Magellan has a social chat with Giulia Mulè, the talented food and travel writer and photographer who is the founder of the exquisite site Mondomulia. Giulia’s vital statistics are:
Twitter: 7,400/ Facebook: 2,000 / Instagram: 58,800/ Pinterest: 998,000 / 20,000 monthly page views
How did Mondomulia get started? Why did you do it?
I started my blog six years ago at a time when I felt that my advertising job was not giving me enough challenges, especially at a creative level. More people were starting to become aware of blogs and so I thought I could create a platform to share my photos of food, restaurants, London and travel. That’s how Mondomulia started. The restaurant and street food scenes in London were going through a revolution and I loved going out every day to discover new places to eat.
I spent the first three years writing my blog in my spare time, but after 6-9 months, I began to take it more seriously. Invest more time and money to improve my skills in photography, writing, web management, SEO, was the next step that eventually allowed me to quit my career in advertising and become a full-time blogger in 2014. It’s safe to say that starting my blog was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made!
How does food and travel come together for you?
Back in 2011-12, my blog was almost entirely about food: my favourite recipes and restaurants. As my blog grew, travel content naturally became a part of it, as I always travelled a lot and I wanted to share that side of my life with my readers. Culinary travel has really taken off in the last few years: more and more people travel to discover local cuisines and they want to taste exotic dishes, learn about different ingredients, visit food markets, join cooking classes or meet local producers. With my blog, I hope to inspire people to learn about local cuisines wherever they travel to.
Food, wine and coffee are more often than not the reason why I travel to a certain destination. I get inspired by travel bloggers and Instagram and plan my itinerary around the restaurants and cafes I want to try.
What does luxury mean to you?
Luxury is not about expensive things, but about travelling comfortably. Flying business class, getting a taxi from the airport, staying in 5-star hotels, order room service or book spa treatments are what I consider luxury travel.
If I’m travelling somewhere for two weeks or more, then I will stay at a luxury hotel for a couple of nights to treat myself. But for the most part, I choose homestays, bed & breakfasts and Airbnb to get a better sense of the place, its culture and its people.
Certain destinations like London, Dubai or North America are often over-priced when it comes to five star hotels, but in other destinations like South East Asia you can get top quality facilities and service at affordable prices.
How has Mondomulia evolved?
The blogging world has changed a lot in the last 6 years, so naturally I have tried to keep up to date with my blog Mondomulia. I have changed the blog design a few times and moved onto self-hosting (using wordpress.org as interface) to get a more professional, unique and clean look. I have tried to learn as much as I can about search engine optimisations, Google keywords, affiliate links, link building, Pinterest SEO and many other things that are essential to run a successful blog.
There is a lot more competition now than six years ago, of course, and that’s good as long as it drives quality. My photography has definitely improved thanks to continuous practice, but also because I have invested in course and better equipment. My travel posts often incorporate videos now, which I think really adds value to my story, even though it means an extra couple of days of shooting and editing work.
How do you balance your time between managing the site verse travelling?
Time management is my biggest struggle because I’m constantly on the move, travelling around UK and Europe a few times a month. Most of my income comes from London-based commissions, so when I am back in London I am fully booked with projects and I don’t have much time left to write my blog. I often write or edit photo on planes or in hotel rooms at night. I’d love to be able to outsource some of the work to other people, such as SEO, website management, email admin and accounts, so that I could focus entirely on what I do best: writing, cooking, styling and photography.
Which social media stream do you think will have the most impact in the future – live streaming, Snapchat, etc.?
I think Instagram Stories are going to keep growing as a content sharing tool and even surpass the main Instagram feed in terms of views and reach. I loved Snapchat: it really felt like a platform to share my thoughts and my daily life without filters, which was liberating. But after the launch of Instagram Stories, it made more sense for me to grow that channel instead, as brands often demand Stories as part of an influencer campaign, so I got off Snapchat completely.
Instagram Stories are going to be increasingly more curated and less instant or spontaneous as they were at the beginning.
How have you grown the Mondomulia community? What are you five tips for anyone starting out?
The first tip is: be active on social media. You don’t have to be on every platform that’s out there though: choose the ones you like the most and you feel like you can update regularly. I have always liked Twitter to be part of the London foodie community and stay updated on restaurant news. Instagram is where I find people who create photographic content that I love. I’m very active on both of these channels and thanks to them I have met many of the friends I have in London today.
Other tips are:
- choose your niche and develop your own unique style;
- study your craft by doing e-courses or attending blogging conferences;
- don’t be afraid to reach out to fellow bloggers you like to ask for advise;
- blogging is a slow game: after 6-12 months of regular blogging quality posts, create a media kit and start pitching collaboration ideas to brands.
Where do you see yourself in five years’ time?
I have never been good at making long-term plans, as I like to follow opportunities as they present themselves. Job-wise, I want to keep blogging as I love my job of content creator for Mondomulia, but I also want to start focusing more on writing projects and write a cookbook about my mixed culinary heritage. Five years from now, I would love to be a self-employed writer, have kids and live somewhere in Europe or Asia.
How do you relax?
Exercise is a great way to take my mind off from work, so I try to go to the gym regularly. Even when I travel, I always find the time to go for a 5k run every other day. Baking and cooking are also very relaxing and gratifying activities. And I love going to a Spa. One of the upsides of reviewing 5-star hotels around the world is getting complimentary treatments every now and then. I love a good steam or sauna followed by a strong deep-tissue massage. My next holiday will be in India and I’m definitely planning to get a few spa treatments there.
Magellan Comment: We’ve worked with Giulia on several occasions now and have found her to be extremely efficient, creative and honest about what she can do for a particular client. She is a great writer and photographer and particularly lovely to deal with – if you want to work with Mondomulia click here!
Photographs courtesy of Giulia and Mondomulia
Mondomulia is on twitter: @mulia/ on Facebook: Mondomulia/ Instagram: @mondomulia you can also find Mondomulia on Pinterest
Magellan PR is on twitter: @MagellanPR / on Facebook: MagellanPR / on Pinterest: Sue Lowry / on Google+: Sue Lowry & MagellanPR and on Flickr: Sue Lowry. For more information on our company, visit www.magellan-pr.com. Follow our other blog focussing on travel in the South of England – A3 Traveller. Follow A3Traveller on Twitter: @A3Traveller.