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instagram planning and printing alternatives – comeback mag pt. 3

Screen Shot 2016-09-06 at 9.19.45 AM
Someone pretty smart once told me, you should be treating Instagram like it’s a blog.
And with any blog, there’s got to be content. Consistent content. So let’s plan some.
Content
  • Stories/Advice – these will be short (a few hundred words)
  • Interviews/Stories from people with cool jobs
  • Excerpts from Talha’s series (From Dreams to Destiny, check it out.)
  • Extra things
    • deadlines/announcements
    • productivity
    • covering events
Schedule
Post Mon, Wed, Fri in the morning
Post once on the weekend
If you follow the Comeback Instagram, you’ll see the first post went up today. Trusting your gut. Give it a read. The plan is to keep posting these advice posts and some interviews as well. With some good photos, hopefully this will being in some more engagement and followers. I’ll report back in a month or two about how that’s going.
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Instagram Stats as of 9/6/2016:
Posts: 145
Followers: 111
Following: 58
Other updates:
  1. Make a media kit. – Made one. All I have to add is the different ways brands can work with us, which I haven’t figured out yet.
  2. Email businesses. – Nope. Without the previous, I found it hard to send out an email with substance.
  3. Find alternatives to printing. –  ok here goes.

Printing Alternatives: 

  • Website/blog style content
    • $144 annually (with Squarespace).
    • Consistent production of content.
    • Similarly done by other magazines.
    • Less appealing than being in a magazine which makes it more difficult to get contributors (and for free too).
  • Both? Run a website and offer prints?
    • Like babe vibes.
    • A lot of work and a lot of content production.
    • But is it worth it?
  • Posters of individual stories !!!
    • Still has indesign costs <— paying for it anyways.
    • Same price as selling a booklet, just less design time.

I’ll try out the Zine printing and see if the quality is to par. Otherwise, I may stick to the incredibly expensive Peecho printing and use Issuu for digital publication. Limits physical distribution and Issuu isn’t the nicest to use.  PDFs? Who knows.

Come back next week for pt. 4: what about the next issue? 

money and publishing – behind comeback mag pt. 2

I told you I’d be back, and look where I am now. In case you missed the last post, I had prioritized finding more funding/money for Comeback as my next step. I’ve researched, and brainstormed, and below are my findings.

Ways to Get Funding
  • Ask for it from family/friends
  • Sell copies of digital magazine
  • Sell copies of print magazine
  • Partner with a company for some branded content
  • Company sponsorships
  • Sell ads within the magazine
  • Sell ads on the (tbd) website
  • Start a Kickstarter/Indiegogo/etc.
  • Self fund it (aka get a job)

Working with other companies and crowd-funding both require a substantial readership to appeal to them. I don’t have a strong enough readership to earn their money. I could also sell copies of the magazine, whether digital or print, but that income would come after spending and is not a guaranteed source of money.

Budgeting

How much money I need to finish out the year: $400

Costs for the rest of 2016:

  • InDesign – $80
  • Website (?) – $20
  • Publishing – $300

Savings: $250

Left to earn: $150

What’s Next

Of the ways listed above, I’m thinking the most likely successful options include selling copies once published, company sponsorships (maybe reader sponsorships too), and probably getting a job. The last option is a little difficult time-wise, but it will be on the back burner. From that, here are the next steps I’m thinking:

  1. Grow following. – This will bring along with it sales and brands. Mostly going to focus on Instagram, post next week!
  2. Make a media kit. – While the following is growing, I can put all the data and statistics into a simple kit that I can start sending to companies. It won’t be very successful, since these numbers are decreasing, but it’s still worth a shot. My emails need solid content to go with what I’m asking.
  3. Email businesses. – This goes with the previous point, you gotta start somewhere.
  4. Find alternatives to printing. – it’s the biggest cost and makes it the most difficult to share. It’s really cool, holding your work in you hands but it’s not realistic with the kind of money that I’m working with.

In the next week, I’ll be taking these next steps and putting them into action. Stay tuned next week for my Instagram plan and updates on media kit, emails, and printing alternatives. 

nail art and the need for money – sharing the process behind comeback mag

It’s Friday night and I just got back from a three-day trip to the coast. The heat and my extended family stick to me closer than I desire. The only thing that prompted this post is this video, found after watching some of the other mini documentaries on their channel.

Here’s a summary of the video:

  • Sharmadean Reid is the founder of the beauty brand WAH London.
  • Reid opened her nail salon in 2009 at the start of the economic recession. She borrowed money from friends and had two employees.
  • Now, she’s got 25 employees and sells her products in Boots (like CVS or Target).
  • She’s super chill.

What I got was:

  • She’s goals, and
  • You’re not on the way to being her.

My magazine/business/side hustle has not been doing well. It launched as well as I would hope, with high reads and engagement, but then it has been going down from there. I’ve been considering postponing the release of the fourth issue for the end of the year, in hopes that it will result in some better content and better circulation.

Since it’s been dead silent around here (except for the whole site re-do), I thought I’d share the process of making something out of Comeback Magazine.

Reid (from the video) gave her five tips for starting a business:

  1. Always have a vision
  2. Build a community
  3. Everything from the telephone to the toilet paper should be of your vibe
  4. Ask your friends and family for money first
  5. Only hire people that fit your vibe.

Applying to Comeback:

Vision: to become the source for guidance in times of existential crisis, especially for young adults entering into the workforce.

Community: young adults nearing the end of their educational careers and starting the working careers.

Consistency/Vibe: the hardest one yet. I haven’t found what the vibe is and I haven’t kept a version of that vibe going for more than a month.

Money: I’ve already spent hella money for someone who barely gets an allowance and doesn’t have a job. Too bad I’m busy doing all these non-paying extracurriculars so that I can get into a good college and get a good job later on.  Let’s put find a source of income as a big “to-do” since everyfuckingthing costs money. 

Hiring/Finding help: Again, I don’t have any money or enough growth to justify asking for free help. I tried looking for help but my age mixed with my inexperience didn’t produce a great array of options (I’m talking about the woman who was going to call my high school because she thought my magazine was a scam). So I think I’m going to stick to the solo-op for now. But, if you have any advice you’d like to give, I’m all ears.

Money seems to be the priority, so I will search for ways to get a lot of it. Look out for that research post next week. I’m setting myself that deadline.

a lazy aesthetic

I got into tumblr this summer and have been on there quite often. It’s a lot easier to reblog someone else’s content than make my own so if you want to see what I’m feeling, head on over there.

http://emptyirises.tumblr.com/post/137522969950/i-want-to-work-here

http://emptyirises.tumblr.com/post/136781918650/typicalmitul-toronto-fog-instagram

http://emptyirises.tumblr.com/post/136544304050/geomecries-72515-i-visited-uc-berkeley

http://emptyirises.tumblr.com/post/133897446070/melodyandviolence-copenhagen-by-lucycheung

http://emptyirises.tumblr.com/post/133009228155/roussettes-by-michael-schauer

basic overnight oats.

oats-mainoats-spoonThis past month, I’ve been trying to eat healthier, or at least, eat a filling breakfast. And I’ve found on my hunts through Pinterest something called, Overnight Oats. It’s pretty filling, and can taste amazing when you put in the right fruits. It actually was so good, easy to make, and quick that I’ve created the bare-bones recipe for these oats so that you know what you need, and can add what you want.

DSC_9557oats-ingredientsIngredients:
old-fashioned oats
milk (almond, soy, chocolate, regular, etc.)
yogurt or a mashed banana
chia seeds

optional (but yummy):
fruits
honey
cinnamon
any other topping

Steps:

  1. Pick a sealable container, and pour in the amount of oats you want. Then pour in the same amount of milk (in a 1:1 ratio)
  2. Put in about 1 tbsp of yogurt for every cup of oat-milk mixture. Play around with this to make it the perfect thickness for you.
  3. Pour in a handful of chia seeds. All the “measurements” in this are incredibly flexible, if you couldn’t tell from my fancy terminology. 🙂
  4. Then just mix in the fruit and other toppings, close the container, and pop it in the fridge.
  5. Next morning, already made oatmeal!

Easy, right? Now, tell me in the comments what you think and what you would put in these overnight oats.

pretty packaging: korean skincare

DSC_9378My cousin came back from Korea with a suitcase filled with beauty products. While they can serve odd purposes, these products have such cool, colorful packaging that I couldn’t resist sharing with you. DSC_9379DSC_9381 This facial soap is made in the shape of an egg, and packaged a mini egg carton too. Awesome packaging idea and branding. (also these photos turned out pretty good, I think I may try photographing at this time of day again)DSC_9386 This above-the-lip-fuzz remover sports and cute face on the front and two little hands that pop out of the back to make the brand name come to life.DSC_9390DSC_9393And finally, a 3-step black head removal system that is cute, instructive, and with oh-so colorful packaging + graphics. As for the products themselves, I haven’t really tested out the egg soap and fuzz strips but the blackhead remover works like a charm (and you get to see all the dirt come out when you peel off Step 2).

What products do you think have some stunning packaging? Share in the comments! 

grand canyon.

Next up in our west-of-the-rockies road trip, the Grand Canyon.DSC_8812 copy DSC_8821 copy We finally arrived at the South Rim around 7 pm. It was not the best of planning that day. The drive through was absolutely beautiful, a single black line through the red carpet. When we arrived, we only had a few hours to take in the stunning views before driving back to our cabin through the dark, lightning-filled skies.  DSC_8834 copyDSC_8836 copyDSC_8837 copyDSC_8839 copyTip!! One day, or even two, is not enough to take in all of the grand C. There’s a special bus that takes you to the most beautiful road in the park, and only that bus is allowed to drive there. If possible, take a ride on as many buses as you can before they close. DSC_8861 copy DSC_8864 copyThe next day, we went to Zion National Park. DSC_8898 copyDSC_8902 copyDSC_8922 copySimilar to the Grand Canyon, but smaller, and with a orange highway they perfectly named “the carmel highway” running through the whole park. It was a nice stay-in-the-car experience, the last nature activity before we entered the city of lights and spending money on luck.

’14 summer roadtrip: yellowstone np

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For the first two weeks of August, I went on what I called a west-of-the-rockies road trip. The first day consisted of a 13 hour drive from Seattle to Yellowstone. Our first night was at Grant Village. The next morning we headed out to the east side of the loop.DSC_8252 DSC_8264 copyDSC_8311 copy  DSC_8337 copyDSC_8320 copy DSC_8321 copy DSC_8327 copyDSC_8415 copy DSC_8416 copy DSC_8438 copy And finally we arrived at the Mammoth Hot Springs. Possibly my favorite place we stayed this trip. There was this hill right next to our little cabin that gave a beautiful, chilly view of the whole town. The next morning we headed for the west side of the loop.
DSC_8442 copy DSC_8461 copy DSC_8464 copy DSC_8466 copy DSC_8478 copy DSC_8486 copy DSC_8494 copy DSC_8496 copy DSC_8500 copy DSC_8512 copy DSC_8506 copyDSC_8514 copy DSC_8525 copyDSC_8549 copyoutput_MQbcOI DSC_8529 copy  There were so many geyser basins, and they can all start to look the same after a while. But then you meet a bacteria-filled bowl of boiling water, and it’s stunning. DSC_8643 copy DSC_8652 copy DSC_8666 copy DSC_8699 copy output_2BviWwDSC_8738 copyWe ended our Yellowstone visit at the Old Faithful Snow Lodge. There is a lot to do in Yellowstone and two days barely got us around the full loop. Three days would have given us time to see everything and enjoy each of the magnificent underground structures of  My cousin and I went early in the morning to watch Old Faithful a second time before the sun rose and we headed off to Grand Teton, and Salt Lake City.