Amy Roiland is a blogger and also the CEO Founder of a new fashion/beauty social networking app called FashionTap. Amy grew up on a farm in a small town in Northern California called Manteca. She started to obsess over fashion at the age of 13 and has been blogging for almost 3 years now and just recently launched FashionTap. It is her biggest dream to finally connect up the entire fashion industry on one social platform. Amy has the desire to help everyone be found by what they do and where they live in the fashion world. She also wants to help everyone be paid what they deserve to be paid.
Name: Amy Roiland
Location: Los Angeles
Current title | Company: CEO founder FashionTap
Education: BA in Fashion Merchandising and Marketing from CSUN
Website / social media pages: @afashionnerd on every platform www.afashionnerd.com www.fashiontap.com/getapp @fashiontapapp
Where was the first place you ever worked and how did you land it?
I worked at a place called the River Mill helping people with their weddings. I was 17 years old when I landed this job through a friend who also landed the job with me. I love weddings so it was a really fun job but it was also very stressful.
Right now you are into Fashion PR, what led you to do this?
I have a degree in marketing and have always loved the world of marketing and especially fashion marketing PR. I feel like what I am doing with A Fashion Nerd really revolves around the PR world in a sense. I got hired to run an entire PR marketing department for an e commerce site/ denim design house because of the followers I had on my instgram for A fashion Nerd. The boss didn’t even care about my degree they were just impressed with my following 8000 at this time.
Awesome, that’s impressive! Can you tell us a little bit about the FashionTap app and what it does?
FashionTap is a new Fashion/Beauty social networking app that allows users to make a profile, connect your Instagram and post your images and directly tag your exact items to your images, all tags are built in affiliate tags so the users make commission on each sale. FashionTap is also an entire database for the fashion world to be found on by what they do in fashion and where they are located.
We have stylists, bloggers, brands, designers, makeup, hair, photographers, PR firms, boutiques, retailers, model, and fashion enthusiasts. It is my dream to finally connect everyone in the fashion industry on one social platform helping everyone be found and helping everyone finally be able to monetize their content. Everyone is a walking talking advertisement without the benefits. I am solving some MAJOR issues with this app.
How to use FashionTap
Why did you decide to start FashionTap? What inspired you?
While working in PR for the ecommerce denim place, I realized a HUGE void in the fashion industry when it came to technology and social networks. There was absolutely no way to find people by what they do in fashion and where they live. How do you find bloggers in different areas to work with as a brand? How do you locate retailers or boutiques in Miami FL? You can’t and it’s a huge issue right now. My boss asked me to locate bloggers in Austin TX for SXSW to send them our denim and I couldn’t. There was no database out there helping me locate these girls or guys. I also hated when I would go onto Instagram and find a pair of shoes I loved and I would ask who makes them and the user wouldn’t reply or if they did they would say the brand name and then I would have to search and search for that item. FashionTap is solving some big issues.
Instagram is not a fashion social network, its an everyone network and no one is being paid what they deserve to be paid. FashionTap is a fashion based social network where users get paid commission on each sale they drive from their images. As I mentioned before, you can easily connect your Instagram and post from your IG and tag your exact products to your images. You make a commission when someone buys and the person who buys is happy because they didn’t have to go and search for that exact item and the retailer or brand is happy because they just drove sale. FashionTap is also an entire database where users can now be found by what they do in fashion and where they live.
What challenges have you faced since starting this business?
It’s very hard to grow a social network , it takes a lot of time, a lot of persistence and patience. I do think we are growing very fast and getting some really amazing content on the app. Our users are loyal and are very talented. It’s exciting to see these brands and retailers driving sales and its even more exciting to see the bloggers and models getting work on the app with some of my brands and retailers.
The makeup category is for sure my favorite category on the app, they can tag every single item directly to their image. There is no way for these girls to monetize their IG content at all and I am allowing them to do so. The tech industry is ran by men so it is hard being a women in this industry and trying to grow a company from the ground up. I am working my butt off and trying to stand out in the crowd. I went to a recent tech event and I showed a man The FashionTap app and he said you created this? I said yes and he laughed really loud. It’s rare to find women in the tech space and especially women who have created an app from scratch and an app that solves a lot of hard pressing issues in the fashion world.
What’s a typical day like for you on the job?
I wake up at 8am, sometimes 7am. I make myself a green tea matcha by Encha, MY FAVORITE EVER, and then I start to market my app around 9 am till 10pm at night. My COO (Chief Operating Officer) comes over around 9-10 am and he takes calls , sends emails and also helps with marketing. We have a ton of side projects launching soon which will help us raise funds for the app and help us become known.
What do you love and dislike most about your job?
All I do is work on my app and on my blog. I love working on FashionTap because this app will really help connect everyone on one social platform and finally give everyone a voice. I am so excited about FashionTap app and my blog as I am getting to do what I am passionate about. The biggest thing I dislike is getting blocked by fashion girls when I am sitting here trying to help them get paid for their promotional work and help connect them with potential brands. A lot of females think of me as some sort of threat, I am far from a threat. I go out of my way to help everyone with anything they need help with so this breaks my heart but I have to stay positive and keep on going.
If you could go back and make any changes, what would they be?
I wouldn’t date guys until I was around 19 years old or maybe even after college. I would focus more on learning and becoming a better person. I feel like a lot of my youth was me chasing boys around. Take time for yourself and make yourself healthy and smarter.
I love your honesty there! What would you tell your 20-year-old self?
START blogging now and don’t stop. I had like 3 other blogs and kept quitting them and starting again. If I stayed on one blog and didn’t quit I would be SO much bigger than I am now. Also take care of your skin, moisturize, wash it every single day, 3 times a day, eat healthy and drink tons of tea. I would also tell my 20 year old self to STOP drinking coffee, it dries your skin, exhausts you and is not healthy for you or your skin!
What is the future for you and Fashion Tap?
I want to really connect everyone in fashion on one social platform like an IMDB but for the fashion world. The future looks amazing and I think the more and more people that hear about this app the better it will be. We have an actual FASHION based social network now, other social networks are not for fashion only, they are general social networks.
Technology & Fashion is clearly the new power couple, what do you think the future is for them?
Everyone will eventually only shop online and on their phones, it’s way easier for everyone. Going to the mall and shopping can be fun with friends but most of us do not have time and most online stores offer free shipping plus returns. I really believe the future is mobile e-commerce and it seems to be growing and growing. The future is FashionTap.
What advice would you give to people wanting to start a business in fashion technology?
Focus, pick an issue, solve it, and be persistent. Also be patient things take a lot of time to grow and they don’t come easy.
What’s the most important advise you have received that you would like to share with other female entrepreneurs?
One female entrepreneur once told me to act more like a hard ass chick and don’t take any crap from these men in the tech world. The tech world is filled with men to be honest so it is very difficult at times to be taken seriously. I also hear its kind of like dating when raising funds so you have to play hard ball and act uninterested a lot of the times. I would just say stay focused and look out for the other women in this space and help one another. I have noticed women in tech help other women in tech always.
One thing that makes you | your business ” Younique”
FashionTap is solving an issue in the fashion space. I created this app from my experiences working in fashion and my struggles with Instagram and how you can’t shop off of images. On FashionTap you can search San Francisco and pull up bloggers, brands, designers, retailers, boutiques, hair, makeup, photographers, models, PR, stylists, or even fashion enthusiasts like yourself! I am not some person who knows nothing about the fashion world creating a fashion app trying to make money off the users. I take 0 cuts from my users money and will never ever take any cuts from their money. This says A LOT in my opinion.
We hope this interview inspires more ladies in Technology & Fashion!