Date Posted: Thursday 1st March 2018
Former HELLO! beauty editor, Nadine Baggott from The Beauty Know It All, has signed to leading digital talent management company Gleam Futures for representation. The agency, which also represents digital talent including Zoella, Victoria Magrath from In The Frow and Caroline Hirons, will be working with Nadine on all of her commercial and presenting partnerships across all categories as well as her non-commercial projects and partnerships. Nadine will continue to consult for brands as a renowned industry expert as she has done for many years independently.
DIARY directory caught up with beauty vlogger Nadine to find out why Gleam Futures are the right fit for her, what she thinks about the future of print and her opinions on the under-representation of older women in the industry.
|Date of Birth:||7 July 1962|
|Country of residence:||UK|
|Biggest Readership Locations:||UK, then US and Canada, Australia, Europe (Ireland, Germany, Sweden, Netherland, France)|
|3 main areas of focus:||Beauty, Health, Wellbeing|
|Skin tone/type:||Normal, ageing, balanced|
|Hair colour:||Grey but blonde|
|Hair type:||Fine, prone to fizz|
|Who are your audience?||93% female, all ages actually but key are 25 to 45 +|
What made you take the plunge to leave your full-time journalism role & focus on The Beauty Know It All?
A friend of mine ran the Global Digital PR and Marketing for Maybelline out of New York and over lunch five years ago, she said to me, "Traditional media is dying, you need to go digital or lose your voice." I remember laughing and thinking that she was exaggerating and then her prediction slowly came true. The digital movement started gaining pace and I had to be an idiot to ignore it...
Even now, to be honest, I’m still not sure that most magazines or TV stations really get it, so it made sense to create my own platform. My years of writing for newspapers and magazines and being a TV presenter are invaluable because I can find and visualise a story and angle, edit the relevant information for my community and communicate it in minutes. And I enjoy that process. I have had to teach myself to film and light and edit, which was totally out of my comfort zone, but my argument is my channel motto; ‘If I can do it then so can you...'
It was tough for a couple of years because sometimes I felt like I was talking into the abyss and not many people were listening, but then my numbers started growing. I realised that, just as I suspected, there was a huge demand for a YouTube channel for, what I call, beauty grown ups, from an insider expert who had grown up and grown older in the beauty business.
You’ve just signed with Gleam - Exciting!
I am very excited to be part of their family. A lot of the people that I admire on YouTube are with Gleam and they are committed to growing their business to include my age group. They understand that it is not just about numbers, but engagement and authenticity.
I remember their founder Dom speaking to me right at the beginning of my channel and telling me that he had his eye on me and what I was creating and I was amazed and flattered. I approached them late last year and was politely told that they only signed digital first talent, to which I replied, “Well, I’ve just handed my notice in at HELLO! to concentrate on my YouTube channel.” and at that moment they realised that I was serious about what I was doing; and that this is not some vanity project for me. I know that there is a huge untapped market for what I stand for and represent.
Gleam are an impressive global business; they cover brand partnerships, publishing, have a podcast division, an office in LA and Sydney, and they appreciate and understand what I am trying to do.
You say that age is no barrier to looking good, and there seems to be under-representation in the industry of women over a certain age - is this changing & what have been your experiences?
I had no idea I was being ageist when I was young, so I don’t judge young people for being so around me. The beauty industry is ageist like the rest of the world, but my generation are one of the first to shout about it.
There are both sociological and economic reasons for this; we grew up surrounded by powerful, opinionated women like Madonna so we were never going to disappear into the sunset quietly like our mothers. Far more importantly, the over fifties have real economic power; we outspend the under fifties and we are increasing in number. In other words businesses can no longer afford to be ageist.
The over fifty market currently spends £120 billion a year on discretionary shopping and that’s set to rise to £187 billion in five years time. What business wouldn’t want to target me? “Ageless” companies that sell interiors and cars and holidays are cleaning up and now it’s time for the beauty business to realise where the money and spending power is, and to understand that, as a consumer group, we are more loyal; so win us over and we will stick with you. At this point I feel like President Obama when he did that mic drop. You can’t argue with what I’m saying; it just is.
How do you go about planning your content & what posts resonate most with your followers?
I often follow my journalistic instincts for what is innovative, but I also listen to my community and track my most popular videos. Skincare, not surprisingly, resonates, but so does tutorial based hair care and ageless makeup, and product reviews also go down well. But I intend to cover wellness, travel, health, fitness; to be a reflection of my interests.
The media landscape has changed dramatically since you started in your career, what do you think the future holds for print?
Oh, very sadly print is struggling to survive, but we have to ensure that standards of journalism do not die with it. Online journalism, reporting and content should be held to the same exacting standards as print. I hope that, even in a small way, some form of printed magazine journalism lives on, even as an adjunct to an online presence.
Rise on influencers is on the up, how do you see this arena developing?
I see no end to the rise of the so called influencers, although I dislike that term. I will always be a journalist, I am now a digital journalist. Interestingly my YouTube channel informs my journalism; having direct access to so many women asking questions and wanting advice gives me priceless knowledge of and insight into what women want from their beauty products and regimens.
What have been the biggest lessons you’ve learnt since starting out on your own? What are the biggest challenges you face?
I’ve been self employed for a long time so I learned to be self motivated decades ago to meet weekly deadlines; it’s just that now I create two videos a week instead of four features. What’s strange perhaps is that most of my content does not earn me any income. That’s a different mindset. So I have to be confident that brands will want to work with me to create editorial style sponsored content.
Any irritations about the blogging community?
Traditional media and journalists have no right to critique bloggers or YouTubers without first trying to create their own digital content. None of it is as easy as it looks. I remember Sam from Pixiwoo saying to me, ‘I had no idea how hard it was to write a book, how do you do it every day?” And I replied, “I had no idea how hard it was to have a YouTube channel.” We have mutual respect for each other. And there wouldn’t be a desire for new media if traditional old school media was doing a perfect job. That said a little fact checking wouldn’t go amiss in the digital world.
What would be a dream collaboration that hasn’t yet presented itself?
I don’t dream of collaborating with brands but with media partners to get the biggest audience. Every day I get messages from women saying, “Thank heavens I found you, it’s like you’re speaking just to me, and you cut through the hype to give honest and informed advice.” I just want to reach more of those women and men.
When collaborating with a brand commercially how do you find the right creative balance?
For me it really is second nature. I urge brands to trust me because it is my job to communicate, educate, inform and to entertain; that’s what I’ve been doing my entire career. I hate the hard sell, I distrust patronising brand messages and marketing speak and so do my community. And I turn down brand partnerships if they are not authentic. I speak out openly against miracles in jars and super expensive skincare, why would I partner with a brand that is selling woo and hype? I’m not in this for short term gain, this is a career for me.
What are your current beauty faves?
My skincare staples have not changed; I most often recommend brands that are transparent in what they offer and have targeted formulations that problem solve. I am a science geek so love brands based in dermatology. I admire skincare companies that are plain talking. I am very much on board with everything L’Oreal Paris are trying to do to be more inclusive of all women of all ages and know that soon other companies with follow suit. And I like high street disruptive brands on a budget. Women shop beauty in the same way they shop fashion and interiors, a little high street, some online, some designer. I care more about the performance of a product than the price.
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