Why I'm Selling Out. Let's Talk Sponsored Content
There seems to be a fairly common consensus in the blogging world that sponsored content = selling out. I know of plenty a blogger who refuse to watch #AD videos and won't like an #ad photo. And to be honest, it's horrible.
So I want to talk sponsored content and why I do it.
I personally do not have an issue with sponsored content. I think it's absolutely incredible that so many of us have been able to monetise our blogs to the equivalent of a salary. In a way it's a huge compliment as brands love our work so much that they want to pay us for it!
The "sell out view" seems to stem from several misconceptions: that brands provide a script, and that the blogger has no creative input. But that's rarely the case. Sure, I receive multiple emails offering guest posts but the vast majority of sponsored content is where a brand provides a brief and the blogger is required to shoot photos & write copy. I've never had a prescriptive brief to the point where creative input is completely removed - often brands want a certain aesthetic e.g.. spring or summer, but rarely do they say much more. So is a post like this any different to a normal one? Aside from mentioning a product, the same process is behind it. I've done three sponsored campaigns over the past few months and each one has taken a significant amount of time and no less effort that usual.
So can we please get rid of the out-dated view that #AD's make a blogger a sellout? Bloggers gotta pay their bills - I've got rent to pay and if I can do that through my blog, then why not?
How does Sponsored Content normally work?
Quite simply I just receive an email with a brief, asking if I want to be involved. I ask for a budget and either negotiate or accept depending on company & price. Brands often provide a deadline and it's up to me! It's illegal to pay for links so brands never ask for those so it's simply a matter of mentioning the product.
How does payment work?
The brand normally mentions whether they want social media coverage so often payment encompasses an instagram post, tweet & blog post. I tend to ask for a budget first but if I have to provide a price, I'd never accept less than £100 (especially if I have to take my own photos). This is based upon time, skills and frequency of sponsored content. If I've had several sponsored posts in a month, I may be more flexible but this is my go to price.
As a student who doesn't work during the academic year, sponsored blog posts are a great way to generate income which makes things so much financially easier! (I tend to put aside my domain cost, square space fees first before spending).
I think the dislike of sponsored posts stems from the view that a blogger has lost integrity and quite honestly, if you saw some of the things I've been offered (like advertising a pet shop), you'd start to wonder. If I was in it for the money, you'd notice a different style & content from my usual beauty & lifestyle. It's really up to the blogger to make the call and of course I've accepted the odd thing to pay my rent. If you're unsure about a post, trust your gut as if it makes you feel iffy, it's not the best idea. (I also avoid all gambling & bingo posts as often brands will refuse to work with you if you've posted about them).
So there you have it. The reasons why I have no issue with sponsored content & the reality of how sponsored content is created.
Are you a blogger? Do you have an issue with sponsored content?