Tips On Balancing School & Influencing With Pamela Valdez

The Klaia Team
May 9, 2023
5 min read

We came across Pamela Valdez (@pamelamvaldez) on TikTok where she gives tips on becoming an influencer we obviously we had to interview her! In only one year she has managed to get partnerships with huge brands such as Tommy Hilfiger and NARS. And she has worked with over 60 brands. Keep on reading for tips on balancing school & influencing, with a side of fashion advice.

What inspired you to start creating content and become an influencer?

I have always had a huge shopping addiction like many of us and was obsessed with putting together any clothes, shoes, or accessories either within my own closet and pinning ideas on Pinterest. When I felt really confident with my style and how I dressed, I knew I wanted to share it on a social platform and have the chance to be creative. I started on Instagram first almost two years ago in June 2020, but then when I saw TikTok was growing and more people were using it, I decided to start posting more consistently on there in March 2021.

I started off with outfit ideas, outfits of the week, and then transitioned to more topics that I was gaining experience and knowledge in, such as blogging, marketing, working with brands, getting internships and personal tips I had been learning. Fast forward to two years later, I’ve gained an amazing audience on both social platforms, have worked with incredible brands, I’ve helped so many people get closer to their dreams and am so excited to see what 2022 will bring!

Take us through your content creation process.

I have learned to develop two different methods when it comes to my content creation process. Instagram has become a lot more casual to me in terms of posting photos. I used to be very specific about my feed, having certain colors and achieving a certain aesthetic with my content. Now, I just like to share outfits I’m wearing, places I’m visiting, and anything going on in my life. If I have certain deadlines for brands and have to create content to fit a certain aesthetic, I always do more research and plan ahead for that by finding locations local to where I live and picking outfits out beforehand. But for my personal content I post that is not related to brands, I definitely keep it a lot more casual. Shooting Instagram content for one outfit or detailed shots can take less than 30 minutes for me. Multiple outfits being shot would also be less than an hour!

When it comes to my content on TikTok, I use a spreadsheet on my phone and laptop, as well as a journal/planner that I purchased to give me a more visual perspective of work I have to do, or video ideas. Within my spreadsheet on my laptop, I like to lay out different series that I want to do such as my current one that I launched for 2022 which is all about how to be a content creator from scratch and resources to use and sign up for. I also write down any ideas in the spreadsheet that I get while scrolling through the FYP or hear a sound that I think would be great potential for a video for me! Filming multiple TikToks can take about an hour to film if I have the right information and everything laid out for the video, but editing takes the longest because I like to write out texts and captions.

You are also a student at the Fashion Institute of Technology, just like one of our founders. How do you manage your content creation while attending FIT?

The biggest thing for me is time management! With so much going on in my life, it is so important to balance everything correctly and use every hour of the day. I have my days off and times where I definitely do feel uninspired or take a step back from social media. But, when I have brand deadlines coming up I always use a planner to have a more physical and hands on view of what my month looks like so I can use a pen to cross off days or meetings I have to attend.

Before I found awesome online social media management tools like Klaia, I used to use a spreadsheet, strictly to keep track of the amount of brands I have worked with, campaigns I do every month whether they’re gifted or paid, if I completed them or not, if a brand shipped out an item to me and I haven’t or have received it, and more! But now that tools for creators and influencers have become a lot more virtual, such as Klaia, it has helped me so much with balancing school, content creation, a part time job, personal days in my life and friends or family time. I can simply just edit and add anything into Klaia while I’m on the go and it is so convenient because you can carry less on you and easily adjust anything for your week.

We’ve seen that in 2021 you worked with over 60 brands. Do you have any advice for micro-influencers about landing brand partnerships?

YES! When I get a comment or a DM for any piece of advice and my best tip for a micro-influencer, the one thing that I ALWAYS say is to start using TikTok!!! When people say TikTok can change lives, trust me it can.

When I was first starting out with content creation back in 2020 straight out of high school and was about to be a freshman in college, I was spending hours a day emailing brands, messaging them on Instagram, finding PR people on LinkedIn and researching on the websites of brands I like to shop from to find anybody I could reach out. I’d do this consistently to get at least one yes for a collaboration from a brand, after getting dozens of rejections.

As soon as I started using TikTok, everything changed. I started getting emails almost every other day from companies that said I landed on their FYP and that we’d be a great fit for a collaboration. If I would’ve never started putting myself out there, learning to get comfortable in front of the camera and providing value to an audience, I would not have even half of the accomplishments I’ve achieved today. I truly owe a lot to TikTok because every week I get surprised with who emails me or wants to work together next.

Related: 10 Influencer Platforms to Find Paid Partnerships in 2022

Is there any advice you’d give to other content creators that are also students?

I always advise that you put your education first if you are trying to balance school and content creation! Get that degree and always get your work done first before content, because school is definitely important! Make weekly tasks and to-do lists before the week starts so you can see what you have to do.Then, split everything down into certain days so you aren’t stressed trying to get everything done in one day!

How have you been able to use Klaia as a content creator?

Klaia has helped me manage my paid and gifted collaborations as well as payment from brands whether they’ve been on time or late! Being able to have Klaia on my phone and using it on the go has helped out immensely because sometimes I don’t want to bring my planner everywhere with me and just want to use my laptop. So having access to all my work for the month there is so convenient. For gifted and paid collaborations, I will write out who has reached out to me, who has shipped an item to me, content guidelines I have to follow and also when my payments are scheduled for. Any tool out there to make your life easier when it comes to content creation is something to always be on the lookout for, so Klaia is perfect for that!

Related: Getting Started on Klaia: How to Create a Campaign in Klaia Step by Step

Have you noticed changes in your personal style since going to school in New York City?

For sure! New York City is one the best places when it comes to fashion and finding inspiration because you never know who you’re going to see walking across the street or even in my own class when I’m at school. I’ve definitely upgraded my style from how it was before which was biker shorts, sweatpants, ripped jeans, a t-shirt and sneakers, to now investing in more quality pieces such as knitted sweaters, platform boots, straight leg jeans, loafers, shackets, and more. I used to be a little lazy when it came to my outfits because I didn’t feel the need to always be dressed up when I went out, but now I love taking extra time in the morning to find a cute outfit that makes me feel confident and ready to take on the day.

Do you have any fashion tips for people that have a minimalist style, but feel like their outfits are repetitive?

Layering up with fun accessories and jewelry is a great way to break out of the repetitive outfit cycle. I have started to build up a jewelry collection and bag collection for different outfits. This helps me lean out of wearing the same outfit and I sometimes like to take certain bags and try to plan an outfit around that. Or I take one item from my closet and go on Pinterest, search up that item, and see how people styled it.

An example is a pair of straight leg jeans. If I search that up on Pinterest, I will find dozens of outfits styling it differently, either with a bodysuit, a tank top, a hoodie, knitted sweater, turtleneck, etc. Then adding fun jewelry like a pearl necklace or dainty gold necklace and some chunky hoops is great! It looks like you put more effort into the outfit when it actually was simple to do!

What’s your biggest inspiration for your minimalist style? Could be in fashion or home decor?

Definitely Pinterest, Instagram and TikTok. Pinterest has literally millions of photos that I love to save to different boards whether it’s outfits I want to try to recreate, a moodboard that I want to have for my future self, and future outfit ideas for a vacation or date. Instagram is where I follow all of my favorite fashion content creators and I always save outfits or styles I love and want to create in the future or even a photo I want to try to do in my own way.

TikTok also encourages a lot of my spending because every time I am on the FYP, I find myself opening the Amazon app or looking up an item on my phone that I want to purchase next. I also love shopping on other people’s Amazon Storefront for home decor or organization because they happen to find the coolest pieces I didn’t even know existed, haha.

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