29-year-old YouTube sensation Zoella, real name Zoe Sugg, created her blog in 2009 and has since become one of the most influential people on the Internet.
As an 'original' on the YouTube scene, Zoella was one of the first influencers to kickstart the phenomenon and make a really successful career from blogging and vlogging. Since then, she has gone on to release ‘Zoella Lifestyle’, limited edition Christmas gifting ranges, and has worked with some of the world's biggest beauty brands. Sounds impressive right? But her success doesn’t end there.
How It All Began
Zoella began her blog in the bedroom of her family home in Wiltshire and now, a decade later, she is running her very own empire in Brighton and is a total girl boss.
Zoe first began blogging and filming videos whilst doing an internship in interior design. She documented her daily life, wrote about makeup and fashion, as well as collaborating with other influencers such as Louise Pentland and Marcus Butler. Fans loved her original content which included shopping and Lush bath bomb hauls, makeup tutorials, monthly favourites and her very festive vlogmas series'.
Zoe has gone on to establish a huge following for herself and her many brands. Her own range of cosmetics, ‘Zoella Beauty’, broke sales records and saw all but one item selling out overnight.
With over 16 million subscribers on her YouTube channels, 12.6 million followers on Twitter and an Instagram feed viewed by over 9 million, she is the pinnacle of influencer selling power.
Becoming a Best-Selling Author
In 2014, the beauty blogger and best selling author broke records and became the fastest-selling debut novelist since records began with the first of the fictional trilogy, ‘Girl Online’.
With an Instagram feed that makes everyone green with envy, showing off photos of summer garden parties and rainy day dens, she launched her first non-fiction book, ’Cordially Invited’ - a how to guide on hosting guests for all seasons and occasions.
Band Aid, Madame Tussauds and The Great British Bake Off
In December 2014, Zoe took part in the charity single 'Do They Know It's Christmas' as part of Band Aid 30 alongside several other famous faces, including Ed Sheeran, One Direction and Ellie Goulding.
As her popularity continued to rise, Zoe started to appear more frequently in the public eye. So much so that fans rejoiced when Zoe and her vlogger boyfriend Alfie Deyes unveiled their very own wax figures at Madame Tussauds in London in 2015.
The wax figures feature a mock up of 'Zalfie's' the spare bedroom at their old Brighton-based flat - a setting long-term viewers will recognise. Sat on the bed as if ready to film a video, the wax figures wear clothes donated by Zoe and Alfie with Zoe's waxwork sporting her signature striped top and a peter pan collar.
Firmly confirming her new found fame, Zoe also took part in the 2015 Comic Relief edition of The Great British Bake Off, competing against the likes of Jonathan Ross, Gok Wan and Abbey Clancy.
Launching Sugg Life
Zoe joined forces with her brother and fellow influencer Joe Sugg, also known as ThatcherJoe, to co-create a line of branded merchandise, cleverly named ‘Sugg Life’. The collection sold out within 25 minutes thanks to the sibling’s joint following and digital promotion on their social channels.
Becoming a Mental Health Ambassador
The beauty guru is well-known for her down to earth and honest personality, often showing fans the reality of living with anxiety and helping to beat the stigma surrounding mental health. She has recently been announced as a Digital Ambassador for mental health charity, Mind and for her 28th birthday, Zoe asked her followers to donate to Mind, raising a whopping £13,848.
Collaborations and Entrepreneurship
Zoe has worked extremely hard over the ten years that she has been blogging, filming videos and building her empire. This has led Zoe to work on some very exciting projects and collaborations with a number of huge brands.
Most recently, Zoe collaborated with Amercian beauty brand ColourPop Cosmetics to create her very own ‘brunch’ inspired makeup range. Combing Zoe's love of neutral shades with a pop of colour, the collection consists of an eyeshadow pallette, matte liquid lipsticks and gel liners.
As well as the hugely successful Zoella X ColourPop collab, Zoe has worked alongside the creators of photo editing app, A Colour Story to create and co-find a brand new video editing app, Filmm. Allowing users to make edits to their video using the mobile phone, Filmm has a variety of filters and effects as well as clip-trimming and a wide range of adjustment tools.
Thanks to her YouTube channels, beauty blog, beauty and lifestyle product ranges, books and overall social media success, Zoella is worth an estimated $2.5 - 4 million. Combined with her bubbly and relatable personality, this puts Zoe and her multiple businesses and brands, a cut above the rest.
The Future of Zoe Sugg
Does Zoe remain to be a leading social media influencer?
Having spent nine years building such an almighty empire, Zoe kickstarted the whole influencer phenomenon and paved the way for many other content creators and social media influencers. She helped demonstrate that it is a career and a very profitable one at that.
In 2018, Zoe Sugg and Alfie Deyes founded ’A-Z Creatives’ - a Brighton-based brand agency. They now have their own in-house creative team helping them with photography, videography and social media management.
Earlier this year, Zoe also announced that she would be discontinuing her current beauty and lifestyle ranges in order to focus on more exciting projects.
More recently, after meeting with Jo's Cervical Cancer Trust, Zoe became a pioneer for encouraging women to book their smear tests. With statistics showing that 1 in 4 women skip their cervical screenings, Zoe very bravely filmed her own cervical screening to prove how simple, easy and painless it really is. Zoe also filmed a Q&A with the nurse to answer those all-important questions to help women understand what really goes on. Talk about girl power!
Zoe has gone from being a bedroom blogger to becoming one of the most recognised faces on the Internet and she is showing no signs of slowing down.
As we enjoy watching the world’s most successful influencer go from strength to strength in her career, we hope everyone will join us in supporting Zoella in her endeavours and relax in style whilst sampling her latest offerings.
Influencer Matchmaker has a vast range of social media influencers available for brands to collaborate with. For more information on how you can work with us, contact our Influencer team on 0203 9580 427 or email [email protected].