Aimee Song has been in the business for a long time. So long in this instant sensation and Snap second obsessed world that you’d think she’d be tired talking to people. Jaded is the word I am looking for and it would have been understandable given her strong Instagram following, her deals with international brands, and simply out of the fatigue that comes with living a life online.
Except she really wasn’t.
In our exclusive interview with her before she is officially unveiled as the new ambassador of SM Makati, she was telling us about her love for dried mangoes. She jumped right into talking about her experience going around Manila and Cebu for the campaign. Like a kid in a candy store, she was chatty about how she and her boyfriend bought a juicer at the home section of SM. Well-traveled, Aimee talked about her second visit in the Philippines as if it was her first time.
She was even a little taken aback at how she was treated. “I feel like a queen here,” she says about the reception given to her by her hosts and of the people she meets.
I wanted to ask why she was so surprised. “I never thought I would be here talking to you guys,” Aimee tells us about how far she’s gone.
But we were talking to her and here’s what we found out.
If you we’re not a fashion blogger, what would you be?
An interior designer.
Share one bizarre talent you have
I could eat more than anybody. If there was a food competition, I think I could win but I won’t do it. Not hotdog, if it were vegetarian or seafood. I can eat really fast and I could eat a lot. I could also eat obsessively. I could eat eight bags of mango straight in a few minutes before [my boyfriend] takes it away.
How long was the longest time you had to get ready?
The longest time is whenever have a shoot. They do my makeup and hair, and it would be around one hour to one hour and a half.
If a building was burning, who would you save: Coco Chanel or Yves Saint Laurent?
I would save myself. Or a kid in the building. They are already dead. (Laughs)
Aside from your phone and your wallet, what items do you have with you no matter what?
Chapstick or lipstick. Right now I have a lip pencil from Laura Mercier. [I like the shade] Hazelnut Tea.
What song is currently stuck in your head?
TLC’s “Waterfalls.” Yesterday, we were talking about waterfalls and then we just started singing it. We were in Cebu and there was [a beautiful waterfall] they wanted me to see.
You’re now releasing a book, what made you think of working on one? What can we expect?
People are curious about how I got to where I am so I wanted to share the secrets and steps that I took.
[I wanted to do a book because] I felt that I was more known worldwide because on Instagram. People found out about my blog years ago but people who are not into fashion might have not known about me. But because of Instagram the everyday person got to know me and found out who I was. And I wanted to share how I was able to create a business and how I was able to create a following through social media. If you’re a business owner or an influencer or a politician or a singer, whatever, of if you have a small brand because I took to those people specifically to on how to cultivate a following and how to strategize.
It’s coming out this September but it’s available for pre-order on Amazon.
What do you think is a true measure of an influencer?
I think the definition of who is successful and what is successful is different for everybody. One might think it’s just numbers. Or the other person might think, it’s having great content. Another is going think it’s about the power of selling.
My definition is more than how many followers I have. It’s more about the influence I have on somebody, the impact. Whether one is inspired to wear a necktie scarf because they saw me wear it. Or if she is a mom with kids and she never had the confidence to wear an off-shoulder dress but maybe she saw me and now she’s inspired to wear it. Or maybe [it’s to help the] charity cause for stray animals. One of my missions is to have people adopt animals in America. [It’s all about] whether I am making a difference or maybe whether I am impacting somebody’s life.
It’s not how popular you are, how many millions of followers you have or how many likes I get on a photo. It’s about about the influence I have on somebody.
I was bullied in middle school and high school and I shared the story on Snapchat. And I got a really great overwhelming response from people. They werent publicly writing about it but they were emailing, sending me direct messaging and tweeting me. To me that’s so special for them to share their story with me. I felt that it was special and I gave them hope that it gets better.
What are business skills one should have to succeed as a blogger?
In business, I notice I am far ahead than most people because I was genuine. In the very beginning, a lot of people do a lot of ass-kissing and flirting and I never did that ever. I was always true to myself and I am nice to every person. I think it’s because I like people—whether you are a cleaning lady, a waitress, a photographer, or a fashion designer. I am interested in what people do. I ask them questions more than just talk about myself. I am genuinely interested in someone as a human and what they do.
When I go to parties or to events, I don’t just come up to them and ask “What do you do for a living?” It really doesn’t matter whether you are the president of the United States. Or you’re just a random person walking down the street. To me they are just human and their character matters to me most more than their profession or what they can do.
But when it comes to boyfriends, obviously, it’s different. (Laughs)
How do you deal with competition and comparison among bloggers?
There are a lot of bloggers, right? But I feel you shouldn’t compete with everybody since everybody is so different and also one of the lessons I learned is don’t try to be like somebody. Like if someone wanted to copy me, my every move, you won’t be able to do it well because there’s only one Aimee Song. And I am the number one at being Aimee Song so if you want to be like to be me, you’re going to be number two or three. But if you try to be yourself, you’ll be the best at that. There is something special about everybody. I think it’s because I didn’t try to be somebody else, it’s how I got to where I am.
Sometimes it’s hard to be original, I mean, we all shop in the same places. But you learn, you will have your own voice. Maybe in the beginning you’ll have a huge following or you won’t get noticed but you don’t have to please everybody. You don’t have to please everyone. I always say, you don’t have to be everyone’s everything, just be somebody’s everything.
How do deal with the shade thrown to bloggers?
I just read it and brush it off. For one negative comment, there’s a thousand good ones. For one hater, there are thousands of positive and nice people. If someone is going to say something bad to you, unless it’s constructive criticism. If somebody is tearing you down then the issue is on them and their issue is bigger.
What’s personal condition you don’t compromise when dealing with brands?
I think it has to work with my brand. It has to make sense. I don’t wear fur so when a mink coat or fur coat company approached me, I had to say no. They approached another blogger and she said yes but that’s on her because she does wear fur in LA.
How do you turn down an offer?
I get a lot of offers so to be honest I have an agent and a manager who handles that. So if there are ten offers, maybe we’ll consider one. Maybe. For the most part we don’t negotiate, we turn it down.
What is one piece of advice you would you give for a heartbreak?
One advice is that I think you have to understand that things might not go your way. It’s okay to have a meltdown. You need to have a grieving period and a meltdown but then there’s a point where you should be “Yo, this is done. You need to get over it.” A grieving period is important so it doesn’t affect you and your relationships in the future.
One thing you can eat every day
Avocados. I eat avocados every day. Every day, I eat avocados for breakfast. I put pink Himalayan salt and I squeeze a lemon over it. If I am working out, I eat it with salmon and onions.
When I am in the office, there is the best avocado toast because of me and my sister. The food truck in front of our office made it because of the both of us.
Longest time you got stuck in an airport?
The longest time was five hours because of my mom recently. I took my mom to an all girls trip to Mexico. She lost passport and got a new passport. [She eventually] found the old passport. So being a mom, she was trying to be careful, so she brought both passports. She used the old one to leave the country and so when she gave the new one when we went back, it didn’t make sense and she was held in customs for five hours.