We recently made a couple of small changes to our blogger application. Since there aren't many bloggers on Hellobee just yet (so far, it's only me!), it may be hard to tell what we’re looking for in a blogger, so I thought I’d talk a little bit about the application today. Our application states that "we have very limited slots so we’ll be looking for bloggers with the complete package — an interesting voice, a great sense of style, an awesome post 1-2 times a week, someone who shares helpful information as well as personal stories, and takes blog-worthy pictures."
I've crammed a lot of information into that one sentence, so let me try to break it down...
Many of you are probably familiar with Weddingbee and are wondering whether Hellobee is going to follow a similar format. We will have real moms and moms-to-bee blogging, but we're not going to be updating the blog as frequently as you're used to seeing on Weddingbee. Don't worry -- we will be updating the blog multiple times a day! But because we'll be updating less, that also means we'll be accepting fewer bloggers in general.
From a personal/business standpoint, updating 20+ times a day is a huge undertaking that requires a full-time editor-in-chief and an editorial assistant. From reviewing applications to managing writers to editing posts to writing posts ourselves... it's a whole lot of work that doesn't leave much time to focus on other areas of the site. When I launched Weddingbee, I was able to work 100 hour weeks and I loved it. But with an active toddler and a newborn on the way in less than 6 weeks, I don't want to spread myself too thin (even though I'm not taking any maternity leave).
An interesting voice.
Your posts have to be interesting to readers, and that is the single most important factor we consider. We'd love to have all kinds of bloggers going through the motherhood journey -- from IVF, to a twin pregnancy, to a SAHM, to an adoptive mom, to a mom of a special needs child. We will consider many factors when looking at an application. but when it comes down to it, our number one criteria is having a great blog.
A great sense of style.
This one is a bit of a toughie since beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but we want to maintain a certain aesthetic to Hellobee, so having a great sense of style is definitely an important aspect of being a Hellobee blogger.
An awesome post 2-3 times a week.
Because Hellobee will not be updating that frequently, we’ll be looking for fewer posts from each blogger. On a personal note, I've noticed that posting less has given me more time to add a little extra polish to each post, which has been a fun little change!
Someone who shares helpful information as well as personal stories.
I've read thousands of blogger applications in my time, and most bloggers lean towards writing personal stories because sharing our own experiences is what comes most naturally. I think personal stories are great, but the best ones share helpful and interesting information that's tied together with a personal story. Not that there isn't room for purely personal stories and purely information/inspiration based posts, but it's a balance. What we're really looking for when we read your posts is whether we want to publish them on Hellobee.
Takes blog-worthy pictures.
When I first started oh so many years ago, launching a site with just a blog was more than enough. But in this day and age of media overload with so many things competing for your attention, I think you need a little extra oomph to stand out from the crowd. So before launching Hellobee, I put a lot of time into improving my photography and photoshop skills because beautiful pictures and layouts always stand out for me (amongst the hundreds of blogs I read daily). Presenting the exact same information but in an aesthetically pleasing way just has so much more of an impact.
We’re really going to focus on the quality and layout of every post, trying to make each one not only interesting and informative, but aesthetically pleasing as well. Now we're not expecting you to shoot manual and master photoshop, but we also don't want blurry iphone pictures in every post (I can't believe how horrible some of my earlier pictures were!). We'll help you edit pictures in photoshop and create pretty layouts, but photoshop needs a pretty solid image to do its thing. So it'd be great if you were able to master certain photography basics like don’t use flash, understand your camera’s settings, etc.
TTC, Pregnant, Babies under 6 Months
Currently we're accepting applications from bloggers that are trying to conceive, pregnant, or have babies under 6 months. We wanted to limit the scope for launch and will revisit opening up applications to moms of older babies/toddlers at a later time. For now this is what we're thinking for the three types of bloggers:
TTC - Because not every TTC attempt ends in a successful pregnancy, TTC bloggers will be anonymous guest bloggers to protect their privacy. And because getting pregnant may take many cycles, retroactive journeys are ideal guest series.
Pregnant - We will announce pregnant bloggers on Hellobee at the start of their second trimester, after they've had a chance to share the news with all their friends and family.
Babies Under 6 Months - So much happens in the first year of a baby's life, which is why we're focusing on babies currently under 6 months of age.
I know this is a lot to ask of volunteers. But hopefully our bloggers will find the Hellobee experience to be rewarding and enjoyable! I've been having a blast blogging about little Charlie Bee, and hope that you will enjoy blogging on Hellobee too!
We've already received a number of applications but haven't started going through them yet. If you'd like to make any edits to an application you've already submitted, please feel free to drop us a line!
Do you have any questions about becoming a Hellobee blogger?