Forbes released a list of Web Celebs
that consisted of mostly bloggers that are making millions of of their websites. No urban blogger has made this list yet but there are a few on their way. One of them is Necole Bitchie
. She started her blog a short while ago and is already getting millions of hits a month. Blogging is big business now in our culture and we tend to turn to the blogs for up to date news.
Check out the interview below:
1 . Blogging is part of the hip-hop culture now. Paying homage to the blogs like Concrete Loop and Crunk & Disorderly that started in 2005 you are considered a late bloomer. There are so many entertainment blogs now.How did you get into blogging and how did you manage to stick out among the other late bloomers?
First, thanks for paying homage to Concrete Loop, Crunk & Disorderly and those type of sites that kind've set the tone for this whole entertainment blogging game. To make a long story short, I was in a situation where I had lost everything while trying to take risks. My career. Money. My parents. It was a dream deferred type situation and I was forced to move back home to a small town in Maryland with a relative. Feeling as though I had failed at life, I started this website as a means to pass the time away.
As far as sticking out among late bloomers, Aside from good branding, I think I've shared alot about myself and personal experiences in my blogs (maybe too much) and it helped gain an audience that was forgotten. The audience who couldn't afford that 15,000 Fendi that Beyonce was wearing or those fly $1500 Louboutins they saw C Milian wearing at the club but they sure wouldn't mind copping a knock off. LMAO! I believe that finally they had found a voice that they could relate to and that's what attracted my loyal readers early on. What people don't know is that in the first 3 months that my site was up, I was sleeping on friends couches after finally being kicked out of my relative's house. I came to Atlanta with the mentality that this site has to work because this is all I got and I'm not sending out another resume. Even throughout the course of the site growing, I always kept it real. From my cable being cut off to the dented up hooptie that I was driving at the time with no radio, no AC and two hubcaps missing. *lol!!* I never tried to be someone that I wasn't. I always stayed true to myself.
2. I had someone say to me that reading blogs are not fun anymore because the entertainers are now friends with the bloggers so it’s no drama anymore. How do you feel about that statement?
Well if you go to blogs to read drama then there are plenty of sites out there that cater to that. My blog is a collection of random celeb stories that I find interest in and things that I love to talk about with my girls. From random stuff on relationships, sex to celebrity events and gossip. I try to tie it all in together because when I look in the mirror, I am my target demographic .
I never pegged myself as a "hate" site, opinionated yes, very much but never downright hateful or drama filled. I worked in Radio before I had a blog so I had already met or became cool with half the people I blog about. I also learned early on that your network is your net worth so in the process of blogging you have to find a balance so that you don't burn bridges.
Someone that I have to give props to that has a blog is Miss Info
. She's the go-to girl in New York for exclusives, well-respected, she has a way that she reports her news, but she's still keeps great relationships and she drops her thoughts in in a way that doesn't offend. I have mad respect for her.
3. What do you think about twitter? You are considered the twitter police now (lol). How do you think it has helped your blog? I saw that you have gotten in a few twitter beefs. Do you want to address that?
Twitter is fun and games to me, just like facebook. I'm on there to entertain just like I have a blog as a form of entertainment. You can't take yourself or people too serious on there. As far as twitter beefs, I haven't been in any. The fantasia page was a fake. The Gabrielle Union page was a fake. I had a few exchanges with Bow wow and of course the infamous tweet battle between me and Jermaine Dupri but nothing worth writing home about.
If used properly, twitter can aid the growth of your site. It's connected me with atleast 10,000 people who wouldn't have known about the site otherwise and of course I put my blog feed through twitter. According to Google Analytics, Twitter is in the top 5 traffic drivers to my site which i think is amazing!
4. My site is considered a social network but I do a lot of blogging. When I was new in the game I learned that networking is the key (blog rolls), etc. What do you think about all this beefing between bloggers? How do you manage to stay positive when you read certain things about yourself?
I read an article awhile back titled "6 Ways Bloggers are like rappers " which is so true but they left out the beefing for publicity part of the article. The thing is we are very opinionated people. All of us, so there is bound to be head butting along the way. I guess it keeps the game interesting.
Reading certain things about myself...well it comes with the territory and it was something I prepared myself for as soon as I made the decision to put my image on my site. When you are as open about your life as I have been , you give people more to work with in terms of making assumptions and creating rumors which may or may not be true. All you can do is read and laugh and move on. Ironically, I'm sure the celebs that come across things said about them on blogs do or feel the same way...
5. Blogging is big money. I know you mentioned on twitter that you are trying to reach your goals. What are your goals? Do you want to be on the Forbes web “ballers” list with Perez ?
I already consider myself a web baller (as you would call it) in the sense that I've accomplished alot with little to no resources. I definitely respect Perez and the way he not only branded his site, but how he branded his name and himself. You have to respect that, however I don't want to be as huge as Perez. That's too much pressure and I've been stuck in my ways in terms of the site's content and solely writing about things that I like versus going commercial. I'm moving at my own pace and I think it's very important for people to not get caught up in the game to the point where they lose themselves.
Also I've learned that you have to be prepared for that type of success. I haven't created a strong enough team yet to acquire some of the things that I'd like but my advice to those that would like to create that type of success is this: Make sure you are prepared for all that comes with accepting that first hundred thousand dollar or million dollar check because as soon as you obtain that type of popularity and that type of money is exchanged between hands, it's so easy to get lose sight of your original plans and most of all yourself. I don't plan on taking any trips to Africa anytime soon (i.e. Dave Chappelle) to regroup. You have to move at your own pace and you can't get caught up in trying to live up to everyone else's expectations. I'm saying all this to say “Do YOU!”
6. Since my site focuses on the whole groupie and baller thing. Do you have groupies?
No I don't think so. A celeb said to me one day "Your fans go hard for you" and it felt weird to hear that because I don't really consider those people groupies, fans or anything like that. I do appreciate the fact that there are people that RIDE for me and been riding for me since Day one. I get up every day and blog with those people in mind.
7. What is the craziest story you ever received? Did you post it?
I've received some crazy stories about folks like Ciara, some music exec and of course screen caps of an infamous sex tape from a rapper's wife has reached my inbox. I can go on and on but when it's really defamatory and it's not proven to be true, I normally don't post. I wouldn't want people to do the same to me.
8. You use to have a donate button on your site. What was the biggest donation you received and why did you remove it?
I still have the donate button. LOL! The biggest donation was $1250 when I was just starting out.
9. Any advice for people that want to blog for a living? Please explain how many hours you have to put into it.
At one point blogging was a 24/7 thing for me. I felt like i was working, even when just hanging with friends, partying or I had to be the first to post as soon as news broke. Thank God I don't do that anymore. Now I put at least 40 hours in and treat it like it's a real job. I run the site as if it's a business, that means marketing, handling advertising, business proposals, meetings, travel and the whole nine.
10. Do you see blogging as a long term goal? Do you want to move into something else? If so what?
It's interesting that you asked that because my one year anniversary passed in December and I was thinking about shutting the site down. I was growing tired because I didn't have any real direction and still hadn't found my voice. Then I remembered my resume was all over the place showing that I had jumped from job to job so who would hire me? I decided my best bet was to just keep it up..lol
When I'm done with the site, I'll probably work as a ghost blogger and handle new media for various artists and entertainment companies. Right now, I have no idea what the future holds but I'm just enjoying the ride.
Follow Necole on twitter: www.twitter.com/necolebitchie