We wanted to share our backstories on how we became Instagram Influencers as well as give you guys our best tips! This blog post is going to be in Q&A form so we can get down to all the details!
A little bit about us first:
We are two bikini loving girls who met on social media and became best friends almost instantly! We bonded over an obsession for taking photos and sipping on lattes. We hangout a couple times a week even though we live an hour away from each other.
We recently created our blog, The Gypsea and The Merbabe where we share our tropical imagery, and promote a girl boss and female-supportive lifestyle! We have a collaboration blog post on our blog about “How we worked with MIDORI” with each of our stories and we’d love for you to check that out today too!
Now, let’s get right into this Q&A!
How long have you guys been Instagram Influencers for?
For this question we kind of have the same answer.
We both have been working with companies for around 2 years now, but it wasn’t until this past year when we really started taking it seriously. We both realize that since becoming friends we were able to push each other to succeed and go outside of our comfort zones. We both love to support each other in every way and we have to say having a bestie blogger babe to push you must work because we've both grown within the industry so much. It's so fun to have someone in your life that loves being creative and has the same goals as you.
What camera(s) do you guys shoot with?
Annalisa (The Merbabe) - Sometimes I use my iPhone and on other days I'll use my Canon Rebel T5i, it’s super lightweight and easy to use! It really depends on where I am and if I planned to be shooting that day. I've gotten better about having my camera on me but not as good as Melly.
Melly (The Gypsea) - I have a Canon 80D & I don't ever really go anywhere without my camera, it’s practically glued to me! I never know when inspiration will strike, and you better believe, if i come across some hibiscus or plumeria flowers, I WILL be snapping some shots!
What is your favorite place you've ever shot at?
Annalisa (The Merbabe) - Hands down, my favorite shooting location was Lanikai Beach on Oahu, Hawaii! The water is so clear and the skies are so blue it's everything I could ever imagine in a shoot location!
Melly (The Gypsea) - I personally ADORE a more local beach, the amazing, Laguna Beach! Although when traveling I love shooting in new tropical places, but theres just something about Laguna and because it’s so close to me I can go whenever and get images in my own little tropical oasis.
How often do you post on social media? Why?
We try to post on social media definitely once a day, but if we can fit in two posts then that's pure perfection!
We like to post every day and sometimes twice a day because not only do we like to usually post a photo of ourselves, but also a filler photo that will make our overall feed look nice!
Plus, with new photos being posted to Instagram every second, it’s important to stay relevant on the feed! The more people see your posts, the more they will pay attention and they're then more likely to engage with you!
Side note from Annalisa (The Merbabe) – since my page is less professional and more personal I sometimes post multiple times a day if I'm out and about and going on an adventure I want to share with you guys in real time. I remember when I went to Disneyland I must have posted like 3 times that day. So if I have the photos I will definitely be posting.
When did you guys start your personal blogs? Why?
Annalisa (The Merbabe) - I started my blog a little over a year ago. I wanted to share more of who I am with the people who follow me. I wanted to share a more personal side of me. At first it started out as a diary of sorts and then moved into something where I can share many different aspects of my life. I do product reviews, routines, college advice and just thoughts and updates. It's nice to have a platform that has no rhyme or reason to just let everyone see other sides of who I am.
Melly (The Gypsea) - I started my current blog, Tan Lines Bikini Blog, around exactly a year ago! YAY! I started this blog because, having so many bikinis, I really wanted to let other girls know what bikinis were good and what weren't before they'd purchase! I think it’s so important to invest in quality bikinis if you're going to be buying them because quality bikinis will last SO much longer and it'll be worth every penny spent!
Although I adore blogging about bikinis, throughout the past year I’ve found a love for inspirational and lifestyle blog posts so there’s a lot more of that on the blog today!
Best tips for an aspiring Instagram influencer?
We love sharing our personal tips because they truly work!
So....our favorite tips are:
1. Be You!
People that are following you love nothing more than to be able to feel like they actually know who they're staring at photos of. It is so important to realize that the people that follow you are following you because they like who you are. Be the real you on social media, and don't be afraid to share what you want to share. Have an idea of what YOU WANT your page to be and stay true to that. There is nothing more rewarding than looking at your page and knowing you put your whole self into creating what it has become.
2. Stay Authentic!
Yes, were talking about NOT buying likes/followers/comments/etc. It’s so important to be real, there’s so many fakes in the social media world. (It's also kind of obvious when you buy fake followers)
Your goal should be to just be truly you, and do what you love; creating. If you're true to this a strong, loyal and real following will build. A large following takes time to grow, but IT WILL get there.
People are out there that are going to love you and what you're doing. You just have to target your audience and roll with it! Just do what you love, show your passion and let it happen on its own!
3. Create Quality Content
Not everyone is going to create amazing quality and professional content right off the bat and that’s something that we're even still working on!
Here are some things we pay close attention to:
Lighting - Knowing the difference between good and bad lighting will save you from the very beginning. Lighting is key to good images!
Clarity of Image - Make sure your photos are clear and not blurry, you want someone to look at your photo and want to see more, not to leave your page due to a blurry image.
Skylines - it may seem like a small detail but having your skylines straight makes a huge difference in how professional a photo comes across. This is also one of our pet peeves.
It takes time for everyone! We can all use improvement and there is always space to learn and grow!
What is your guys favorite part of social media?
Yet again, we have the same answer for this question.
Hands down, our favorite part of social media is making connections. There are so many people out in the world and social media helps us meet them. We love getting to know and working with amazing companies like MIDORI BIKINIS. They’ve been such a light in our social media life and they're always so great to work with. We truly enjoy every chance we get to work with them!
We also adore social media because we wouldn't be here, together today writing this blog post for you if it weren't for social media! We probably never would have met at all which is so scary to think about!
We really enjoyed sharing some of our thoughts with you guys and hope you enjoyed our collaboration blog post! Make sure to head over to our blog to read our story on “How we worked with MIDORI Bikinis!”
xx The Gypsea and The Merbabe
Two tropical babes who live in bikinis.