All posts filed under “Blogging + Branding

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Last night, I attended the first installment of Greater Jackson Arts Council’s “Creative Empowerment.” Their first speaker: Luvvie Ajayi *screams*

Source: GJAC

Source: GJAC

To be quite honest, I had no idea what this event was about. Is this part of her book tour? Is this a club appearance? Is she going to give us one of those TED Talk-like speeches? Is she going to drive pass Duling Hall and toss her book at our heads? It really didn’t matter, she is the definition of blogger goals. Not only was I going but I went VIP (which included a itty bitty but delicious lemonade cocktail, appetizers, and an autographed copy of her book “I’m Judging You: The Do Better Manual“).

Nice set, right?

DJ Java

VIP, tricks!

I spent weeks thinking about an awesome, life-changing question I could ask her. And when I got the chance to finally meet her, I had nothing. But, I got a selfie. That’s sufficient, right?

That’s my name!

We’re basically, almost best friends now!

I sat on the front row (where people of my stature sit but mostly because I paid for a VIP ticket). Because I’m a bit neurotic, I brought a notebook to take notes. I didn’t want to miss a thing!

Luvvie and Fanta

Although I saw a card that advertised her lecture as “Get Smart About Social Media: How to Maintain a Clean Online Reputation” that’s not really what she lectured about and I’m glad. So what exactly did she talk about? If you were there, you would know. Ultimately, the purpose of her lecture was to let her readers (aka Luv Nation) know that she is not an overnight success, more like a 14-year success. She gave us a very detailed timeline of events which started with her friends encouraging her to start a blog in undergrad. Throughout school and a career she loathe, she consistently blogged which ultimately lead to opportunities such as being on the red carpet at the Oscars, Black Women in Hollywood Brunch, moderating panels for the White House, becoming a NYTimes Best-Selling Author and then having that best-seller turned into a series! After her lecture, locals joined her for “Awesomely Hot Topics”

Panelists: Donna Ladd, Maisie Brown, Jon Salem and Pam Junior. Moderated by Joy Redmond. Fanta made the shot again.

Errr, I do like that locals were included but didn’t necessarily kind of sort but not really think it was necessary *Kanye shrug* I came to see Luvvie and thought she would’ve done a better job. After all, that’s really what’s she’s known for. Lastly, was a super good question and answer segment.

On Writing: She didn’t consider herself a writer because it wasn’t something she saw in her environment. She also told us not to spend all day editing. “Perfect is the enemy of progress.”- Luvvie

On Fear and Failure: Fear of failure can push us to greatness but if we think things aren’t working out, we should have a plan. She got what she thought was her dream job and quit on the first day. That must’ve felt glorious. However, she had her parents as a safety net which a lot of us don’t have. As a result, she emphasized “stacking paper” and “aggressively saving.”

On Mississippi and Brain Drain: Our geography doesn’t matter because social media provides a global platform. She talked about having friends all over the world, thanks to social media.

On How to Be Successful: Surround yourself with the right people. She listed 3 types of leaders: Visionary, Builders and Sustainers. If you’re a visionary, surround yourself with builders and sustainers and vice versa. She also talked about personal investments such as getting a lawyer. She stressed it so much that I thought about retaining one while she was speaking. I do have a lot of attorney friends so I guess it’s time to have that “how much would you charge for 20 minutes” conversation.

The moderator put Rita B. (Read: Condoms, Comedy & Husband’s Bruised Ego) on the spot. She wanted her to discuss how surrounding herself with the right people advanced her career. In that same conversation, Luvvie told Rita that she was already receiving the signs she needed but that she didn’t take herself seriously, that she needed to get her social media accounts verified, and that she would talk to her after the show. What now?! You’re going to talk to her after the show and give her advice?*screams*

On the Impostor Syndrome: She has suffered from the Impostor Syndrome but often analyzes her way out of it, she didn’t get where she is by accident. She told us to be grateful that we are in the room, people who are far less talented are often in the room and never question themselves and that if enough people tell you that you’re gifted, believe them.

The best advice: She’s always done what she felt like doing, lived in her truth, payed attention to only what she was doing and did what she loved. Overall, it was an awesome and affirming event. I guess I really didn’t need to ask her any questions because she answered everything I thought about asking. I know a lot of us bloggers and creatives have the same insecurities and wonder if it’s worth it. I guess we can stick it out a little longer, right?

Bravo to Greater Jackson Arts Council! It was a really good launch to the Creative Empowerment Series and I look forward to the next lecturer!

Read and share my previous post: What’s in My Box? January HuesBox

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Anything worth perfecting requires continuing education. It may be a requirement for your job or something you are prompted to do on your own. Although I’ve been blogging for a while, you would not believe how many webinars, newsletters, books and blogs I read from other bloggers on how to be a better blogger. You’re welcome.

Jessica Simien Source:

Jessica Simien Source:

Most recently (over the last few years), I’ve started looking within my environment. I’m fairly certain they don’t know this because I don’t like to be soft and because I don’t want to hurt my bad-girl image but I deem both Aprill Coleman and Jessica Simien the blogmothers of Jackson and probably Mississippi.  Name better bloggers, I’ll wait.

Source: Simien Media Group

So, when Jessica announced “Let’s Get Social: A Comprehensive Social Media Workshop for Small Business Owners and Creatives” looking to establish a social media strategy in 2017 and invited bloggers to cover the event I was like “let me throw my topknot in the hat.” Like many things, I attempt to apply without expectation to reduce the chances of me crying in my closet if I’m not selected but I was because I’m kind of awesome!

So, I selected the in-person workshop opposed to the webinar. Why? Because I watch so many webinars and that are usually prerecorded so there is no opportunity to chat or ask questions or the live webinars where there is no opportunity to chat or ask questions unless you sign up for their follow-up course which usually cost $iaintgot.99.

Upon arrival, Jessica had bags of snacks and juices. While I was still full from breakfast, I did pertake in a glass or two of crisp orange juice. Anyway, we were provided a workbook, got an opportunity to introduce ourselves then the workshop started.

Source: Simien Media Group

The workshop was broken down into 3 categories (The Basics, Get It Together and Let’s Get Social) included setting goals, objectives and themes, dos and don’ts as well as measuring success on platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. Our workbook allowed us to follow along and fill in what we were trying to accomplish; however, being the rebel that I am, I did not write in my workbook because I want to be able to reference it in the future. Despite someone (Jessica) thinking there was not much for me to learn, I learned a lot of shortcuts, tips, tricks and apps I should be using opposed to some of the ones I have. We all know having space on our iPhones is important.

If you want to learn some of those tips, you should probably follow her and attend her next workshop *stares* If you want people to know you exist, you have to be on social media. Hey I don’t make the news, I just report it. I hate it just as much as you and people just want more and more and now I have to do videos too? WTF?

For more productive blog posts and if you need help as a small business or creative (which you probably do) check out Jessica Simien. For the usual passive aggressiveness, read and share my previous post: Dissecting Gumbogate

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Let’s watch TV together heresubscribe to our weekly newsletter, “like” Pink Gumbeaux on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Bloglovin. Now, to your regularly scheduled post:

I started blogging 2 years prior to the launch of Pink Gumbeaux. Like most bloggers back then, I blogged about natural hair. I had gone natural a year prior and wanted to share my thoughts on the struggle, products and styling. That got boring. A year later, I launched my own blog and spent the entire year writing and deleting blog posts. The next year, I cleaned up the basic Blogger theme I downloaded for free and enlisted the help of Mom naming the blog. I told her I wanted “pink” in the title (because it’s my favorite color). Pink Gumbeaux was born on December 10, 2010.

I did not know what the hell I was doing for a large part of my blog’s existence. The theme of my blog has evolved over time to what I now consider a personal and lifestyle blog. My blog is also a space where I can be myself opposed to the facade I present in other parts of my life; otherwise, I’d be passing out ass whippings. Apparently, that’s illegal.

On December 10th, Pink Gumbeaux turns 6! This year, I decided to share with my readers, fellow bloggers and future bloggers the 6 lessons I’ve learned in 6 years.

  1. Blogging is harder than people think. And, harder for the technologically challenged. I spend approximately 8 hours a week brainstorming on awesome topics, writing and revising blog posts, sharing it across social media platforms, and reading literature and watching webinars on how I can slay as a blogger and “an influencer.”
  2.  Yeah, about the money I mentioned earlier. I pay to maintain domains ( and for the people who can’t spell it correctly), annual website fees, social media platforms (where blog posts are scheduled and posted because ain’t nobody got all day to be on social media), and any materials, classes or coaching I need for aforementioned slayage.
  3. It is rare to blog about something that someone hasn’t already blogged about. So what’s make me different? Me! You now get my personality and the internal dialogue I have with myself in every post. It hasn’t always been like this. I thought my personality was off-putting but people love my honesty and even find my dry humor amusing.
  4. Although I’ve been blogging for nearly a decade, the last year or so features my best blog posts. Yep, it took that long. I haven’t deleted Pink Gumbeaux @ Blogger or corrected ill-formatted posts of the past because it’s important for both you and me to see how long I’ve come.
  5. This is my first year actively networking with bloggers, vloggers, podcasters and other creatives. I’m as much of an introvert online as I am in person. It was uncomfortable and I had cap on how much uncomfortableness I would deal with on the daily basis. However, I love the new blogger friends I’ve made. They are a helpful and supportive bunch.
  6. I love it. People ask how do I find time to blog when I work for “the man” full time, am an entrepreneur, doctoral student and newlywed as well as the time I spend playing with stray cats. Like you’ve probably heard many times, people make time for what matters. And, you as a reader and supporter matter. Not really, I just do it to feed my ego.

For those who visit Pink Gumbeaux, like and share my posts, Mom who named my blog and informs me of grammatical errors, Husband who allows me to talk about his family behind their backs (but on a public platform), this is the part where I’m supposed to say thank you.

Anyway, it’s Pink Gumbeaux’s birthday. Congratulate me, tricks!

Donate to Pink Gumbeaux (the donation link is in the menu bar), read and share our previous post: Awaken, My Love!