It’s been a crazy few weeks preparing for start of the new term and getting back to a routine after summer, but in-between all the madness I had the pleasure of speaking with Hampshire Mum Laura who writes an incredible blog called Dear Bear and Beany. I am sure many of you will have come across her site but if you have yet to discover it I recommend you take look as it is packed with amazing reviews, mummy insights and lovely stories about her family life. Open and honest, it is one of my favourite blogs.
Laura was kind enough to speak with me about what it is like to be a successful Mummy Blogger and how she is able to manage writing the posts around her family life. If you are interested in blogging or flexible work read on:
Question 1 Would you mind telling me a little bit about yourself and your career before you launched Dear Bear and Beany. I’m Laura and I am married to Andy and we have two daughters, Alice and Holly. My previous jobs have been in Internal Communications and Employee Experience, which I loved and I did this until I had Holly.
Question 2 What inspired you to start a blog and long have you been doing it for? I first thought about writing a blog when I was on maternity leave with Alice 5 years ago, but I just wasn’t brave enough to go ahead. I kick myself now as I absolutely love it! I’ve been blogging now for 20 months.
Question 3 Where did the name for your blog come from? The name was an easy one for me, as it is my girl’s nicknames that we still use now.
Question 4 Dear Bear and Beany covers parenting life and your family adventures, do you find it challenging being so open about your life online? When I started blogging I didn’t really think about people actually reading it. Which may seem a bit strange, but I was writing for me and to have a record of our family memories for us. I have wobbles at times about it, but I think that is only natural in the online world. I hope the girls will look back and enjoy reading about their childhood.
Question 5 How do you juggle your work life with family life and do you have any tips for others working mums on how to achieve a good balance? I don’t really see my blog as a job. I only blog when Holly is either napping or at preschool for 1 morning a week. Otherwise I do it in the evenings when they are both asleep. As my blog has grown I have been lucky to work with some wonderful brands and in that respect it has crossed the line slightly in becoming a job and maybe one day in the future I will be lucky enough that it will become that when both girls are at school next year.
Question 6 Your social media channels are incredibly successful with nearly 7000 Twitter Followers, 5000 Instagram followers – has this taken a lot of work to achieve these numbers? Does it take a lot of your time? Twitter just seems to grow by itself and I don’t really focus any effort into it. Instagram is a tough one! It used to be fairly easy to grow, but then Facebook took over and changed the algorithm. Since then it’s really hard to get your posts seen to your followers and new people. It is my favourite social media platform and my happy place. It’s where I put most of time in and it can be hard to have the right photo for IG.
Question 7 I see you work with a number of well-known brands, do you companies approach you or do you have to do the hustle? Everyone I’ve worked with have approached me and I am always really touched that they want to work with me and my family.
Question 8 What has been your greatest achievement so far? In my life or my blog? In my life, it’s to have found my husband, who is my rock and our beautiful daughters. For my blog, it was when I first opened up about my post-natal depression and the response I received. I was really nervous pressing the publish button on that post, but the comments, emails and messages that I received from people telling me how it has helped them is just incredibly powerful.
Question 9 What do you think sets your blog apart from all the other mummy blogs out there? I don’t really think about it or compare myself. I write for me and try to just focus on what I am doing. We are all just sharing our life and on a different journey, there is room for everyone.
Question 10 Do you think there is still room for new mummy bloggers? If so do you have any tips for anyone thinking of taking this path? Ha Ha, as I just said, yes, I think there is room for everyone.
Make sure you are clear on why you are starting your blog, if you are writing it for you and to have your own family memories to look back on then remember this and don’t look sideways. If you have seen other bloggers and think that you want to make money from it, then that is fine but be very clear that it takes A LOT of hard work. Many bloggers that have made it their career have been doing it a long time and spend a lot of time on it. It doesn’t happen overnight.
When I started writing my blog I had no idea that you could make this a career, that people were paid or received items to review etc. It was eye opening for me, but I still do it because I love writing about my family life and anything that comes along is an added bonus.
Question 11 Do you have a standout blogging moment? I touched on it early, it was definitely sharing my posts about post-natal depression. It can be a bit overwhelming to think that your words, your life, your experience has helped someone. But it is also incredibly lovely to know that is has. It just shows the power of blogging.
Question 12 In your opinion is vlogging the future for bloggers? Is this something you enjoy? (I see you have posted a few videos on Youtube) Vlogging is definitely becoming bigger and brands are looking for people that can offer both. I love doing it, but it takes up a lot of time and at the moment my time is precious. I definitely want to start doing more vlogs and expanding this.
Visit Laura on Social Media: