Business owner, podcast host, dog mom and vegan (almost)—Bailey Stanworth does it all.
She shares her perspective on entrepreneurship (know your why!), mental health and body positivity, and getting out of creative slumps. Without further adieu, and in the wise words of Bailey herself, let’s “just start.”
For our Smash + Tess fam that doesn’t know you, tell us a little about yourself, your business, Play Digital, and your Podcast, “What Day Is It?”
EEEEK Hi Smash + Tess fam! No matter how many times I get asked this question, I feel awkward answering it, but here’s the answer in a nutshell. I’m Bailey, a Vancouver-born-and-raised weirdo at heart. I’m a huge animal lover, and while I hate labels, I’m 99% vegan. My job title is kind of messy because it’s a bunch of stuff from entrepreneur to influencer to podcaster to constantly confused human. My day-to-day consists of snuggling my blind-in-one-eye Boston Terrier, Banks, working with brands of all sizes via my creative media agency PLAY Digital (we help brands with social media management, content creation, influencer marketing, graphic design, gif design, etc.), to recording podcasts for What Day Is It? (we’ve had guests like Jillian Harris, Kaitlyn Bristowe, The Birds Papaya, Lauryn Bosstick, etc.), and awkwardly finding vacant alleys or parkades to shoot content in with my tripod.
You are a content creator and Founder of an influencer marketing agency, so you experience both sides of the brand/creator relationship. What advice would you give to brands reaching out to influencers and vice versa?
Ooo I love this question. I work with a lot of smaller, female-founded brands who don’t usually work with a giant marketing budget and focus on in-kind gifting, which I know doesn’t make sense for all creators. And we respect that the work influencers put into creating content is so valuable. But one of my biggest tips for brands who want to work with influencers but don’t have the bills to spend would be to do exactly what I just did—recognize the work of a creator. Acknowledge that you know what goes into creating content, and while you may not be able to pay them monetarily for their efforts, ask them what could be mutually beneficial rather than just sliding into their DM’s asking them for 2 posts, 3 stories, 1 reel and 4 high res images in exchange for a $50 dress. “Mutually beneficial” are two of my favourite words. On the flip side, if you’re a creator looking to work with a brand, know what you bring to the table! Do you have high conversion rates? Are your images high res? Do you have a story you can tell? What’s going to help your audience connect with that brand?
I also think one of the best things you can do is start creating the content ahead of time. If you want to work with Summer Fridays, start talking about skin care regularly. If you want to work with Bondi Boost Hair Care, start putting up hair tutorials. If you want to work with Smash + Tess, start showing how you style rompers! Make your value undeniable and unique and then show it to the brands vs. telling them about it.
For our readers out there looking to start their own brands, what are three things they should know before taking the leap?
1) Entrepreneurship is not as glamorous or social as it looks online. It can actually be really isolating, especially if your friends and family are 9-5er’s. It requires a lot of sacrifice and commitment to stepping outside of your comfort zone.
2) Know your why. This is what will get you through the tough moments that every entrepreneur goes through, whether it’s online judgement, a manufacturer messing up your order, stressing about getting your to-do list done, etc. Having your why gives you something to come back to, that reminder of why everything is worth it. My why is connection. Connecting with others to support them and paying forward the connection to build community!
3) Get an accountant. Unless you’re really good with bookkeeping and taxes. I am not.
4) I’m throwing in a bonus one...just start. We wait for the perfect time because it’s an easy excuse to stay in our comfort zone. But starting doesn’t have to be a big action—it can be baby steps, like securing your IG handle, research, buying a domain—but it creates momentum that adds up to create those big actions!
On your page, you openly speak about mental health and body confidence, which is so inspiring! Why do you think it’s important for influencers and brands to use their platforms to join these conversations?
It took me a long time to get to a place where I felt compelled to talk about both mental health and body confidence from my personal experiences. So, to anyone who is experiencing these things and not ready to talk about it, THAT IS OK! Be gentle with yourself. The reason I started, and why I think the conversations are so important, is because I wish I had been having them sooner. I wish that I had seen someone else willing to be vulnerable so that I could feel less alone. And that’s why I continue to push myself to show up, because when you’re going through those hard, often crippling moments the last thing you want to do is share it on a public platform. But I know that if I am feeling anxious, stressed, lonely, insecure, sad, or whatever, that someone else out there is, too. And if me sharing can help even just one person feel less alone, then that is so worth getting uncomfortable to me.
Video content and specifically TikTok is a rapidly growing trend in the social media world. What tips do you have for creating engaging videos that are suited for these emerging platforms?
Video is still so new to me like it is to a lot of people so just because I have a creative agency or am a creator, I don’t have it all figured out. And that’s something I want to normalize—that sometimes the people you think have it all figured out truly don’t. They’re just showing up and trying, which I think is so key in evolving as both brands and influencers. Some tips/tools I’ve learned so far are to make sure there is a takeaway from your content. Ask yourself what someone will learn or find valuable in your video? Is it a new product? Is it a productivity hack? Is it that they’ll laugh? Will they feel inspired? In terms of creating video content, it can be a real, for lack of a better word, b$#*@. It’s so time consuming, so my tip would be to start getting in the habit of filming videos. We’re so used to taking photos, but start taking videos of your coffee, when you’re putting on an outfit, when you’re trying a new restaurant. Save your IG stories and repurpose your content. If you have a podcast, repurpose the audio. Utilize what you have so you’re working smarter, not harder. Also use your notes. I think of content ideas in the most inconvenient times so I always keep an ongoing list in my notes of ideas so I can refer back!
It can be hard to stay inspired and motivated to create new content all the time! What do you do to get out of a creative slump?
I let myself have the slump! This is something I’ve recognized the value in more lately. I used to push myself or put pressure on myself to feel creative and get out of the slump, but now I’ve realized that mindset is only reinforcing that I’m not feeling creative. It focuses on the negative by putting pressure on trying to move into the positive. So, now I just accept where I’m at and let that process evolve naturally. It usually starts by me recognizing that I’ve been trying to edit the same photo for two hours, or that I’m over-thinking what my grid will look like with a photo in a certain spot. When I do notice this, I put my phone down and remind myself those things have nothing to do with my WHY (anyone seeing a pattern here?). I think when we can truly accept where we are, we become more empowered—and that goes for so many things in life!
Shout out your FAVE follows ATM!
We could be here all day if I did that but I always love shouting out micro influencers because a) I would not be here or have the platform I do without all of the incredible creators who constantly shared my page, and b) I know how hard it is to show up and believe in yourself in that phase of the journey when your audience is dominantly people you know. So I’m going to leave some micros here that I hope everyone can check out and find value in!