‘Lifestyle expert’ offers bloggers opportunity to share ideas and build community
By Daniel Barnes
No one asked Kachet Jackson-Henderson to create The Blog Bloc, a group that provides education, support, resources and networking opportunities for local bloggers.
A veteran fashion blogger under the name Lipstick Giraffe and a self-styled “marketing strategist, content creator, lifestyle expert,” Jackson-Henderson simply saw that a disconnection existed—and created a connection.
“There was a big blogging community in Sacramento when I started, but there wasn’t any structure or organization to tie it all together,” she says.
That desire to connect with people is the reason that Jackson-Henderson created Lipstick Giraffe in 2011. “I started blogging as Lipstick Giraffe with no images, didn’t even identify myself and it wasn’t a fashion focus,” she says. “I did it to look for friends and connections.”
Born and raised in Sacramento, Jackson-Henderson graduated from San Jose State University with a degree in public relations before moving back home in 2013 to work for the Downtown Sacramento Partnership. As Lipstick Giraffe expanded to include more images and posts about fashion, Jackson-Henderson’s accessible personality and inclusive message began to win her followers.
“I think she has a quality about her personally and in her brand that feels very relatable,” says Rebecca Plumb, a local interior and graphic designer, and host of CreativeMornings Sacramento. “She makes it so that people feel like they can access the things that she’s promoting.”
Soon enough, Jackson-Henderson was appearing in fashion segments on “Good Day Sacramento” and contributing to local publications, while the Sacramento News & Review put her on the cover of their Best of Sacramento issue in 2015.
For the self-described “extroverted introvert,” the transition from anonymity to getting recognized at restaurants and coffee shops was something of a shock. “I’ve been very blessed, and sometimes things happen to me and I still don’t understand why or how,” she says.
Describing her brand as “aspirational but attainable,” Jackson-Henderson largely targets the creative modern woman in her 30s, but lately she finds herself getting recognized by older women in the suburbs. “It doesn’t have to be millennials,” she says. “I’m inspiring women to live beautifully, dress well and shine.”
She draws inspiration from the memory of her mother, who died when Jackson-Henderson was 14, as well as from small acts of courage. “Anyone who has the guts to try something new, that is very inspiring to me,” she says.
The idea for The Blog Bloc—celebrating its second anniversary this month—first occurred to Jackson-Henderson back in 2014. But it wasn’t until she was flush with inspiration from Alt Summit, a conference for creative entrepreneurs and social media influencers, that she finally took the leap in April 2017.
“They were talking about various people in your community who could either support you or deter you from achieving your goals,” she says. “I thought it would be awesome to have something like this at home, but on a regular basis.”
Composed of bloggers, influencers, industry professionals, social media strategists and mere enthusiasts, The Blog Bloc’s members gain access to biweekly meetups, quarterly workshops and monthly mixers with a guest speaker and group discussion moderated by Jackson-Henderson.
“It’s a good place to not only share ideas and learn something from our speakers, but it’s also nice to just build community, talk to one another,” she says. The events are usually split evenly between members and nonmembers.
“She’s not always claiming to know everything about everything, even though she does know a lot and has a lot of experience,” says Plumb, who has attended several The Blog Bloc events. “She’s never talking down to anyone.”
The Blog Bloc members also access Jackson-Henderson’s wealth of experience in content optimization and brand representation. “A lot of bloggers don’t understand general business,” she says. “They could be leaving money on the table in so many ways.” Common rookie blogger mistakes range from a lack of search engine optimization to an inability to properly price and invoice their own content.
Jackson-Henderson dropped the Lipstick Giraffe moniker in late 2017, rebranding her blog as The Kachet Life. “As I’ve grown as a person and a businesswoman, so have my interests,” she says. “Travel and food are dominating on my site right now, as opposed to fashion.”
An avid blogger for the last eight years, Jackson-Henderson hopes to expand The Blog Bloc to at least 10 states within the next eight years. “This model can definitely be adapted anywhere,” she says. “I’m shocked at how much we’ve grown, but the possibilities are literally endless.”
Check out The Blog Bloc at theblogbloc.com.
Daniel Barnes can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.