One of the most exciting parts of blogging for me is working with brands. I’ve been fortunate enough to have already worked with some great brands on both a gifted and a paid basis and to be in this position, after starting my blog only back in September 2017, is quite frankly amazing. I love building connections within the industry and having big brands recognise my work has made me pretty proud of the content I’m creating and how far I’ve come in a relatively short period of time.
But, it’s not all as glamorous as it may seem and it is hard work. People have this misconception that blogging is just a bit of fun and I mean, how can you complain when you’re getting free items right?! But you often have a timeline and brief to work to, pressure to produce the best quality work you can and often juggling other commitments…just like any other job. However, as the blogging industry is still relatively new lots of brands work on a gifted basis only. For smaller bloggers, who may not have the same reach and engagement as larger bloggers with more of a following, this can be a great way to gain exposure and be affiliated with large companies. Therefore, a lot of the time I’m happy to do gifted collabs because they can still be really beneficial for me.
However, it’s a fine balance as you have to weigh up the positives that the brand collaboration could bring you vs the work you’re putting in. I think when I started out I was so excited and almost grateful that brands wanted to work with me that I didn’t question the amount of work I’d have to put into the collaborations vs what I was getting in return. There are definitely some products I’ve received which I could’ve lived without and some collabs where I’ve felt I’ve got nothing to little in return for my hard work. Also as I’ve just started a new full -time job I’m struggling to find as much time for blogging, which sucks, but it means that with the time I do have I want to focus on fewer brand collaborations but ensure I am creating the best content I can for them.
Therefore, going forward I’m going to start being more selective with the collaborations that I accept, as it’s okay to say no to brand collaborations, even if you’re a smaller blogger. I’ve outlined below the criteria that I would consider for whether or not I would accept a brand collaboration. For any other bloggers reading this I would love to hear your thoughts on the below! How do you decide whether or not to take up an offer for a collaboration with a brand?
Criteria I consider when being offered a brand collaboration
What are the requirements?
How much work/posts are they asking for? How long would it take me to shoot/edit/write up the content?
Do I like the product?
Is this something I would buy myself or would love if it was bought for me? Is it something I would use/wear normally?
Who is the collaboration with?
Does the brand have a large social following? Do they often repost bloggers photos? Could this be a good opportunity for exposure? Is this a good PR contact to have?
Is it paid or gifted?
If its gifted, what is the value of the product? If it’s paid, is this a fair amount of money for the workload? If it’s gifted, is there potentially the opportunity for paid work in the future?
It’s important as bloggers that we know our worth, but then also still respect that brands need a return on investment so the collaboration needs to be mutually beneficial to us both.
Until next time,
(*Disclaimer- All items marked with an (*) were gifted to me, however I was not required to feature them in this post)
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