What inspired you to start a business, and what were the first couple of years like starting a business in NY?
When I was in the second trimester of my pregnancy, my husband and I packed our bags and moved from Phoenix to Brooklyn. We said goodbye to all of our family, friends, and our life there and settled into our new home on the east coast. I was the first of all my friends to get pregnant, and while I found myself away from everyone and everything I knew, I ached for community. I really wanted to talk to someone about my experience and develop relationships with other moms who understood. So the idea of a blog was born - with the help of my good friend and photographer, Amy Frances. Household Mag came to life in July of 2015.
What are the different ways, as a blogger, that you generate revenue?
I honestly didn’t start Household Mag to make money, so when free products and offers started coming my way I really had to be thoughtful on navigating it all and learn exactly how I could make the business profitable. Today, Household Mag brings in revenue from sponsored posts, our online shop, the podcast, and the occasional “real person” modeling gig!
What are the most rewarding parts of running Household Mag?
Since my son was born in September of 2015, I admit I’ve done a little job hopping to contribute to our household and take care of him without the luxury of childcare. When Household Mag really began to pick up steam last year and it became clear I would have the opportunity to do what I love and take care of my son, I was over the moon (and still am). Waking up each day with a flexible schedule - time carved out for writing and creativity and time to really soak up these toddler years - still blows me away. I am beyond grateful to have this opportunity and to connect with so many other wonderful mothers through the blog each and every day.
Talk to us about the amazing collaborations you've done this year. How did you sync up with those companies? And what did your favorite collaboration look like?
Gosh, in the past year I’ve been so lucky. I’ve had the opportunity to work with Google, Gap, Madewell, West Elm, The Feedfeed, Old Navy, HBO, Kind Snacks, and then some on many wonderful projects. These collaborations came together in a number of ways. Some I sent a cold email to; others were facilitated by a marketing agency; the rest reached out to me directly. Of course, my favorite collaborations are the ones where the brands put full faith in me and my direction and allow me to really tell our story.
What would you like to see your blog turn into over the next five years? What are your goals for it, and how do you see it growing over this time?
This year we are really hoping to expand into more travel opportunities. My husband is in the process of leaving his corporate job for freelance writing and we feel that it is such a unique opportunity to have the flexibility to work from anywhere with our son. When I look at the bigger picture, I’d love to see Household Mag take on a broader range of topics. While I always want there to be an element of my personal voice, I see the blog and podcast taking on a more general voice that can relate to even more women and mothers as we grow. I’ve been lucky to have found an audience that can relate to our story, but I think there’s more out there to connect on, learn about, and explore.
What advice do you have for people who are interested in starting a blog that operates as a business?
Know who you are and learn when to say “yes” and when to say “no.” I’ve always been a bit of a “yes woman,” and while that can have it’s benefits, I started making money when I started saying “no.” Finding confidence in yourself and your brand can be difficult, but it’s essential to the creative process and your business.
Hailey Marie Andresen is the founder of Household Mag., a company featuring the documentation of her life as a wife and new mother, a shop of household goods, and a podcast called Mom and Dad Made a Podcast.