How I Made My First $1,000 Blogging

This first year of blogging has been incredible, a learning process for sure full of unforgettable opportunities. Throughout this journey, I’ve been lucky enough to make a few extra dollars doing the thing I love most. This post will focus on how I’ve made an income while blogging and how you can too!

Reach Out To Brands

This is first on the list because truly I wouldn’t be making anything or receiving any free product without reaching out to brands myself. Up and coming companies are in need of people to show off their product. These brands need you as much as you need them. I’d say I’ve spent about an hour each day emailing, messaging, and calling the companies I’d be honored to work with. It’s not easy and I’ve been pushed out of my comfort zone more than I can count on one hand…even two! For every 9 no’s I get at least 1 yes which just proves I’m doing something right by putting myself out there!

In the beginning, don’t be discouraged if brands would rather collaborate on posts in exchange for product rather than payment. Establishing a connection with the company can be much more rewarding and beneficial in the grand scheme of things. Brands want to develop a trust with the people they work with and I don’t blame them! I’ve tested the waters with many companies that have now allowed me to create content on a long-term basis for real money. It’s all about proving yourself and selling the services you can provide.

Download Apps To Make Connections

I think a handful of bloggers forget about accessible free apps that can help them grow! For instance, I’ve made a few good paychecks off of apps like Popular Pays which connects Instagrammers and bloggers with real-deal brands. Companies such as Kraft, Macy’s, Chameleon Cold-Brew and so many more are listed on the app.

Once you find a brand you’d like to work with you pitch a creative idea to them, request the amount of money you’d like to make, and answer a couple of questions regarding your social platform. From there, the brands can choose to work with you or not. The process is easy and completely cost-free to the influencers!

Some other great apps and networks include SocialNative.com, Obvious.lyMaverick.co + Collabor8, and Influenster.

Establish A “Blogger Resume”

This is more of a tip but I’d highly recommend creating a blogger resume. A single document or media kit that can be sent out to potential partners and companies is important! Some things I’ve included in mine are my contact information, a collection of my best photos or written pieces, my analytics from my social platforms, and a professional photo of myself with a description of what I do best! This goes along again with…selling yourself!

Use Affiliate Links

The last and final thing I did over this last year to make my first $1,000 was using affiliate links. You can do this easily by signing up online with some of the brands you may already know and love! Personally, I’ve found the biggest return by using affiliate links through Target and Amazon. You basically earn a percentage of the purchase someone would make by using your link!

The app Reward Style also does an awesome job of simplifying the affiliate link process by putting everything you’d need in one place. You can easily search for a product and see what percentage you’d make if someone bought the product using your link, you can copy links, and keep track of your commission!

So that’s the jist of it guys! 2018 is near and now is the perfect time to make some financial moves! If you have any suggestions that I didn’t mention in this post – please leave a comment down below!

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Fort Building 101

Totally nerdy yet completely cool. Fort building is fun no matter how old you are. On a night when Riverdale was set to come on, I chose to build a blanket fort containing pillows, fairy lights, and of course a fire place. Always gotta stay classy.

Here are just a few of my tips and necessities that I think you need to know when building your own:

1) Fairy Lights 2) Hot Stuff Mug 3) Fuzzy Blanket 4) Holiday Candle 5) Silky Pajamas 6) Slippers 7) Body Pillow 8) Inexpensive Tripod

-If you have a tripod, use it. That baby can go smack dab in the middle to make for a teepee style fort. That’s what I used and it worked great!

-Use the couch. The couch is your friend and will help make your blanket fort even more epic. Push your chairs and other building materials as close to the couch as possible so you have a nice back rest from the ground.

-Twinkly lights aren’t even a question. We need those. I got mine from Target for $8! Not expensive and really tend to set the mood!

-Pack as many pillows in the fort as you can! If you have a body pillow, use it! Those are the best!

-Comfy clothes! Get dressed up in your favorite pair of sweats, pop some popcorn, dim the lights, make yourself a hot cup of cocoa and enjoy what you’ve just built!

What’s the must-have item for your fort?! I wanna know in the comments! I’m dying laughing at myself while typing this post because once again, I’m such a nerd. Maybe none of you even make forts anymore?! Let’s bring them back! If you make your own from my little guide here, be sure to tag me on Instagram so I can see!

Day In The Life + Giveaway

With work, the pups, my blog, and this crazy Chicagoland weather I hardly find the time to get outside and explore. This past Sunday, my mom, sister, and I took a few hours to spend some time in a small town near us. I thought I’d snap a few pics and tell you all a little about what we did! See below for more..

target blush slip on shoes

Before leaving, I decided to slip on my favorite pair of shoes I purchased recently. I grabbed these at Target for under $25! They were such a steal. I couldn’t resist the suede material, blush color, and the fact they’re very comfortable + so easy to slip on. I paired these with some jeans and an oversized crew neck!

target blush slip on shoes affordable light weight

Once we got into town, we wandered over to one of my favorite coffee spots, Hansa. I was so excited they had their seasonal flavor out, which of course, was pumpkin spice. I ordered an iced chai tea latte with a few pumps of pumpkin. And if you know me, you understand my slight addition to chai tea lattes lately. I’m overly obsessed!

I wasn’t able to snap a pick of my own drink but I did get this shot of my mom and sisters. I’m pretty sure they both stuck with a simple hazelnut latte. Probably equally as good as my chai I’d assume. Take a moment to appreciate this latte art!

hazelnut hot fall lattes

coffee shop chicago

After coffee I wanted to check out some of the small boutiques. I didn’t find anything I was willing to splurge on but it was cool seeing a few items I’ll be putting on my Christmas list! Speaking about the holidays, am I the only one amazed at the stores bringing out their decor earlier than expected?! Bath and Body Works already has their winter scents out! That’s just so crazy to me! Time is flying by!

building mums outdoor area lifestyle

shopping boutique downtown lifestyle

This day gifted us with the perfect Fall weather. The three of us were bundled in light sweaters and scarves but were warm enough that we could still walk outside. It was easily one of the best days of the week as far as functionality went.

With outfits and accessories on the brain, I thought I’d point out one of my go-to necklaces. I’ve been eyeballing jewelry that’s simple, elegant, whimsical, and light weight. This piece from Tiny Lumber is exactly that. The geometric design is modern and dainty + being made out of wood makes it feel like you’ve got nothing on. Don’t you hate the feeling of heaviness with some other pieces?!

I had my sister wear it with her outfit and it matched great! Tiny Lumber has so many other designs to choose from that are just as beautiful as this one so make sure to check their site out here!

Keep reading for a giveaway

tiny lumber necklace jewelry geometric

tiny lumber necklace jewelry geometric

I’m teaming up with Tiny Lumber to give one of these geometric necklaces to a lucky follower of the blog! There’s only a few rules: the winner must be a follower of ChiGoalDigger.com, you have to be following tiny_lumber on Instagram, and (so I can contact you once the contest is over) be sure to comment below your favorite city to visit with your Instagram handle! Winner will be chosen November 9th! Good luck!

tiny lumber necklace jewelry geometric

sisters downtown shopping with coffee

After being out all afternoon long, I ran home to my dogs for a little Sunday football. While I was shopping, I scooped them these frosted football pup treats! They couldn’t have been more excited and I was definitely ready to just relax. The cookies kept them occupied for quite sometime and calmed their nerves from being alone for so long! Is anyone else a devoted dog mom like I am?!

sunday football cookie treat shitzu dog

What have you all been up to lately? Is there anything during this Fall season you’d like me to try? Leave a comment below letting me know!

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