent relationships and I enjoy trying to understand from them (and their agents) where they want to work next. Eg let’s say a fashion blogger wants to move into interiors or a beauty blogger is now pregnant and so moving into family content 8. I’ve worked on lots of lovely projects for brands such as Miele, Warehouse, Oasis, B&Q 9. My prediction for 2019 is that more of the services brands (insurance, banks, mortgages, utilities) will look to social to bring their products to life 10. I’ve been called CJ all my life. Stands for Cathrine Jane. 💋
What’s in a like?
A double tap rarely means we actually like the post. It’s a; hey, I’m here, I agree, I like that top, I love you, I empathise, I’m showing you my support, I’m doing this because it’s rude if I don’t, you like mine so I’ll like yours, I’m watching, I’ve not really paid any attention to the post but I like everything you do, I have devoured every word you’ve written and I couldn’t agree more, I want to be your friend, I haven’t seen you on here for a while so by liking this I’m telling Instagram I want to see more of you, I was with you at this event, I want to buy, eat, drink, visit this, I’m sorry, I don’t know what else to say, I like you so I’ll like this. It seems Instagram is going ahead with it’s plan to get rid of displaying likes. What do we think about that? I don’t mind it at all. For work I use the number of likes on a talent’s work as a v basic, base barometer of engagement. But I look a lot further than that; comments, story views, Swipe Ups, reach, DMs and saved posts tell you the real story - most of which you can only get by asking the account holder. So now I’m just adding likes to the reporting. Without the public validation of a like, to me this is Instagram forcing content to be king again. Don’t do it for the likes, do it for you. Dress is @kemitelford and I specifically bought this from Yvonne not only because I like her beautiful clothes, but her content, her words and advice are beautiful. This dress needed to come to Venice to get in a boat to dinner 🍝 and stand on a bridge and I liked doing all of that 💋
Our role in casting talent is to not just make recommendations of who to work with, in many ways that is the easy bit.
The challenge is then to bring the project in on budget and on time. Making sure that both brand and talent and sometimes their respective spokespeople (PR agency and agent typically) are all clear about what’s happening. Often there are multiple elements to the campaign, such as attending a physical event or briefing and then set dates for delivering content across stories, grid, IGTV and live. The thing is, everything is possible and it’s great to be as collaborative and creative as we can so that brand, talent and the audience benefit. Our job is to make sure it all runs smoothly and often that is just about being as clear as possible about all the various elements of the project. If I’m the creative and the person that brings people together - @london_sl2 is the detail. Thanks @pinkhouseliving for recognising that in amongst the ‘fun’ of plotting a really great campaign, it’s so important to just be clear about what’s what. 💋
A strange one for me this - back to traditional media.
I was asked onto the @vicderbyshire show @bbctwo to discuss the cast for this year’s #loveisland. I’d written copious notes about what I wanted to say, I know with live TV you’ve got to seize your moment to get your point across. At least I managed to sneak in my ‘authenticity is the new influence’ mantra. My line is that Love Island producers have missed an opportunity here. There is a wealth of empowering #bodypositive content on social media at the moment. Women running marathons in their swimwear @bryonygordon and @bowelbabe, or dancing in their cossies @chessiekingg @em_clarkson I’m looking at you beauties. This was a moment for Love Island to tap into that heartbeat, the drum of #bodyconfidence and present to us a cast that is as inclusive as it is interesting, even inspiring. Traditional media missing the beat, again. Thanks to @lauraanderson1x for being my sparring partner 💋
I absolutely love spotting new trends - whether that’s a new product, the next big conversation to be had on social or identifying the latest up-and-coming up influencer.
I’ve actually got examples if you’re interested? The menopause - everyone’s talking about it now right, I did a big event on the subject early last year. Who isn’t following @rosemarinoramsey? Sort that out straight away - she’s justifiably earned her blue tick today - I cast her in a project this Feb. And @mirabeauwine? Well let’s just say I’ve been drinking that for longer than I should probably admit. Thing is, it’s not because I’m some mystic meg - maybe I kiss a lot of frogs to find the gems? 🤔 When @stokepark asked if @em_clarkson and I to come and try out their new Padel courts I have to admit I was in it more for the lunch and spa action afterwards. But I am totally sold. It’s a cross between tennis and squash. You play in pairs on a court a bit smaller than a tennis court, over a net with glass walls that the ball can bounce off. It sounds a bit random - to play it’s brilliant and pretty easy to pick up. I can totally see why it’s the no. 2 sport in Spain (after football) and why @stokepark have invested in these courts. 👏🏻 to Tom @britishpadel for bringing the game to Britain - I’m predicting BIG things. Remember who told you first folks. 💋
The irony of me posting an interiors pic having spent the day with @comedowntothewoods and @thisstyle_rocks at their @nohouserules event, also attended by some serious heavy weight interior and lifestyle accounts, is not lost on me.
In fact I’d say I am way out of my lane - I am not an interiors blogger! But just as we said to the class yesterday, it’s good to come out of your comfort zone - even if that means you just show half your face, or discuss something you haven’t mentioned before or try and do a swanky interiors shot when you clearly don’t know what you’re doing. I’d also like to show off part one of the goody bag gifts from yesterday. Lisa @root_houseplants is going to be the Mrs Hinch of plants, she is your woman for all things green and keeping them alive! I haven’t even lit the @eka_scents candle but I can smell already and def giving my downstairs loo the hotel vibe I was going for. But just in case my guests get too comfortable, especially the #boardingboys mates tonight (4 teens on a sleepover 😵 ) I’ve got @hellodayplanner #thisisnotabloodyhotel print to keep them in check
I would like to credit @pinkhouseliving with being one of the first accounts that made the penny drop for me that brands working with social talent was the way forward.
Right from the off Emily approached her blog @pinkhouseliving - as a brand in itself. Much like her fellow Scot, JK Rowling, who supposedly knew the whole HP story before she wrote it - Emily too had her plan mapped out. This was one of the first accounts I could recognise as having a consistence message and on brand images over and over. Lots of the successful accounts on here say - and they mean this genuinely - that they don’t quite know why they took off or what they did that made them so popular. But Emily had a plan, she knew what she was doing and I’ve been 👏🏻 and 🙌🏽 her on all the way. I cheered especially loud when she moved down to London because it meant we could meet and work together IRL. Where I discovered that perhaps one secret to her success, despite being ferociously bright, is her absolute love and finding the fun in what she does. Anyone who wants to try and ‘learn’ how to do social - and I say that with a caveat that it’s not necessarily something that’s taught - would do v well to watch Emily. Go back into the history of her feed and see how it’s evolved but retained it’s theme and had a clear direction. And certainly keep an eye out for what Emily does next because it will be a guide for us all. Oh and buy the book because it’s gorgeous. Emily celebrated the launch of her book @sketchlondon and providing pink rosé from @mirabeauwine was just too easy a match to make. 💗💗💗
BluntComms - navigating the shift of comms from trad to social media

New photos, time to remind everyone what I do. Cast social talent for brands.

We started as a traditional PR agency, scoring editorial coverage for clients (across fashion, homewares, lifestyle) in national media (print, broadcast and online)

I've sat on the BBC Breakfast red sofa, hung around backstage of Lorraine and ThisMornng, donned the big headphones for a Radio 5 Live interview, steered clients through heavy weight broadsheet interviews and been stuck in the DailyMail revolving door many times.

As such it was typical for us to generate the type of coverage for clients that would create a significant, business changing, effect - websites have record hits, phones ringing incessantly, peak sales days.

Excellent, our work was done.

But, around five years ago we started to notice that traditional media exposure stopped having that 'fall over' effect it used to have. Calls to clients after a big PR win were a bit flat - 'How did it go, were you busy?' 'Not really, didn't notice much.' #awkward

It wasn't as if securing the coverage was getting any easier - it still required the usual back and forth between journalists and skill to know what and when to pitch and then the inevitable wait for publication, which often came without warning.

BUT if the eventual piece worked for the client - ie created an effect - then all that was worth it. But you can see our problem when our work, stopped working. Yikes

At the same time I had started to work with the stylists, makeup artists and hairdressers on shows such as XFactor, Dancing on Ice, The Voice and SCD. I'd notice that their twitter accounts would be full of requests for what contestant X was wearing, just how the presenter got that perfect red lip, what product did that judge use to get her hair like that? As the spin off/extra shows for these programmes became more popular so too did the audience's appetite for everything that was going on behind the scenes and now with social it was now possible to get this dialogue going. The brands were delighted and would send stacks of product for the stylsts and MUA to use and credit.

So whilst trad media influence was waning, these new voices were having stacks of influence - and I also happened to love the speed at which brands could get coverage and track their results.

This is how we started to shift our focus towards social influencers - admittedly it was a challenge at first, mostly explaining to clients what an influencer was. But we have since advised brands such as Miele, Vision Express, Warehouse, B&Q, M&S, Tesco, FeelUnique.

Our home is a small, old cottage which has been added to and extended, in the past.
We have pretty much taken down every internal wall on the ground floor, so we live in one space but with separate areas for @london_sl2 and his wine, for #boardingboy to teen 🙄 and for me to potter and tidy. But this room, just as you enter the house was my closed door. The room I just didn’t want to think about. I shut it off - physically and metaphorically. And whilst I’m an advocate of that approach when you need it, there comes a time when the door needs opening. The @nohouserules events are all about opening doors. Literally; hosts such as @foxleamanor opened her doors to us last week, lots of smaller brands see the value in supporting the events with their goody bag entries and all the attendees open their minds to the possibilities of what Instagram can do for them. And @thisstyle_rocks and @comedowntothewoods open their considerable knowledge book on how and what and why this platform can be such a welcoming and positive space. Much like how this room is a positive space for me now; a welcome sight rather than a closed door. #boardingboy has nicknamed it the gallery. I’m delighted with that because it’s secretly hiding a plethora of football boots, dog leads, gym kit and shopping bags. The cushions were v v kindly gifted to me from @chandanwhittle and the bring pink ball is @mizzknits handy work 💋
You know when you see or hear about something and you think that’s surprising?
Peripheral thinking; I’m always saying to my brands think laterally about which talent you work with and to the talent I give the same advice - cross lanes, talk about products maybe no one else is covering yet or is a new area for you. When I met @lauraanderson1x we had lots of interesting chat about her @loveisland experience. Plus in hearing about her current workload I wasn’t that surprised to hear she’s partnering with fashion and makeup brands. That makes perfect sense. As we were saying goodbye Laura mentioned her new podcast to me. It’s with @bbcsounds and she’s in conversation with teens about their ‘firsts’. I loved the concept - Laura is just 30, young to me, but probably at that exact age a teen would think is old without being ancient. With the 💗 🌴 connection they’ll all certainly know who she is and feel Laura can relate to some of their teenage relationship traumas. I bet you Laura gets some great chat from her guests and a surprising insight into their thoughts that us parents will no doubt benefit from. Well done @lauraanderson1x I reckon this will be 💯 my type of podcast 👏🏻 💋 😉
I attended a debate @ukps.houseofcommons with the motion; Client behaviour is a contributor to putting at risk the mental health of agency personnel.
Arguing for the motion was my (and most other’s) agency guru @spencergall_ and The Bipolar Businessman. The debate was perhaps more directed at the big agency and client relationships and was full of lively discussion about the lengthy and expensive pitch process, clients demanding more for their money and the agencies’ role in managing these relationships. I was there to represent the blogger/talent crowd. As content creators you guys are mini agencies aren’t you? Receiving briefs, suggesting ideas, crafting content, writing copy, styling shoots... One of the big discussion points was money and how lengthy payment runs, and even then tedious delays to pay, cause a massive impact on mental health. And this was the big agencies saying this - I know for a fact that brands working with bloggers and then not paying in a timely way is a major issue. That’s why we make it an absolute priority to pay talent ASAP. @london_sl2 pays the very same day - I’ve got a story highlights tab of him paying within minutes of the bill being received. We sort of take it to an extreme because we’re trying to make a point here. For brands to keep working with social talent the way they want to, because you guys deliver results for their marketing spend, these clients are going to have to rethink their payment structure. 60, even 90 day payment runs are way out of date and even then I know you have to chase and put up with excuses. What are your favourite late payment tales? Mine is the old ‘Oh sorry, I must have missed your invoice. Please can you resend?’ 🙄
Last year I discovered @oohowater on here and was completely obsessed with how genius they are.
Little bubbles of liquid - water, cocktails, anything you like really - wrapped in edible (tasteless) seaweed. I just had to see these little pockets of incredible invention for myself so went to their pop up last September, taking my trusty pal @mummy_barrow with me. It was such an understated affair, 2 guys in a room telling the story of @oohowater about how its founder is their University professor. I tried one of the cocktail versions, as you can see I liked it. I am so thrilled that they’re going to be replacing plastic water bottles for this year’s @londonmarathon (thanks @inpolife for the intel) - this will make a MASSIVE difference to the usual sea of plastic we see at the end of the event. Plus the runners will get to enjoy the thrill of the burst AND @oohowater will get the recognition they deserve. Champions all round 💋
Woman of the moment 💯
Whilst I could happily discuss best lines and moments from #Fleabag, this from PWB, and geniously shared by @emmagannonuk, is going on my wall as one of the best things she’s ever said/written. I’m using the #Fleabag sensation to preach about content - and especially for brands. Please don’t bore your audience. Don’t be too cryptic with your comments, don’t assume we know as much we you do about your product, don’t leave me hanging and write half a caption and ask me to click the link in your bio, and don’t be boring. I’m not saying you’ve got to be as entertaining as PWB (or as racy 😉 ) but try and be more #fleabag and less
I’ve got another Gary in my life.
The Barlow and I tell you something, I spotted his potential right from the off. Whilst everyone else was putting posters of Mark, Robbie et al on their walls (posters on walls, maybe that’s why we’re all obsessed with picture galleries now eh? ) I was Gary all the way. People may have laughed then...but look at him now 😍😍 But this is my other Gary, well not at all mine due to his gazillion followers @garyvee. Everything he says about work and making money and getting on and business is pretty much perfect. I’m committing this particular snippet of advice to my feed because gifting is probably the number one area brands (big and especially small) ask advice on. And on a wider perspective- the whole social networking thing, making friends and connections is ultimately about being generous. Reach out to people because you can genuinely help them, rather than for your own gain. I’ll be talking about how to crack gifting at the @nohouserules event with @comedowntothewoods and @thisstyle_rocks. If you’ve got a particular question, fire away and we can have a little chat about it here. Gifts or Gary - I’m happy to chat about either 💋 😉
Pitching for business.
I actually love it. I get that sort of fizzy feeling when I’m on a roll - all a bit keen and way over talkative. I have been known to get overexcited in meetings as I’m literally bursting with ideas about what they could - oh scratch that, who am I kidding I mean SHOULD - be doing. But then with that high comes the crash. The crush of rejection. And I definitely do make the mistake of taking them personally. And oh yeah it’s them because I have had loads and loads of No’s. This one is pretty brutal. At first I was really 😡 with this dismissive response. I mean it IS rude isn’t it? But I can look at it a different way. I get No’s because I’m continually pushing the boundaries of where I want to take social marketing, my casting and ideas for campaigns. I’m not preaching to the converted - I’m often at square one explaining to the skeptics. And No’s sometimes mean; I don’t quite get what you’re saying so I’ll just block it. Which means I need to be more fluent with my pitch; sometimes I’m not always absolutely sure what I am saying - or I am, but I falter with my confidence because what if I’m not right? Stepping into new territory is always a risk - but what’s the worst that can happen? Perhaps a No like this one, which whilst a bit 😳☹️ at the time, I can take it. I’d almost bet that these guys come back to me soon enough saying “what was that you were saying again....?” And besides - there’s always their competitors 😉
Every morning I wake at 6am.
It's too early for me, especially since I don't have to get up for #boardingboy. I know I sld get another hour but then I reach under my pillow (yes that's where I keep it) and I do a merry dance from Insta 🔁 twitter 🔁 emails. This morning I was struck by @thestyleeditor post about authenticity being the new influence. Yeeeesss 💯. As someone who connects brands to talent increasingly I'm looking for people that really know what they're talking about and have an audience that listens. Less of the big follower numbers, more of the threads. I was about to make a stylised image of this authenticity quote but thought I should live it, rather than just say it. This is me, squinting coz I can't see the phone properly and worried I've wasted 2 hours of what should have been sleep by scrolling these squares.
Figuring out how to make the most of Instagram is not easy.
I’ve been here for what feels like from the beginning and I’m constantly learning and developing my ideas. One tactic that has remained solid though, in boosting my actual enjoyment on here, has been real life meet ups and developing followers/followees into actual friends. Nothing beats getting together IRL - whether that’s turning up to a panel event to listen to someone speak or attending a workshop/press day on my own but quickly realising I’m surrounded by people I know by their handle or even taking a DM chat offline and into a cafe/bar. When @comedowntothewoods and @thisstyle_rocks asked me to join them for the @nohouserules events to talk about how brands and talent can best work together I was so flattered. Amy and Katy run a v slick, jam packed, generous workshop - #fallingbackinlovewiththegram. It’s for anyone who’s just starting to build their account on here, to weary bloggers who feel they’ve reached a plateau and brands who are realising the grid is their new website and social comms needs to represent a significant potion of their marketing budget. Brands and bloggers attend and as well as listening to every nugget of advice from Katie and Amy - there’s also loads of sharing best practice with each other. I’m only a guest speaker - I’m there all day because, like I said, I want to keep learning (and I do, every time) - but my bit is to cover off how talent can switch up from gifting to paid work and how brands can find and work with their target bloggers most effectively. I could go on and on and on about really how brilliant these courses are. They’re also pretty rare as @thisstyle_rocks and @comedowntothewoods are busy enough with their own accounts (and real lives). So if/when you get the opportunity to meet the girls in real life and listen to their advice and, crucially, have them listen to you and your particular Instagram gripe, question or query, then I cannot recommend @nohouserules enough. I’m so thrilled they’re bringing this mother of a course to my home county; we are being hosted by the magnificent @foxleamanor 4.7.19 and it’s going to be glorious.
Week 2 of popping up on the @vicderbyshire @bbctwo show to comment on social again - this time the new gender stereotype guidelines.
Myself, @mother_pukka and @jadasezer were arguing the case that stereotypical creative is in fact not what the consumer wants. We know this because we work within a platform that provides immediate and pretty thorough feedback. And IF the consumer is more likely to react positively to an authentic, and honest campaign which turns into commercial success - for which we all have plenty of case studies - why wouldn’t brands want to tap into that? Richard - the 4th panellist felt differently, see my stories for his opinion. I don’t take these 📺 appearances lightly - I’m nervous as hell I’ll say something stupid and I’m also aware I’m partly a voice for this community, something I’m not sure I’m qualified to be. Big 💗 for your support 💋
Oh wow.
You know when people say their phone is blowing up and you think ‘yeah right, whatevs’. My phone IS blowing up. And the only reason I’m even writing that (rather dull) fact down is so I can come back and read this when I’m doubting myself again. When I’m waiting for a response from a pitch. Or reading a rejection ‘thanks but no thanks’ email. Or pacing the kitchen stressing about a project. I had an idea. @nic_zak saw the potential and we ran with it. Or should I say strut? There’s already masses of coverage about this campaign for @fandfclothing and their #FANDFSWIM range. The numbers on engagement and sales are still coming in. But if we were counting smiles and positivity as success then we absolutely smashed it. What a cast. @schoolofstrut we are your pupils. We strut in front of you. 👏🏻 💋
This is Davina.
But THIS was no ordinary event. Yes there were bloggers and a ginormous sculpture (? ) of RYVITA made of flowers and green smoothies and photogenic spots everywhere and lots of red lip 💋....all the sure fire signs of an influencer event. But this, well this was a masterclass. The talent (some of which I cast) were there courtesy of @ryvitauk to learn all about gut health and the vital importance of fibre. I was so convinced by the evidence - discussed by @davinamccall @theguthealthdoctor @bowelbabe - I genuinely bought a pack of Ryvita on the way home. Headline facts; Far from ‘just making us 💩’ fibre is essential for maintaining a healthy gut The aim is to eat 30g of fibre a day, 9/10 of us are nowhere near this Humans have no use for fibre, its sole purpose is to feed the bacteria in our intestine Recent reports have shown links between a healthy gut and improved mental health 👏🏻 @ryvitauk for really getting the creative juices flowing today - an inspiring and educational event
Despite going to school in London and University in St Andrews, I am a true Cheshire girl.
My family home is just south of Manchester, as is @london_sl2’s. So I am absolutely delighted to have been invited to take part in the @nohouserules Instagram masterclass at the iconic @arighibianchi in Macclesfield. It’s so strange, I went to school with some of the Bianchis, my sister went out with one of them, I can remember my mum taking day trips with her fancy friends to their store for a really swish day out. It’s a massive deal for me to be going back ‘home’ and talking about what I do. I’ll come off memory lane and tell you what the course is all about; it’s run by @comedowntothewoods and @thisstyle_rocks - 2 absolute integral powerhouses - and covers building your account whether you’re a brand or a business. You’ll learn about some v practical Instagram tricks, how to really understand your ‘numbers’ and what it takes to build a viable business on here. I’m there to talk about how brands can work with social talent and advise bloggers how they can get the brand deals. Visit @nohouserules for full details and see you there? And to all my family up in Cheshire who seem to constantly ask what I do - you’re v welcome to come on this course and find out! 😉 😘
What you see is what you get?
Or is it on Instagram? I talk a lot about brand campaigns being relevant for the talent, the brand AND the audience. The whole point of the project is to influence the viewer favourably towards the brand right? But sometimes the activity can leave the person watching out in the cold - with a sense of ‘its alright for you (talent) having all that fun and being treated etc and the brand gets the content, but what’s in it for me?’ Increasingly with my projects I’m really analysing what the viewer is going to see and feel when they watch the content and are we being absolutely mindful to include them and make them part of the action, rather than just watching with their noses pressed up against a window? Take this photo; Caption 1 Having a fabulous time with my best buddies @inpolife @comedowntothewoods @thisstyle_rocks larking about @bobbibrownuk before huge launch party @sketchlondon Caption 2 I wear v little make up because I’ve always found the made-up look on me is too ‘done’ and it’s not my style. But I have honestly never seen myself look like I do in this photo and it’s 💯 due to the skills of @bethleahymua working her magic with @bobbibrownuk. For the first time ever I am convinced to buy pretty expensive product because I can see that it enhances rather than masks. I felt so comfortable with it, that rather than stand in the background and watch in awe @inpolife @comedowntothewoods @thisstyle_rocks twist their phones this way and that to create engaging content I actually got IN the picture. I never do that! And look at me all happy and eyes open and everything! I’d 💯 recommend visiting the @bobbibrownuk pro shop for a make up lesson and session in front of their beauty ring. If nothing else it’ll give you the best photo ever to share on here and I guarantee that will make you feel fantastic.
All the content from our day @stokepark for @theboodlestennis with @fandfclothing will be coming out soon.
I’m pleased to say that on the day this gorgeous cast (and sorry my face is right up there front and central) enjoyed the whole experience. Phones were almost down (back row here taking pics of Novak on court) and we got a chance to chat, eat and enjoy the tennis and sunshine. We did nip them off for some photo and video content, all about how to prepare for an occasion, both with what you wear and how mentally to get ready. All of this will be out soon including all the details about what we were wearing from the brand new @fandfclothing Summer 19 range. Thanks @fandfclothing for a brilliant day 💋
I actually don’t know what else to even say.
If you know me just a tiny bit, you’re more likely to know that I am a sunshine bunny than what CJ actually stands for. I am not dealing with this rain. I mean what the actual actual? Come on June. Have a word. Lots of work chat on my stories if you’re here for that...all about my advice on how if you’re a talent you can connect with brands and how important the follower number is and whether to agent up or not and how gifting works etc. But if you just want a brief respite from the bladdddyyy rain - I give you @ivanah.dancer 💋
Oh yeah sure - I’ve got a cool job.
Working with lovely brands, devising social media campaigns that will drive commentary and action, spotting up and coming social talent, casting the big Instagram names, working out contracts and fees, paying people on time (thanks to @london_sl2 and of course the Instagram worthy events. What you don’t see is the set up and plans that go on behind the scenes - sometimes for months. The original pitch. Trying to get exactly the right cast together, on budget and all available on the same day. Negotiating rates and content. Venue sourcing, travel arrangements, technical requirements, music, food, arranging product to be sent. And then there’s always the physical set up and take down. Which is how I find myself on a hot evening going into town to meet the client to unload a van and get the venue ready ahead of an event tomorrow. This bit’s not so cool - but I’m trying 😉 Big 💋 to @nikzac @fandfclothing and the whole team there, for being dream clients and incredibly organised. We are going to 🙌🏽 this 💋
Holidays are over, washing loaded and dried, packed for and got #boardingboy back to school and full on work day tomorrow.
Shall we talk about skiing?? Holiday or not? I mean what with the painful boots and the awkward ski carry and the hairy scary moments getting up and then down the mountain - I found myself questioning if it is indeed a “holiday”? But then....all it takes is one good run, on perfect snow, hips sashaying side to side and the sun shining, slopes glistening and you get it - living on a prayer! Skiing is literally all about the peaks and troughs, one turn after another. I 💯 lost my nerve a few times and would just carry on going across the mountain, too anxious to make the turn. But eventually I’d come to a standstill and nothing for it but to go for it, make the move, and it always worked out. I’m sure it doesn’t take a genius to work out the metaphor I’m going for here? 😉 In other observations, we found a new rosé (quite a feat seeing as we holiday in Provence every year and as you know are BIG fans of @mirabeauwine). @hamptonwater was being served @lafoliedouce.vt - and it’s none other than Jon Bon Jovi’s rosé. It’s made in the Languedoc and has been labelled as one of the top 100 wines in the world. We liked it, enough to have a second - and it gave me my snow legs to get back down the mountain after lunch singing “ohhhhh we’re half way there, whoooo oooh we’re living on a prayer.” ⛷ ❄️ ☀️ 🏔 #seewhatIdidthere 😎
Breakfast with my Pa. Over which he asked me how - and not for the first time - Instagram works and who he should follow.
Many brilliant things about my dad; his raising of five children, his dedication to his 13 grandchildren, his unwavering and fierce love for my mum, his excellent reputation as a GP. But perhaps what I find most brilliant is his consistent willingness and interest to learn. With me he always wants to know about the latest tech or app or media he could/should be using. But it doesn’t come without frustration; he spent hours setting up their holiday cottage on @airbnb and the amount of times he’s called me asking where his email attachment is?? I have found coaching Instagram to be a larger part of my work recently and I get a real sense of achievement seeing the brands I’ve worked with grow and deliver brilliant content. But this was perhaps my favourite ‘session’; with my dad, over mushrooms on toast and tea, just suggesting a few accounts to follow (if you’re interested I set him up with @lovely_._lydia for Brexit chat, @bowelbabe for sheer inspiration and @mother_of_daughters for the midwifery chat and his fave journo @matthewsyedauthor for all things sport)
Sharing this absolute joy of a woman.
Does @bowelbabe need an introduction? I’m actually writing this direct to you Debs because have you written that list yet? We all love a list right, and of course you write things on there you’ve already done just to tick them off. But have you ever considered that just because you’ve written it down doesn’t mean you have to do it? Shock, horror - what am I saying? Imagine that...I’m suggesting that if you commit a task to paper you don’t actually have to do it! In fact I’m going one further by saying - write the list and by all means ✅ away for jobs done - but also consider the mighty strike through! The red line of ‘nope, not going to happen. Because I can’t, shouldn’t, don’t want to. Prioritising and letting things come off ‘the list’ is a real skill, I’ve been helping #boardingboy with it this week when he phoned in a panic about the amount of prep he has to do. And I also consulted with an emerging brand this week and again - we talked about how to identify the opportunities to take and those to move on from. Take a red pen and strike through - go on, try it. This is @bowelbabe resplendent in a new season dress from @fandfclothing 💋
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