Posted At: April 9, 2008 12:19 PM
by Sarah Yates
Dreams really can come true. In Amy Bailey’s case, it took the will to succeed and the courage to act, not to mention a fabulous sense of fashion. Bailey is the creator of My Scoop, an online style magazine that started out as a blog for Southern women interested in fashion and beauty. The site explores all subjects relating to current trends in fashion; it ranges from decorating “posh pads” to throwing the perfect holiday party. What’s the best part about the magazine? It’s online, interactive and easy to use. In my interview with Bailey, she explained the inspiration behind her fresh idea to communicate with her public on the Web.
How did you come up with the idea to start a fashion blog?
Bailey: “After working in magazine publishing for seven years, specifically with fashion and beauty clients, and because I had such a love for fashion—it seemed like a natural fit. I also had a tremendous amount of encouragement from peers who believed in me and frequently sought my style advice. Since I had always wanted to start my own fashion magazine, with the way the world is going, it only made sense to start an online style magazine.”
How did the blog progress into a business and another Web site?
Bailey: “After several months of the blog gaining momentum, I actually had clients approach me about advertising on the blog. With strong readership, responsive e-mail subscribers and feedback from My Scoop enthusiasts, I had the confidence to take the leap and make My Scoop a business. A friend also gave me the book The Alchemist that inspired me to follow my dreams and think big, because, after all, you are what you think. This book, along with a book called Purple Cow by Seth Godin, truly inspired me that I was being called to be an entrepreneur—to do something different. The only way to be successful in today’s world and realize my dreams of publishing a fashion magazine was to think outside the box. By creating an online style magazine I was doing something nontraditional and thinking into the future and future generations.”
How did you promote your blog and business? What were some of your public relations challenges and tactics?
Bailey: “I utilized my media contacts, regularly sending press releases to regional publications, and e-mail marketing, along with word of mouth marketing. By creating a buzz around My Scoop, I generated readership and, of course, more readership equals more buzz equals more advertisers. One of the challenges that is also one of the biggest advantages of My Scoop is that online media is not understood by everyone; it is still unknown to some. The challenge is explaining this to an older generation; the advantage is having a cutting-edge media outlet that is focused on reaching a younger generation that is looking for a hip style source that focuses on where they live.”
What advice would you give budding business owners who are interested in promoting their products through the Web?
Bailey: “There is not a better way to market a product than through the Web. With people spending an average of eight hours a day on the computer, you have a captive audience looking for an escape. You have to be able to provide something different, something fun yet sophisticated, to capture their attention. Advice to entrepreneurs: I am a firm believer that once you make up your mind to do something, you can do it. Making up your mind to follow your dreams and taking action to go after them is the first and most important step you can take in becoming an entrepreneur. Once you make up your mind to do it and once you visualize yourself realizing your dreams, the question is no longer ‘if you can do it.’ It becomes ‘when will you do it?’ You will notice that there seems to be energy around what you are doing, you will begin to get encouragement from others (even strangers), and things will just seem to fall into place.”
Interested in a summer internship with My Scoop? E-mail Amy Bailey at[email protected].
What are some other ways to utilize the Internet and social media to integrate a business idea and public relations? Do you have a story like Amy Bailey’s?