Anyone that follows me on social media knows how much I love taking pictures. Well now that Sanai is apart of the equation, she’s joined me in my madness lol. My all time favorite hobby these days is taking pictures and capturing videos of my sweet Sanai. And I’ve learned that taking pictures and making videos is quite possibly a hobby of hers too. Crazy, I know! It has always amazed me how she seems to “turn it on” when she’s in front of the camera. And by camera, I mean my iPhone 7. When she sees the flash, her eyes light up, she smiles and giggles, and it’s so precious that it almost makes my heart stop! Since she was just about 4 months old, I swear she started “posing” for the camera. At first I thought I was just getting lucky, but then I noticed that she was actually alert and paying attention when I would take pictures of her. After a while, I figured I would try and put her into modeling since she was so comfortable in front of the camera. So I sent off some pictures to a few modeling agencies and I never heard anything back. I honestly had so much going on that I didn’t think twice about it.
Then it occurred to me that I should start her an Instagram page. I figured I would start the page and ask my followers to support- it sounded like a perfect idea. All of my friends would follow Sanai’s page and her follower count would skyrocket. Well, it didn’t quite happen that way lol. I have over 3,000 followers on my personal Instagram page and I’d say about 175 of them followed Sanai’s personal page. I was a bit disappointed at first, but then I just figured I would grind it out and build her followers from the ground up. So I started posting my regular everyday pictures of Sanai from my iPhone onto her page. She didn’t really get a whole lot of engagement, but I didn’t care, I kept posting.
One day while I was scrolling through Instagram, I stumbled across this small boutique on Instagram that was having a “brand rep search” on their page. I didn’t really know what it entailed, but I figured it would get Sanai some exposure. I entered her in the search and she didn’t get chosen. No biggie, I figured there had to be more shops looking for reps/ ambassadors…and I was right. After doing a little digging, I realized what a brand rep was and what the process entailed. Basically, small (or sometimes big) shops/boutiques on IG have brand reps/ brand ambassadors to help promote their shops and increase their sales in exchange for quality photos of the items, discounts and some freebies. They choose a team of about 15-20 babies (sometimes more) and they start a team. Most of them have a particular set of rules that you must follow as being a part of their team. For example, one shop may give all of their brand reps a 50% discount and one free item per purchase, but the rep must make three purchases per term, they must post 4 quality and clutter free photos per item purchased, and they must post all sales and promos for the boutique on their IG page. So basically its a win-win for everyone.
After doing a bit more research and browsing through instagram, I learned that the “Brand Repping World” was a lot more complex than I thought. Some mom’s do this as a full time job and a lot of stay at home moms are heavily involved in the brand repping community. So it’s that much more pressure for me being a full time mom and working full time. Many people think shops and boutiques are simply looking for cute babies to wear their clothes and I was guilty. I have to admit, I thought that Sanai would surely get chosen every single time because she’s “so cute!”as everyone would tell me. Well, I was wrong. Being cute is great, but these shops are looking for accounts with quality, clutter free photos, and are posting on Instagram and engaging with their followers on a consistent basis. Taking low quality pictures of your cute babies with all types of crap in the background does nothing to help these shops/ boutiques. They want an exchange!! I knew then that my cute Snapchat photos with all Sanai’s toys in the background weren’t going to cut it. I looked around at some of the top baby brand reps and paid attention to their Instagram accounts. I could see that their mommies were planning photo shoots, that they had taken some photography editing classes and their pages all had “the look” of quality and cohesiveness on their feeds. For a while I got discouraged and thought I could never find the time to really focus on this. I looked at those other pages and was afraid that I would never get to that level. And then I woke up!! I’m Courtney. I’m Sanai’s mommy. I’m super woman. I can do anything!! And there it was. I was going to figure this thing out- some way, somehow. Aside from blogging purposes, this was the main reason I purchasedt a professional camera. I ended up going with the Canon EOS Rebel T6. I absolutely love the camera, and though I’m learning more about it everyday, I am still very much a rookie in the photography world. I’ll be taking an editing class next month because I will get the hang of this by the close of this year! In short, I now have a second full time job, pray for me lol.
Anyway, Sanai is now repping for 5 small shops that I adore, she’s moving on up! I’ve also met so many Brand Repping mommies in these few short months of her being an ambassador. They’ve all been so helpful and we have a little support system within each other. We have engagement pods, we share photo tips/ tricks, and we tag each other anytime a shop is having a brand rep search. And guess what, I finally took Sanai outside for a photoshoot and I am blown away at how great the pictures came out!! It’s amazing to me how serious she is in these pictures when she’s naturally the silliest little thing lol. This is just the beginning for us and I honestly feel like sky is the limit. Sanai’s instagram is here if you want to follow her! Now check out a few of her shots from our mini photo shoot below and let me know how you think we did in the comments. Leave any photography/ editing tips or classes in the comments too please. Btw, I got this super cute romper from Ava’s Little Boutique, one of the shops Sanai’s reps for 🙂