Introducing Ade of Adzvice...
Tell us a bit about yourself and your blog.
I'm a bit of a rarity in that I'm a Black British male in the blogging world. I've been blogging off/on for well over 5 years and I would classify myself as a travel and lifestyle blogger if I had to get technical - (who likes labels anyway?). I am a marketing professional with experience across various marketing specialist areas such as brand management, e-CRM and customer marketing as well as over 3 years in the alcohol industry.
Outside of work, I am an avid traveller and tend to visit 10 cities a year. Attending street food markets is another pastime of mine I enjoy. As a self-professed cocktail enthusiast, I love seeking out the coolest cocktail bars in London and abroad and putting them to the test. I am a hip hop head and a proud J. Cole fanatic (#Coleworld). Useless at football but that hasn’t stopped me from being a lifelong Manchester United fan, which given that I have always lived in South London, makes perfect sense! ;)
In terms of blogging, I am the founder of ADZVICE, the online hub for guidance and recommendations. Through blogs written by myself and other contributors, as well as the ADZVICE podcast, we aim to empower young men and women with tips and recommendations on a wealth of topics. If by the end of reading just one of our blogs or listening to a podcast you haven’t picked up practical tips, you’re probably on the wrong blog.
When did you start blogging and what motivated you to start?
I launched my first ever blog, http://mr-adz.blogspot.co.uk/ back in 2011 with the intention of using personal, real-life experiences to give practical advice and techniques to show why progression in life shouldn’t be considered as optional. I wanted to give advice on topics which I felt young adults need to speak about more, all with a personal development focus. I remember getting tired of the ample amount of trash ‘blogs’ I was exposed to which were trivial and always left me with a big “so what?” after reading. Thus, I set to be a positive alternative to those kind of websites.
How has your blog evolved since starting your blogging journey?
Fast forward to almost exactly 5 years since my first blog I mentioned (several more were launched and abandoned in between) and ADZVICE was born. Originally, it was still very much a personal blog where I would give travel tips, restaurant reviews and lifestyle guidance. I worked on it independently and after a few months of positive feedback, I realised the potential for the ADZVICE brand beyond it’s then format.
I took the blog down in the summer and relaunched on the 1st December, which was also my birthday. Now, I have a partner (@BonitaRS_), who helps curate the site and we both lead a group of contributors who each share advice and guidance on a topic that relates to their personal blog. The aim of this is to open up readers to many bloggers all in one central hub. Whether you need tips on how to manage your money, a cool bar to impress a date or just want some lifestyle guidance, ADZVICE has something for you.
In the process of launching ADZVICE, I also began a podcast which is an extension of the brand. Originally called ‘For Millennial Minds’, the ADZVICE podcast, as it is now known sees myself and a guest sit down over drinks and a meal to discuss a topic they’re passionate about with the aim of sharing tips for the listeners. Previous episodes include ‘Quarter Life Crisis’, ‘Managing Money’ and ‘the Art of Self-Investment’. It’s interesting to see that although my blog has changed quite a bit, giving advice to others has stayed firmly at the centre of my motivations for blogging.
Where do you see yourself and your blog in five years’ time?
I have not done my 5 year plan (yet) but I am confident ADZVICE is going to be significantly bigger. I see it as something that is going to add value to so many people out there and open up all types of opportunities for me and those involved. It may sound cheesy as hell but as long as I am happy, travelling loads, healthy and ADZVICE is a respected and commercially viable brand, I will be in a fantastic place in 5 years time. There are some specific things that I am speaking into existence but are too secret to share in writing at this moment :)
Do you have any bloggers you admire and follow yourself?
I am much more aware of bloggers on Twitter that I follow than the British bloggers with huge followers. I like what @ZeenaXena has done with @BloggingGals and take great tips from @Bola_Sol who runs @refinedcurrency. A personal friend and relatively new blogger is @Disunomics and he uses his humour and economics background to show how ‘everything in life is a transaction’.
From a purely aesthetic point of view more than anything, @AFIANATASHA takes beautiful photos and is someone I follow and now personally know. Finally and although she’s not British @QuirkyBrownLove is an incredible blogger and her blog is a great showcase for alternative Black culture. I’ve actually been featured in a list of 50 male bloggers they put together which was pretty cool.
Do you have any advice for bloggers who want to get into travel and lifestyle blogging?
Everyone is a blogger these days so I would tell a newbie to think carefully about what will set them apart from the many others. Think about your brand, what’s the long-term vision for it and if you were an outsider looking in, would you read your blog? In terms of just general blogging tips, I’d say start simple. Get yourself a nice Wordpress theme, take photos on your phone, provided its of good quality and don’t be afraid to make mistakes, learn and change the direction of your blog. Progression always beats perfection.
What are your hopes for the Black British Blogging community?
I think it's a great time to be a Black British Blogger to be honest. We’ve seen the power of Black Twitter and although it has some negative connotations, it shows the influence Black people can have via social media. My one hope is to see more Black British MALE bloggers. At the moment, I’ve come across a handful, if that (myself included).