For this week’s Influencer Tips Thursday, we are learning so much from Jen & how she managed to make her freelance bizz now her full time gig along with travel blogging. She has so many insider insights, so let’s get to it!
Who are you and where are you from?
I’m Jen, a freelance copywriter, social media manager, and travel blogger. I’m originally
from Michigan (shout out to all my Midwesterners!) and I’ve been living in Los Angeles
for the past 10 years.
What is your brand about and what made you start it?
My brand is a combo of my professional freelance work and my blog, Jen on the Run. I
started my freelance writing business about a year and a half ago, and I’ve been
blogging for about six months. I have been writing for a long time, but never for myself –
it was always for college assignments, former bosses, or clients. Last spring, I attended
the 3-day conference, ALT Summit in Palm Springs, which opened my eyes to the world
of blogging. I realized I could combine my love of writing with my love of travel by
blogging. All the tools were within my reach, so why not go for it?
Do you have another job outside of being a (blogger/influencer/entrepreneur)?
Yes – the work that I do for clients as a freelancer – but I tend to marry these two paths,
since blogging, social media management, and writing all involve complementary skills.
When I was previously working in PR for a firm, I used to say that my freelance
business was my “side hustle.” Now, my freelance biz is my full-time, 9-5 job, and my
blog is how I like to spend my spare time!!
Is it difficult to balance your work life and passion project(s)?
Surprisingly, yes. It might not look like it from the outside though, because I work from home. So many people (myself included) think that they can accomplish ANYTHING if they just didn’t have that commute, long hours at another job, or school assignments… the list goes on. The reality is that it’s just about time management.
What do you love the most about being an influencer?
I love having the opportunity to share, and I love having the opportunity to listen. I like
understanding what people respond to and what people don’t, learning from that and
always growing. I have always sought ways to reflect and achieve personal growth, and
running a blog and being an influencer is a great way to practice that.
What do you think is the hardest thing about being an influencer?
The weight of words. Typing anything and publishing it online means it could be there
indefinitely – as long as the website is still up. I think traditionally, people have put a lot
of weight on having their words in print, but print has a shelf life. A blog or an online
What are three tips you can give to someone who also wants to be an influencer like you?
1. Just do it. I spent so many years fixating on what my Instagram feed should look
like or what niche I wanted to be in. Really, just get started. Don’t worry about
being perfect. That’s just the thing – everything evolves. You learn and grow.
Whatever is “perfect” today will be even “more perfect” six months from now.
2. Don’t be shy. This is a tough one for me. Own it, and don’t worry about bragging.
It’s not bragging. It’s you sharing something that someone else might find
genuinely useful or beneficial. I used to think that pitching myself meant I was
stuck up and full of myself. Now I realize pitching is an essential tool in order to
get yourself and your message out there.
3. Sign off. Really, I need to follow this advice myself. Most days I feel like I’m on
my computer or checking my phone from 8am – 11pm. But if you’re already
working from home, why not go for a 30-minute walk? I have to remind myself of
What are your goals and where do you see yourself a year from now? & where do you hope to be in 3 – 5 years?
Right now, most of my business is fueled by the services I offer as a freelancer; writing
and social media, and my blog is my creative outlet. I love working with clients,
understanding their needs and business goals, and working hard to share mission with
their audience. Similarly, I’d like to accomplish that with my blog and learn how to
monetize it better. Ideally in 3-5 years, I’d be in a place where I’m balancing both.
Who/what inspires you or keeps you motivated to do what you do?
Really, it’s my followers. The people who leave comments on my Instagram and blog
posts, open my emails and follow me back. It really makes my day when someone
shares their genuine thoughts on something I’ve written. That’s why I keep going.
What’s your favorite app aside from instagram?
Pinterest, of course!
What’s your next project and how can we support you?
Right now I’m really working on getting my emails up running. I’d love it if you signed up for my email newsletter! I even have a couple freebies right now – an ultimate packing list for anywhere in the world and also 15 inspiring writing prompts.
How important is it to you to make genuine connections/friendships through social media/in our industry & why?
I think the beauty of our modern digital age is that it has opened up a lot of doors. Now, connecting is as simple as sending a DM or leaving a nice comment that might just make someone’s day. I’ve met up with other influencers I’ve met online, and really can’t believe how easy it is to just reach out, message someone, and then there you go – you have a new brunch bud. I believe everyone has something to offer, and the person next to me knows more about something that I do. Why not strike up a conversation and learn from them?
Where can we find you in social media?(state your social media handles/blog/website)
What are you looking forward to the most from Influencer Girl Gang and what do you hope to acquire from joining us? I’m so happy I found the Influencer Girl Gang and I can’t wait to attend one of the meetups soon!
Hope this blogpost was helpful to you and other inspiring entrepreneurs out there to pursue their passion.