Drew Barrymore with Eva Chen at the west coast Lucky FABB conference in AprilOctober 24 and 25 marks the 6th Lucky Fashion and Beauty Blog conference, and the first under the direction of editor-in-chief Eva Chen. As a stylish social media maven, Chen handpicked top influencers in fashion, beauty, and tech who would provide helpful tips and inspire over 300 "lucky" chosen attendees with the hope of launching the next generation of superstar bloggers. This year's list of speakers includes Lucky's October cover star, Eva Mendes; the magazine's November cover star, Kate Bosworth; supermodel Coco Rocha; co-founder and co-CEO of eyewear company Warby Parker Neil Blumenthal; Donna Karan's senior vice president of global communications Aliza Licht; and top bloggers Leandra "Man Repeller" Medine, Bryanboy, and Emily Weiss. We caught up with Chen for insight into building your own blogger identity, the latest style and tech innovations, and who she's got her eye on in the social sphere. (Complete Lucky FABB info is at the end of this post.)
Yahoo Shine: What is your main objective as the leader of this event for the first time?
Eva Chen: This is my first Lucky FABB conference and I've always admired and loved the mission statement of it and bringing all these up-and-coming fashion and beauty bloggers together. For me, I happened to be in L.A. for the last conference, so I sort of went through it and it was a great experience. My main objective as someone who is putting this event together for the first time is I want the bloggers to walk away and be like, "These are the tips and tricks and information that I couldn't have gotten anywhere else." There are so many people that I follow everywhere and when I curated the group I wanted it to be people that not only teach people the best tricks and tips and how to create your unique editorial voice, but also people who would inspire. I feel very lucky in my career to have been able to meet founders or amazing tech companies and cash companies, whether it's Jess [Lee] from Polyvore or Neil [Blumenthal] from Warby Parker. Both of those are good examples of people who I met that I struck up friendships with as I heard the story of how they started their companies. I wish I had been able to hear that when I was in my early 20s. It just opens your mind up to the possibility of, like, OK, I may be starting with a fashion or beauty blog, but maybe I can create the next fill-in-the-blank.
Designer Betsey Johnson at a past Lucky FABB conferenceY.S.: How can an individual stand out amongst a sea of bloggers?
E.C.: It feels like there's a lot of noise out there. There's so many of them, what makes them special? For me, what is really important—and I think you'll see when you look at the list of people presenting and speaking—is developing your own original voice and your own original point of view. There are hundreds of thousands of personal style blogs out there, but what sets a blogger apart and how do you have that special sauce and special sparkle that makes you stand out in a sea of blogs? Everyone is chasing the video aspect, and I think video is important so I'm happy that we have things like Instagram with videos that help bring someone's personality to life.
Y.S.: As someone with a strong personal social presence, what do you think magazines can learn from style blogs and bloggers?
E.C.: I'm incredibly inspired by the digital landscape in general from bloggers and the culture of tech and kind of the feeling of startups and how they don't seem to have any limits and they're up for trying and experimenting with different things. That's something that the magazine industry in general could learn from the tech world. There are so many bloggers that I follow on Instagram or Vine or Twitter and I'm constantly inspired by these young women in the industry and the way they put their outfits together - established bloggers like Leandra Medine or Emily Weiss, or up-and-coming ones where I want everything they wear.
Y.S.: How do you see people incorporating new technology into style blogging?
E.C.: Video is an emerging medium, everyone's trying to chase it. Creating a lifestyle is what bloggers are trying to do right now. Yes you post [pictures of] your bag and shoes, and I always admit that I'm guilty of that as well, but how does that reflect on the way you live, and the way you see life, and your philosophy? That permeates every single platform whether it's Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram. I love Google hangouts, they're my new favorite thing. They've been around for a while, but I think they're gaining momentum and it's awesome. The CFDA is partnering with designers for shoppable hangouts.
Y.S.: Which form of social media do you think best lends itself to the fashion and beauty space?
E.C.: It depends. I feel like people should use different platforms in different aspects of their life. Instagram is the best for posting really delicious, "oh my gosh, I love this" or "oh my gosh, I wish I was there" moments. Photography, cool people, cool places. Twitter, for someone like Leandra [Medine] or Bryanboy, for instance, who has such an original voice and wit, that's the platform for them because they're able to make one-liners and capture your personality in 140 characters. Tumblr is great for more involved posting. The most important thing - and I hope we can help teach people this - is to be strategic about the different platforms and utilize them for their audience.
Style expert and Barney's creative ambassador Simon Doonan with designer Anna Sui at a prior conferenceY.S.: What tips do you have for someone who is just getting started as a style blogger?
E.C.: They should look at every platform and figure out how to use them to reflect their point of view and their voice. I do think it helps when there's a hook in the beginning. When I first started on social media I was a beauty editor and - I mean you know about the sheer current-slash-waterfall of beauty products that came your way - my point of view was always sharing beauty products, or if I reviewed them or thought about them, and also my addiction to shoes and bags. My other tip is consistancy. If you look at someone's Instagram and their last post was three weeks ago, like, no you can't do that.
Y.S.: Which under-the-radar style bloggers are your current obsession?
E.C.: I'm looking at my Instagram feed now. There's someone named Denni Elias. I have no idea who this person is, honestly. She posts great pictures, so she's someone on my radar. She also seems to go to the best parties, so I'm like, "Who is this girl?" I follow the model Jessica Hart. I love her style, and her energy is so happy. It makes you happy as well. I started following this social media editor in Thailand, Ploy Chava. She has a fun, cool energy and I met her when I was in Paris. There's a stylist named Julia Sarr. I am obsessed with her style and every time I see her on the street it's one of those moments where you look at them and do a slow nod, like, she looks really good.
And now for the Lucky FABB event info!Day one of the conference is comprised of a series of panels and keynotes featuring industry leaders. Day two will feature breakout sessions to provide bloggers with the tools they need to build their businesses.
Panels and Participants Include:Community ROI: Turning Your Readers into Your Advocates
· Verena von Pfetten, Executive Digital Editor, Lucky
· Alisa Gould-Simon, Founder, Pose
· Gabi Gregg, Blogger, GABIFRESH
· Erica Domesek, Founder, P.S. I Made This…A conversation with Bryanboy
· Hosted by Eva ChenFive Mistakes You Don't Want to Make
· Hayley Phelan, Fashion News Editor, Lucky
· Lindsey Calla, Fashion Blogger and Stylist, Saucy Glossie
· Amber Venz, Blogger and Founder, RewardStyle
· Mattias Swenson, CEO and Co-Founder, Bloglovin'
Where to Post What: Which Social Media Platforms Are Best for Your Content?
· John Jannuzzi, Senior Digital Projects Editor, Lucky
· Aliza Licht, SVP Global Communications, DKNY
· Suzanne Schloot, Social Media Manager, Kate Spade New York
· Amy Cole, Brand and Content Strategy, Instagram
· Stephanie Horton, Chief Marketing Officer, Farfetch
Day two breakout sessions include:
Beauty Scoop: Insider Secrets from the Pros brought to you by COVERGIRL, Olay, Pantene and Secret
· COVERGIRL Celebrity Makeup Artist, Jake Bailey
Maintaining Editorial Integrity While Monetizing brought to you by Rakuten LinkShare
· Stephanie Taylor, US Digital Marketing & eCommerce Manager, ASOS
· Meg Mahoney Dusil, Co-Founder & CEO, Purseblog
· Amber Melhouse, Director Business Development, Rakuten LinkShare
· Lindsey Eis, Senior Manager Client Services, Rakuten LinkShare
Coding Basics: HTML for Fashion and Beauty Bloggers
· Nathan Bashaw, Product Development, General Assembly
2014: Planning Your Editorial Calendar for the Year Ahead
· Elana Fishman, Senior Digital Editor, Lucky
· Jordan Reid, Blogger, Ramshackle Glam
Staying True To Your Voice
· Leigh Belz Ray, Deputy Editor, Lucky
· Leandra Medine, Founder, The Man Repeller
Grow Your Traffic With Our Tried-And-True SEO Checklist (Beginner and Advanced)
· Raman Kia, Executive Director of Integrated Strategy, Conde Nast
Quit Your Day Job - It's Time to Be a Pro Blogger
· Laura Kosann, Co-Founder, The New Potato
· Danielle Kosann, Co-Founder, The New Potato
· John Jannuzzi, Senior Digital Projects Editor, Lucky
Founders Series: How I Made It
· Katia Beauchamp, Co-Founder, Birchbox
· Jess Lee, Co-Founder and CEO, Polyvore
· Neil Blumenthal, Co-Founder and Co-CEO, Warby Parker
· Emily Weiss, Founder and Creative Director, Into The Gloss
· Coco Rocha, Model and Blogger
· Michelle Adams, Editor-in-Chief, Domino
· Tamara Mellon, OBE, Entrepreneur
· Deena Varshavskaya, Founder and CEO, Wanelo
For tickets and updated information visit Luckymag.com