Exclusive Interview with Sergio Ines – editor of ‘WhatMyBoyfriendWore’ tells us how he started his business and career
Who are you and what do you do?
I guess my job title would be ‘influencer’, though to be honest, I really hate that term, I find it a bit pretentious. I prefer referring to myself as the editor of a gentleman’s fashion and lifestyle portal called What My Boyfriend Wore.
Tell us about the first 5 years of your career?
This particular career is just short of 5 years to be honest, I used to work as a creative Director in the advertising industry for the last 15 years. For the last 4 years I have moonlighted as the editor of What My Boyfriend Wore, taking it full time since the start of 2017. The first 2 years were possibly the easiest, it was a hobby with very little pressure and I was an early adopter so my audience grew relatively quickly. I like to think I was in the right place at the right time, just as men’s fashion started taking off and the ‘dapper’ look was all the rage. When the numbers started growing and I started collaborating with brands, the pressure began to turn up a little, all of a sudden I had content strategies to put in place and deadlines to meet. Eventually in it’s 4th year I was pretty much running 2 full time jobs, both very demanding and in turn creating a lot of stress. I eventually decided to take a leap of faith and quit my 9-5 in order to focus all my attention on my passion. I haven’t regretted it yet.
How did you get started in this?
5 years ago, my girlfriend at the time was a well-known blogger, she really thought I had something to share with the world when it came to men’s fashion and thought I should join the blogging community. I personally wasn’t convinced.
“who cares about what I’m wearing” I would argue.
She eventually started the Instagram account ‘what my boyfriend wore’ and after a massive response, I started the blog and other social platforms a couple of months later. The rest as they say, is history.
How did you transition from that to what you are doing now?
The beginning was all experimental, and naive I guess. I would talk about whatever I wanted to talk about, shooting randomly with an iPhone, uploading sporadically with no real thought to social media best practice, etc.
As with all business however, you learn as you go and so I learnt from my mistakes and even more from my success. I put in a lot of work at engaging with and growing my audience by replying to every comment and reaching out to like-minded accounts. As time went by and I started collaborating with brands, I needed to find a way to stay true to my voice (and my audience) while still meeting the brands objectives.
Again, an exercise in trial and error. Not only did I have to become a lot more organised – not a creative’s strong suite – but I also needed to up my skill level, if I wanted to compete on a global scale, great outfits were no longer enough. I needed to up the quality of my content, better pictures and better articles. This evolution has lead me to where I am today, when I look back at some of the early What My Boyfriend Wore stuff I cringe, but I’m incredibly proud with how far its come and where it is at the moment. I never stop pushing though, so I hope to look back in another 5 years and cringe at the work we’re doing today.
Read part-2 of Sergio’s interview here.