Living in Napa Valley for over a year and blogging for over four, I’ve had some wonderful opportunities to partner up with many amazing individuals and brands in the past. I gotta say, being able to support local businesses and to connect on a more personal level is always one of my favorite things to do as a blogger – something that gives what I do a special meaning.
You see, blogging is not only about taking photos of pretty things and places. To me, what matters the most is connecting and building long-lasting relationships. Especially, right here in my beloved California.
Why Support Local Businesses?
Since I get a lot of questions about blogging and where to start, I thought I will touch once again on the importance of shopping small and working with small businesses – first AND foremost. Yes, reaching for stars and big franchise is always nice, and the recognition you might get could be quintessential to you career, but working on connections right here where you live will ultimately bring you a more sustainable growth.
I cannot stress it enough. Having a personal connection and knowing the person behind the actual brand is something you shouldn’t take for granted. I know these days we try to be super efficient with our time. That is why more often than not we will rely on the Internet and social media because the virtual connection is just so instant.
However, whenever time and place allows, I strongly suggest choosing to meet in person rather than continue talking about a possible partnership over phone calls/ emails. I believe going out of your way and driving to a place of businesses to see how you vibe with the person behind the brand is priceless. Yes, sometimes it may feel intimidating. In fact, it usually is for me, but somehow I always come back from a meeting more inspired than ever.
Love what you do and you’ll never feel like working
It’s so true. Working on countless photo shoots I can honestly say there’s nothing else that gives me more joy. Yes, they usually require a lot of time from scouting locations, prepping, shooting to post-production, but when you get together with like-minded and creative souls… Well, it makes it all feel like a breeze.
Being a blogger, I get to shoot with a lot of photographers, mostly those that are local to Napa but also those who I get to meet during my work trips (see a list of them here). Connecting over mutual ideas and goals is definitely something I love and am so grateful for.
Let’s take Kayla Alaska Taylor who I recently met and shot these photos with as an example. Just a few days after we connected on Instagram, we decided to meet in person and go straight to creating something cool together. And we had a blast! We spent about 3 hours shooting different looks and it didn’t feel like work at all! I believe that even all the editing and promoting each other on social media didn’t feel like too much effort either, because we were truly excited about working together and the actual photos. Once again – support local businesses and entrepreneurs because it’s fun, exciting, special and so rewarding!
Support your local economy
That’s probably one of the most obvious reasons why you should support local businesses because it’s a valid point. Shopping small often means the products were locally sourced and created with the kind of soul that you simply can’t put a price on. Think about it. Have you ever bought something that was only sold in that one place of business or you could only get it locally? How did those purchases make you feel? Special? I thought so! It’s the same when you work with local brands and entrepreneurs.
Now, I can’t finish this post without mentioning the brand I partnered up to bring you this fall-inspired look. Malus Marcoo is a San Francisco online retail store specializing in street fashion. They were so nice to send me three pieces of clothing to style in exchange for some social media love, and well, they didn’t have to ask twice! Frankly speaking, a lot of their collection is quite high fashion in my eyes, so a bit out of my comfort zone. Nevertheless, I’m so happy with what I got and how I made these pieces work in my favor. To see the rest of the looks, check out my recent Instagram post.
TIP: Did I mention their customer service is amazing as well? When you purchase from Malus Marcoo, make sure to share how you styled their pieces on your social media and tag @malusmarcoo. They are more than happy to feature you on their Instagram account, which I think is fabulous! Plus, their feed aesthetic is so inspiring! You can check it out here.
SHOP MALUS MARCOO 20% OFF with this code: PLNSH20
Do you love to support local businesses? What is your favorite way to do so?
Tell me about your experiences! Please and thank you. 😉