This week marks the 6th year birthday for The Thrifty Pineapple. I seriously cannot believe it’s been six years. When I started this journey I really didn’t know what to expect I just wanted to share my fashion finds with friends and I am so grateful for what it has blossomed into.
I get quite a few questions on a weekly and daily basis regarding the blogging and influencer industry so I opened up questions to my Instagram followers and thought it would be fun to share all the knowledge I have gathered in the last 6 years. I hope you enjoy this Q&A about my experience as a blogger.
Grab your coffee or champagne and buckle in because this is an extra-long post.
Blogging Q&A – What I’ve Learned In The Last 6 Years
How did you get started?
I was originally inspired to start The Thrifty Pineapple after Jared (my husband) started his men’s fashion blog. I saw him taking photos and sharing and thought I should do this too! We were both fresh out of college and felt like we had all the time in the world and this would be a fun hobby. Once I decided I was going to do, I created my Instagram and just started posting. It was definitely a lot more in the moment back then (which is something I am currently trying to get back to), but every day on my lunch break I would take my tripod, Bluetooth clicker, and phone and head to the park down the street from my office. I would scout out a location set up camp and take photos. I would then eat my lunch in my car and edit the photo and post.
Here’s a look at some of those early tripod photos:
On the weekends, I would beg my mom (since I was still living at home) or Jared to take my photo. I was really just posting, I didn’t have too much of a strategy because Instagram was new, it was all just trial and error. I was working full time in social media management so that definitely helped because I was constantly learning new strategies or innovations.
After about 6 months of posting on Instagram, I gained a few thousand followers and thought I should become more official, that’s when I launched thethriftypineapple.com. It looked A LOT different back then but I just began exploring the blogging space in tandem with my Instagram ventures. You can read my first blog post here, which I actually worked with a photographer on for my first photoshoot.
From there, the rest is history!
How to build an Instagram audience? How would you recommend new bloggers to build a base of followers?
If I had a dime for every time I was asked this question, I could be a full-time blogger. This is the most common question I get asked. And there’s really no formula. I wish I could say do XYZ and you’ll have tons of followers but it doesn’t work like that.
And if I am being honest, I am so glad I started when I did because it was so much easier to grow back in 2014-2017 when there were no algorithms or ads or stories. It was a much simpler time.
The one thing that really helped me was posting every single day. It sounds intimidating and I’m not going to lie it’s a lot of work, but for the first 4.5 years of The Thrifty Pineapple, I posted every single day on Instagram. Even during my wedding and honeymoon, I gave someone the password to post on my behalf. I still post 5-7 times per week sometimes more sometimes less, but for me consistency is key. The way the algorithm works now people are served content on their feeds that Instagram believes they will engage with or have engaged with in the past. So when you don’t post for a few days you get pushed further and further down that list of content Instagram believes your followers want to see.
I also highly recommend engaging on Instagram. The point of social media is to be social. When I first started I would leave anywhere from 50-200 likes and comments a day on people’s posts that didn’t follow me. Now I try to leave 50 comments a day to engage with users and drive new followers to Thrifty Pineapple. I look at hashtags to popular locations around me or brands. Just posting and getting off the app isn’t enough to grow.
What’s your favorite part and least favorite part about being an influencer/blogging?
My favorite part of blogging is being able to connect with different people. I love building relationships and helping people. As an introvert, it can be hard to do that in real life but with this platform, it’s amazing to cross paths with people I wouldn’t have had the opportunity otherwise.
My least favorite part is probably that sometimes it can feel hard to take a break or rest. The first thing I do when I wake up is check Instagram and emails and it’s the last thing I do when I go to sleep.
What’s the hardest part about blogging?
The hardest part of blogging is probably photoshoots. I love taking photos and finding new locations but especially where I live it can be difficult to find locations that fit my aesthetic. There’s also a very tiny window of weather that is comfortable to take photos in. I try to take 3-5 outfits at a time on the weekends to make my life easier during the week but if it’s super hot or cold it’s hard or if it’s super windy my hair is all over the place or if it’s too bright I’ll be squinting. Plus there is no worse feeling than putting skinny jeans on in the back seat of my car in 90+ degree weather. It’s definitely not as glamorous as it comes across.
Here’s a great example from a recent photoshoot:
How did you get over your anxiety about people you personally know judging you?
Man, I don’t know if I am over it. It’s definitely not easy but I just try not to think about it. My coworkers definitely thought I was crazy back when I was eating my lunch in my car and taking photos. I had friends who I know were “supportive” to my face but had different feelings when I wasn’t around. Even to this day, when I share a vulnerable story and see that someone sends it to someone it gives me anxiety that people are making fun of me, but I really just try to stay positive and don’t think about it too much. Out of sight out of mind.
How do you handle sharing your blog with your personal friends especially at first?
I just did it! My family and close friends were supportive, but it is uncomfortable. Even now when I meet new people I won’t bring it up unless someone else does. I don’t want to come across like I am bragging or pretentious so if someone asks what I do I share what I do professionally or if it comes up in conversation I will casually mention it. It is definitely weird though.
Do you get mean/negative comments?
I have and definitely do. I am really grateful though because it is very rare. I think it’s something you are subject to when you put your life on the internet and I know I won’t be everyone’s cup of tea.
When you do a giveaway, what do you use to randomly select a winner?
I will export all the entries into an Excel sheet and have google choose a random number as then winner. I also use this tool occasionally. I always confirm the winner has followed all of the rules before announcing.
How do you get brand deals? Do you send them contracts or do they reach out to you?
Brand partnerships can happen in several different ways, they can reach out to me, their agency contact could reach out, they could use a third-party platform, or I could reach out. It really depends on the brand. Contracts are definitely part of the process to ensure everyone is held accountable.
Do you ever get pressured to not express your true thoughts about brands?
Absolutely not! My honest opinions are something I am not willing to compromise on. If there is something that I have partnered with a brand on to share about and I don’t like it. I will let the brand know this is something I can’t endorse and I am happy to move forward with the partnership sharing my honest thoughts or we can terminate the partnership and I can send the product back. This doesn’t happen very often because I am very picky on who I say yes to work with in the first place but it has happened several times in the past 6 years.
Whatever happened with the wallpaper company?
The wallpaper company is a perfect example. I agreed to share about their product which I loved initially but it didn’t stand the test of time so I continue to share my experience. They were not happy about it but eventually, they accepted that’s the risk that comes with working with influencers. You can read the whole fiasco here.
The thing is I would feel so bad if someone spent their hard-earned money on something that I shared when knowing all along I didn’t really like the product. There have definitely been things I have been influenced to purchase and been disappointed when they’ve arrived. I know not everything is going to work for everyone but I hope to minimize the risk by sharing my honest thoughts.
What is SEO? How do you use SEO?
SEO is short for search engine optimization. SEO is when you type something in google and google knows what website to show you. This is a lot of back end work with keywords and writing but it’s very important for websites.
For example, when someone types in Arkansas blogger my website pops up on the first page. That’s not by chance but by a lot of backend work.
How do you make an income off of blogging?
There are two main ways bloggers earn money. One is through sponsored content. This is where a company pays an influencer or blogger to share about their product. Two is through affiliate links. I’ve shared about this many times but sometimes when I share links I earn a small commission off purchases made.
This is really complicated and for the last 3 years I worked in affiliate marketing professionally, so I could talk about this forever but I won’t go into too many details. Because The Thrifty Pineapple is just a hobby for me I look to break even. So when I share about a blouse and people purchase it I hope to make my money back to buy more clothes to share or to cover the cost of my website. Now unlike some bloggers, I, of course, share more than just the items that I can link to. I share everything but on some items, I do make a commission.
How did you build your website?
Whew, this is a loaded question. Building a website takes a lot of knowledge but I will say Google and Pinterest are your best friends. It also helps to befriend a web developer. Jared helped me a ton with building my website but I will say it did not always look like this. This is my third website theme so it’s an ongoing process of making tweaks. And shoutout to my good friend, Brock, who is a rockstar web developer who will help me out when I am in a pinch.
What’s the most important part of blogging?
I feel like the most important part of blogging is honesty and consistency. SEO and sponsorships are all something that comes with time, but for me being honest is number 1 and be consistent is number 2. I have some blogger friends that write 1 new blog post a month, for me my blog is my top priority then Instagram. I own my blog, I don’t own anything else, so if Instagram or Pinterest were to shut down tomorrow I want you guys to know where you can find me.
I know you utilize Instagram the most but what’s your favorite platform?
Honestly, TikTok I spend the same if not more time on TikTok. The content is entertaining and it’s addicting. I’ve also found a lot of success in certain videos, so I am just playing around on there. It’s kind of freeing and fun to try something new with no pressure of performing.
What’s your biggest piece of advice for someone starting a business account?
Just do it! Find what works for you, try new things, and don’t give up! I had no idea how this would turn out six years ago and here I am!
If someone is starting a blog how often do you recommend posting?
As I said earlier on Instagram I would recommend every day. On my blog, I aim for a minimum of two posts a week and on Pinterest, I shared about 20-25 times per day. Everything else is less structured.
Tips for dipping your toes in with brands and how to get approved on Like To Know It?
I recommend making a bucket list of dream brands and share about them. For me, Lilly Pulitzer was on that dream list and I continued to share about them because I genuinely loved the brand so after consistently sharing about them for years one day they reached out and I about died of excitement.
Personally, I use Like To Know It but I recommend not putting all your eggs in that basket. As I mentioned, I have a lot of experience in affiliate marketing and Like To Know It is not everything. I am happy to put in a recommendation but if you are not getting accepted I recommend looking into platforms like CJ, ShareASale, ShopStyle, etc. There are a lot of other opportunities out there outside of Like To Know it.
I’d be happy to share more info if this is something you are interested in!
I know you work another full-time job, how many hours a week do you designate to blogging?
I probably spend anywhere from 10-20 hours a week given what the workload is like. Holiday is a very busy time with gift guides, but overall with photoshoots, editing, writing, answering emails, commenting, events, etc. It can add up quickly.
Have you had issues with your full-time job and your blog?
Yes, I have luckily only had one company where it became an issue. I am always very upfront during the interview process because I want to ensure there are no conflicts of interest. I was in a position where my blog became a conflict because I was working with competitor brands and I also had a very controlling emotionally-driven toxic boss. She began to want every brand partnership to be approved by her and if there was a local small business that she didn’t like the owner then I wasn’t allowed to promote them on Thrifty Pineapple. Thrifty Pineapple wasn’t something I was willing to give up so I eventually found a new job in a new industry where I could have creative freedom again. And it’s crazy because after I left that job doors began to open for Thrifty Pineapple and that’s when I started working with Lilly Pulitzer, Draper James, Erin Condren and so on.
Work organization other than planner tips
I wish I could say I had more tips. My planner really is my lifeline. I do take a lot of notes and make lists in my phone.
I hope you found this blog helpful, I love sharing my knowledge and I am currently working on a blogging 101 ebook – more to come but be on the lookout!
Thanks so much for your support whether you are a new follower or have stuck with me over the last six years, I truly appreciate each and every one of you! And like I said my favorite part is chatting with you, so feel free to always email or DM me and ask me ANYTHING!
Kristen Woolsey says
Great job on this post! I wish it was around when I started blogging myself.
I appreciate how candid you were here, and it’s so well written and easy to understand!
Jordan Holley says
Congrats on all of the success! So glad to be following your journey and thanks for sharing with us!
I loved this post! Seeing how you make The Thrifty Pineapple come to life is so much fun!!! You do such a great job producing fun content that I always love!!!
Nicole Andrade says
I’ve definitely contemplating starting a blog before, but the thought is overwhelming! Thank you for sharing your insight and always being so open and honest. I love following you!
Congrats Angela!! This is a huge accomplishment and I hope the next 6(+) years are even more amazing!
Congratulations on 6 years of The Thrifty Pineapple! I love your Instagram stories and of course your blog! 🍍
Congratulations on 6 years of The Thrifty Pineapple, Angela!🍍
Anna Thompson says
Thanks for the inside scoop!
Whitney robinson says
I so enjoyed reading your journey. I am in the process of trying to grow my blog and wanted to see if you had any advice on how to best share to Pinterest.
This is such great info. Thanks for taking the time out to do a q&a about blogging! I was always interested in how you got your partnerships. 😊
So glad you did this post! I had been wondering all of these things about your blog for awhile now. It’s interesting to hear the “behind the scenes” things.
Very informative! Congratulations!
Great post! Thanks so much for sharing. I’ve loved following along on your journey! You are an inspiration 💕
Kristen S says
Congratulations on 6 years! I love the fun aesthetic of your IG!!
Congrats on 6 years!!! 🎉
Thank you for explaining all of this. I always wondered how it worked!
Thanks for giving such detailed answers, you’re awesome.
Sarah F. says
Congrats on 6 years! I remember stumbling upon thrifty pineapple one day while perusing through some tags on Instagram, and I’m really glad I decided to follow! Thank you for all your hard work! Reading the blog and following your posts really puts a smile on my face!😊
Kate Konnerth says
My sister is trying to get into blogging, and this is so helpful! LOVE your blogs and style!! Yay for Lily!!
Ali Konnerth says
This is seriously so helpful! I’m going to take the leap of blogging especially now that I have confidence in blogging!
Thank you for putting this together! It’s helpful to get some insight on a world you’ve been in for six years. Keep going! 😊
Jessica Rennie says
Thank you for writing this post. I am wanting to start a blog of my own for a while now and this has helped me understand the work that goes into creating a blog. Thank you for all you do and reading your blog and seeing your posts make me happy. I am from Missouri and it sometimes feels like there aren’t many influencers in the Midwest, so you really inspire me that it can be done. When starting out, does all your fashion have to be new in order to create a blog or can you mix in some vintage pieces that may not be available anymore?
Love this! Thank you for sharing!
Megan Sluhocki says
So much growth! Love it!!
Love this! Such a great way to see some of the inner workings of blogging!!
Kelley Barton says
Wow! This was insanely helpful & insightful! I’m new here & already love you! Especially ur openness & vulnerability to talk about touchy subjects! So brave & wonderful! 💕💗💕
Very impressive and motivating!
K B says
Wow! This is fabulous! 🎉
Congrats on 6 years! I just wanted to say your post really opened my eyes to the amount of work it takes to start your own blog and be successful at it. I think it is also super important to put your passions first and to not let anyone control the content you want to post, it’s your blog! Thanks for sharing your 6 years with your followers!
Dafna Stempel says
This has been a great guide! I wish I had the capacity/bandwidth to do this. One day I’ll go through with my cooking project.
Nikki Ordway says
This was a fun read and I liked seeing some of your early photos 🙂
Thank you for sharing your tips and pointers about blogging and influencing! I have followed your IG account and blog for a few months now and I look forward to reading your articles and content since we have a similar style! I love seeing adorable outfits (yay Lilly!!) and some of your beauty tips. I’m always looking for ways to tackle my crazy thick hair! I’ve been slowly trying to brainstorm ways to begin blogging again and possibly try to break into influencing, so I really enjoyed your behind the scenes take of what goes into your blog and IG posts. Keep up the good work! 🙂
I loved this post! It was so helpful to get a feel for how TTP operates! Keep up the great work!
Happy birthday Thrifty Pineapple!
Danielle Lynch says
Congrats on the anniversary!
Wow you have really come a long way. That’s so amazing, good for you! The social media world can be very intimating. I’m proud of you for sticking to something you love regardless of what others think!
Candace Schumann says
Thanks for sharing, Angela! As a follower, it’s cool to get a behind the scenes view into the amount of work that goes into The Thrifty Pineapple. Love your content & look forward to the next 6!
Thank you for always being open and honest about products! Congratulations on 6 years!
These tips are so AWESOME! I appreciate your willingness to share your knowledge and help others in the process!
Jordan Anglin says
Great post! I don’t even have a blog, but I found it all so interesting. Congrats on 6 years!
Hunter Stafford says
Angela, great post! I loved reading all of your genuine responses to these questions. Congratulations on six years! 💕
Kaytlin Henderson says
Amazing that you shared all this great information. Congratulations on 6 years!!
Lots of great info here! Congrats on 6 years!
Molly Sue Harmon says
Congrats on 6 years!! So exciting.
Lena B says
Love this!!! Started from the bottom now you’re here!!!
Jenny S says
This is so awesome! I had no idea the amount of work it took! I appreciate your vulnerability and honesty! I love your content!!
Happy anniversary to you!💕
Happy Birthday Thrifty Pineapple!!!
Congratulations on all your success! I enjoy reading all your posts on Instagram. It’s so refreshing to just read something positive on social media. Thank you.
Best wishes for many years of continued success! Love your blog and content
Morgan Davidson says
Yay! 6 years! 💞🍍
This was such an in depth Q&A! Thank you for sharing
This is super interesting!
Congrats!! Me and my sister love your blog and instagram so much!
Amy Cooley says
Congrats on your 6th anniversary! It was neat to learn about the behind the scenes of running a social media account.
Abbie M R says
Love your style and posts thanks for sharing!
Sara Beth says
I love your blog and have been following for around 4 years now!! Thank you for being so welcoming and humble! I will continue to follow and support your content! Much love 💞💞
Megan Mai says
I love your evolution of style. It’s classic and up to date. Your workwear/professional style is my absolute favorite.
Haley Hylton says
Wow, congratulations on 6 years! 🎈 I’m new here and happy to follow! Very cool that your husband started a men’s fashion blog! He must be very stylish 😎
Always inspired by women who take risks and have such entrepreneurial but down to earth and kind spirits!
Caylee banta says
Love your blog!! Congrats on all your success!!
Love the blog! It is very cute and always positive ❤️
Congratulations on six years!
Claire S. says
Congratulations on 6 years! I first started following when you worked for Lauren James which I think was a couple of years ago now. Love your content and how you keep it real!
Sarah Burdeaux says
Great post! Congrats on 6 years!
Happy six years! Here’s to many more! Thanks for always being so open and honest with us! 💗
Love this! And love following you!! You are such a positive light!! Thanks for sharing!!
I have followed you since the beginning😊, I love your style and always admire how uplifting and positive you are. Thanks for always creating relevant content that is fun, colorful and happy. Happy 6 years of blogging!
Lauren Stanley says
Loved this post! Thank you for being so honest about your experience. Happy 6th Birthday to The Thrifty Pineapple! 💕🎉
Megan P. says
As always, thank you for your honesty! It’s so refreshing.
Now I need to go follow you on TikTok! 🙂
Wow! It is so fun to see where this all started. I have been following you for the last four years and have continued to enjoy the content you make as you grow and this evolves! Congrats on 6 years!
Happy 6 Year Anniversary!
Deborah Baer says
I really enjoy reading about your experiences and following your blog. Happy Anniversary! Keep blogging!
Out of curiosity, what keeps you from being a full time blogger?
Jessica Meeks says
Loved reading this! Congrats on so much success!
Jenn Wilson says
Congrats of 6 years!! It’s truly awesome what you e created! I’m so impressed!
Congratulations 🎉on 6 years and a beautiful inspirational story !!! Many more years of success to you !! ❤️
How did you decide on the name? (Or have you shared that,and I just missed it?)
What great tips! You can tell you love this community and truly love helping others. I know this took a lot of time and dedication to put together. Thank you!
Heather Watson ⚜️HerKentucky.com says
I’m always so interested to see how my blogger friends built their business! Thanks for this great post!
Allison B says
I always love seeing your posts! Congratulations for six years and many more!
Catherine Goodwin says
I love knowing your journey! It’s awesome to see how you have grown and take this journey with you. Keep it up!!
Congratulations on 6 years!
Linda brown says
Such a beautiful and informative blog!! Beautifully written!
Abigail Hughes says
Thank you for much for blogging! I love reading it and I enjoy a sneak peek at your life! It’s always useable knowledge too! That’s the best part!
Loved this post, it’s been so fun following your blogging journey from LJ to now!
Thanks for sharing!!!
Congratulations on 6 years!!! Enjoyed your post.
Congrats on six years!
Leigha Williamson says
Absolutely love this post! Love the juicy details and work you put into it. Thank you for doing what you do and being my favorite influencer!!
I love all of your content! Congrats on 6 years! Keep it up girlie!
Congrats on 6 years!! I think you are totally right about starting an IG or blog nowadays. The market is really saturated with creators and it would be tough to come into it expecting to make money day 1 or day 365. Reality show people are the exception, they usually have good luck because they are so exposed!
Nicole Brown says
Great post, and super helpful insights on staring a blog and tips about instagram.
Liz Anderson says
Congratulations on your success and thank you for sharing your passion with us!
This was really helpful! It’s crazy to think of what Instagram was like 6 years ago! It was a lot different!
Jensyn Pettit says
Congratulations on 6 years!! I always enjoy reading your blog posts 💕
Melissa Moore says
Wow, congratulations on six years of blogging! I truly enjoyed this inside look at the nuts and bolts of the process. Fun and fascinating!
Megan Thomason says
Congrats on 6 years!!!! Absolutely love your blog and following along!
Sarah Ellis says
Congratulations on six years!!! I love your blog so much!!!!
Thanks for the advice! I don’t have a blog but I do cohost a podcast and we are guilty of not posting daily. Sometimes I’m just not sure what to talk about. I will work on getting better though.
Abigail Crabtree says
I have always loved your Instagram, but honestly didn’t know you had a blog! Will definitely be reading more often! Your style is so cute!
Jennifer Gilbreath says
Congratulations on 6 years!! I used to blog and I’ve been thinking about starting it up again. I miss it so much!
Sweet Southern Wife
Abby Pannell says
Love your content! So happy you share it with us all!
Stephanie Frank says
I loved reading this post and I love following you on Instagram. I wish I had the ability to put outfits together like you do. You always look adorable!
Yvette Buergo says
I love how transparent you are. Your blog is such a fun place to spend some time reading and my alone time! I love your page and all the content you post. You’re also so beautiful inside and out! 💗🍍
This is really helpful! I did all the things to start a blog several years ago, bought the domain, bought hosting, etc. but then I never did anything with it. Maybe I should try again. Thanks for the inspiration. 🙂
Thanks for the inspiration. 🙂 I may need to revamp my blog ideas and rename it.
I have definitely contemplated starting a blog, but you have given some really solid points about things to keep in mind. Thank you!
Victoria Lynn says
Congrats on six years!! I took a break from blogging for a year but I’m excited to start creating posts again!🌸🧁
Congrats, Angela! I love reading blogging q+a’s because there is so much to learn about it! I love how every one can create there own little corner of the internet with such great platforms today 🙂 Congrats, again, on this great milestone!
Thanks so much for writing this post girl! It’s all so helpful as I’m still in the younger stages of building my blog! Congrats on six years!!
Congrats Angela! I love your content & how easy it is to read, but still detailed! Thanks for the behind the scenes info, you do an amazing job making it look all glam & easy! Cheers to you!💕🎉