I love baking.
I love vegan cuisine.
& I love writing.
Which is why I am drawn to Natalie Slater, a vegan author and creator of the wildly popular blog, Bake And Destroy. Natalie stops by Balanced Babe to share the mission behind Bake and Destroy which is to show that being vegan can be fun, non-judgmental, and approachable. She creates recipes that are fun and that can break misconceptions about vegan food – which I am dying to try!
I asked Natalie some questions which are discussed in the above webinar, but are paraphrased below:
BB: What are the steps that you took to grow Bake and Destroy and create a recognizable brand behind it?
Honestly it was pretty unintentional. It started out almost like a journal. I was a new mom and staying home with my mom and tinkering around the kitchen. The website started as a way to keep my family updated on life at home as a mom. Meanwhile I was growing popularity from my recipes and before I knew it, there were other moms reaching out and relating to me saying things like, “I’m a mom with tattoos also!” or “I’m a mom who bakes vegan recipes too!” So people started relating to me and I started gaining followers organically.
I also found that photo sharing apps helped as well, especially Instagram. Instagram is a really great way to keep growing my readership but I really just try to stay relevant and to stay active. I Don’t actually blog as much as I used to. I noticed from analytics that people are not spending as much time reading blogs, so finding other ways to get things in front of people is important.
Sometimes sharing recipes in the caption of the Instagram photo can reach a lot of people instead of blogging. So paying attention to how people are consuming content that I’m creative and being reactive to that. Trying to share news that they can use so just trying to maintain a steady flow of information via these photo sharing apps helps keeps me a leader in the space.
BB: For bloggers that use a lot of social media for promotion, how can they share their message while staying authentic to their brand?
It’s a delicate balance. The blogger in me says don’t think too much about who is consuming the content, and just write for yourself and people will naturally gravitate towards that authenticity. But, the content strategist in me wants to say don’t be self indulgent and to keep your reader in mind. These are contradicting statements but I think writing for yourself first and foremost is most important. Think: If I am reading this, will I like it? Is there something actionable here? If I look at this photo will there be some value in it for me? This will help you stay true to your personal mission.
You also need to think “is this shareable ” is this something that will bring enjoyment to your readers or social media followers? Will they smile, laugh, and hit the share button? It’s a balance but if you stick to your personal voice and write it as how you will say it in your head, it may come across as more authentic.
BB: What advice would you give yourself when you first started Bake and Destroy?
I wish I would of gotten friendly with other bloggers sooner than I did. I think a lot of bloggers could attest to the fact that a lot of us like to be behind the screen because some of us may have some social awkwardness, so blogging is great because you can meet other people but you are in the safety of your own home.
What’s nice is that you will meet other people that have the same interests and you can meet some of your best friends in the blogging industry. It’s a great community to be a part of.
If you want to meet Natalie, you can come hear her speak at our 2nd Annual BeHealthful Retreat taking place Sunday, September 27th!