Pulani Mota is a self-confessed Foodie, who describes herself as a Cupcake Addict who’s always willing to travel anywhere for Food. She is also a South African Brand Influencer who’s worked on multiple campaigns. On her blog she explores the art of enjoying food and writes reviews about things that matter to her.

How has your blog contributed to your career?

The contribution that my blog has made to my career is quite massive, especially growing my personal brand, and because of the exposure, bigger brands are starting to take notice of my blog, they seem quite proud to associate themselves with everything I stand for.

Would you say your writing style is improving?

Every Single Day actually! I started out without any idea of what I was doing but driven by a passion to express myself. Back then, I certainly didn’t have a writing style, but the more I write, the more I define and distinguish my voice.

What would make you happier as a blogger?

I don’t think anything else would ever make me happier than brands and PR companies taking professional bloggers more seriously. They don’t seem to realize that writing about their “product/client” is actual work that they need to pay for.

What has been your own favorite blog post?

My favorite blog post was when I attempted to make iDombolo; those kinds of experiences are always my favorite because that’s when I get to teach myself something new and actually discover what I’m capable of.

Why did you start your blog? What were your expectations?

I think my biggest inspiration has always been my deep passion for travel and food, and when I was Thailand, I really felt like my experiences were worth sharing. But I only started taking it seriously in April 2016.

As a blogger have you had any joint ventures?

Funny enough, I had my first joint venture when I’d just started blogging. I wrote out to Craft Parkhurst, and they accepted my request without any reservations. I’m always grateful to people who believe in me.

How long on average does it take you to write a blog post from concept to publication?

Probably a whole entire month! I really work hard on creating the best pieces of content that I know my followers will enjoy. My biggest challenge is that my blog posts involve visiting places, experimenting with different foods and talking to people, so the outcome of that usually requires a lot of elements needed to create a final content piece.

How long did it take you to find your writing voice or establish your style of writing?

I don’t think I’ve found my writing voice just yet, but I’m constantly experimenting and learning every day!


Feature Written By: Sinawo Bukani

She is a Digital Marketing Recruit at Umuzi Photo Club. She recently resigned from her corporate job as an Asset Management Associate to invest in her SuperPowers in Literary Journalism,Lifestyle Blogging and Content Marketing.

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AfroBloggers #FeatureThursdays – Anjolaoluwa Ozozoma Coker

Anjolaoluwa Ozozoma Coker is a Nigerian Blogger who now lives and studies in The United States. She’s been featured on many stages across America and was one of 31 selected students in the inaugural class to participate in the Nate Parker Summer Film Institute in 2016. Journey in the Reign began as a way to document her 20’s, but instead, it’s grown into how she expresses herself and connects with others through her art.

How have you established an audience and how do you maintain it?

Even though it’s still hard for me to actually accept that I have an audience, I’ve had to accept that there are people who really take my writing seriously.

I’ve observed that when you are transparent and honest with yourself and about your story, it becomes easier for people to gravitate towards your work. I’m also big on interaction, when someone reaches out to me, I try to let them know that their feedback is valued.

I’m the first to acknowledge that consistency in writing blog posts is one area I can improve on when it comes to maintaining my audience. Quality, rather than quantity is still my number 1 motto.

Any advice for new bloggers?

Although you might have some favourite bloggers that you follow, don’t try to imitate their voice. Feel free to observe their methods or designs, but do not be an exact copy of their craft. You should always have a unique way of telling your own story.

The one thing that I’ve learned from my brother, in the photography world is that branding is vital. If that means consulting with someone to make a unique website that fits your theme, then do it. I’m usually put off by bloggers who don’t see the need to invest in the look of their site nor their social media.

VerillyMerrily Mary penned an insightful blog post about why writers should stop referring to themselves as just ‘aspiring.’ Why aspire to be something that you already are? If you’re a writer, then write, and be free to call yourself such.

Do you have any dislikes about blogging?

Constantly being at war with telling the truth, yet fighting to accept it myself. The moment I decide to relive an experience by writing about it, I always have to remind myself that many might find comfort in knowing someone else has overcome.

Do you have a target audience in mind?

I didn’t start my blog with a target audience in mind, however over time but I’ve come to realize that a lot of young adults read my blog posts.

Have you written for any other websites?

I write for My Black Matters, it was a post about the divide between Africans in America and African-Americans.

Can you describe your online reputation?

If you saw my SnapChat, you’d think I am a baby lover with an obsession with Naija music. If you saw my Twitter and Facebook, you’d then see an activist and christian with a passion for poetry and filmmaking. If you saw my Instagram, you’d see a proud Nigerian who will defend jollof rice with a passion, and will pull out ankara dresses for the occasion. If you saw my YouTube channel, you’d see the progression of my spoken word poetry over the years.

What does your blog offers its followers?

I am Nigerian, which affects every aspect of my life, from my upbringing to the foods I consider tasty and my music choices. This spills into my writing as well. My transparency helps people see the need for connection and human interaction. I also do not hide from talking about Jesus on my blog, because I would not be able to speak with such honesty if it were not for the peace I’ve experienced as a follower of Christ.


Feature Written By: Sinawo Bukani

She is a Digital Marketing Recruit at Umuzi Photo Club. She recently resigned from her corporate job as an Asset Management Associate to invest in her SuperPowers in Literary Journalism, Lifestyle Blogging and Content Marketing.

 

Ugandan Blogger Amanya adamantly proclaims that his secret for blog success is writing about the one thing that everybody relates to … love! He regards himself as an endlessly flowing natural who has a unique way of writing. He shares his blogging journey and the discipline that has helped him become a better writer even though he is self taught

What’s the best thing a blogger can give to his readers?

Presentation:

Writing just like any other art form should be presented with utmost attention to detail. From the graphics, to the content; the punctuation, to the flow.

Consistency:

You have no right to go AWOL on your readers! As any dedicated reader will tell you, it’s disheartening when a blogger just disappears. Consistency keeps a reader hooked and connected to the blogger.

Engagement:

The Comments section should be the gist for all blog engagement. A blogger should engage the readers, air out everything that seems to not have been comprehended the way it was intended, and make a connection with the readers.

Do you have a strategy for creating visibility for your blog?

My strategy is to offer Consistency, Quality and Engagement.

I’ve managed to perfect engagement, trying intently to understand each and every reader, knowing more about them by keeping in touch.

I also pay the most critical attention to every blog post before I publish, I make it a point not to compromise on quality. I believe this has helped me connect and maintain new readers, world over.

What has been the most challenging moment in your blog content development process and why?

Apart from the frequent lulls in writing, I can’t think of many.

Perhaps this, 2016 has been that kind of year when the national mood has been low in Uganda. And most Ugandan writers just aren’t writing anymore. This keeps my morale down.

How do you hope to improve yourself in the next year?

Consistency. A piece a day would really satisfy me.

And a chronicle of Amanya is in the pipeline. There’s a lot to share. I tend to think I’m a bit wise sometimes and give great advice.

I would also like to improve on my presence on Medium, Wattpad and Tumblr.

What has been your biggest blogging frustration and what have you learnt from it?

I over censor myself. I’ve chosen not to write about politics, feminism and erotica even though I have a whole lot to share. And I feel I’m not being true to myself, to my readers and the blog.

What has been your biggest blog achievement?

Thus far it’s the number of followers really, the +250 people who think my blog is worth their time. Above that, the friends I’ve made off blogging. As far as Nigeria, India and Canada. I’ve also gotten a best friend, it’s that deep.


Feature Written By: Sinawo Bukani

She is a Digital Marketing Recruit at Umuzi Photo Club. She recently resigned from her corporate job as an Asset Management Associate to invest in her SuperPowers in Literary Journalism, Lifestyle Blogging and Content Marketing.