Striped Turtleneck Sweater + Pleather Skirt // The Right Way To Ask Someone To Meet For Coffee
I cannot even count how many messages I get from strangers or newbie bloggers asking me to meet them for coffee so they can learn more about running a successful blog. It’s a great idea to get advice from someone who’s been in the industry for a lot longer than you, but cold messaging someone to meet you is usually the wrong approach. Read on to learn the right way to ask.
These types of messages stress me out tremendously because I absolutely love helping other bloggers get started. I write so many articles offering advice on how to work with brands, how to grow your accounts, how to get paid. I also do my best to respond to DMs and emails with all sorts of questions and I take my time giving thoughtful answers. I am more than happy to help and if you want to pick my brain, please feel free to do so, but ideally in a way that doesn’t require me to lose almost an entire day of work.
When you are asking me to meet you for coffee so you can learn more about the blogging industry, what you are actually asking me to do is stop working, spend an hour getting ready, spend an hour on the train, spend an hour answering your questions, and then spend an hour going home. Besides the fact that I just lost most of a day, I also just spent $10+ on train rides and coffee so you could learn all the tips and tricks of blogging that I spent the last 5 years figuring out. I also owe at least 15 blogger friends of mine coffee dates, so if I’m going to be trekking to the city for coffee, it will be for one of them. I wish I had more time in the day to meet with every person who reaches out, but I’m a full-time blogger with a husband and an attempted social life, so it’s just not possible.
When I had a day job, it was definitely easier to meet up with people. I would already be dressed and downtown, so all it would take was a five minute walk to the nearest coffee shop. Now that I work from home, in my pajamas no less, everything changed. It doesn’t upset me when people reach out and ask me to coffee. In fact, connecting with like-minded people has been one of the highlights of my blogging career. But if you’re reaching out, not as a friend or peer, but as someone looking for advice or direction, there is a right way to ask someone to meet you for coffee, and rule number one is to never ask them to meet you.
Rule #1: Never ask someone to meet you.
If you are asking someone to take time out of their busy schedule to give you advice, recognize that by offering to meet wherever is best for them.
Rule #2: Propose a time, but be flexible.
My mentor taught me to always suggest a time to make it easier on the other person, but be flexible to their schedule. It’s a lot easier to simply agree to a coffee date on Tuesday at 2pm, for example, than be asked to give someone a date and time that works, especially when coffee with a stranger is not a priority. Also, proposing an actual time will force the person to check their planner and lock in a date.
Rule #3: Offer to treat.
Since the meeting will only be to your benefit, it’s the least you can do.
Rule #4: Explain why you want to meet with this person specifically.
The majority of messages I receive to meet up are very generic. “Love your blog! Let’s meet up. I’d love to get advice on how to start mine.” It makes me wonder if this person is genuinely a fan or just mass-messaging people. However, when I receive a note from someone saying why they love my blog, when they started following, and how they’re interested to learn more about a specific part of my journey, now I’m intrigued.
Rule #5: Say thank you.
I’m always taken aback when someone emails me questions and I spend sometimes 30 minutes responding only to never hear from them again. Understand that someone is making time for you and show appreciation by sending a follow-up thank you email.
Black and White Striped Turtleneck: Zara
Black Zippered Pleather Skirt: ASOS (c/o)
Black Tights: Hue
Black Booties: Ivanka Trump (c/o)