I am starting a new series called The Truth Behind Fashion Bloggers and today I talk of insane Pr & Brand requests. Surely, you have experienced similar issues.
The Truth Behind Fashion Bloggers
insane Pr & Brand Requests
Canon 5D Mark III
Today I want to start a new series on blogging called ‘The truth Behind Fashion Bloggers’ because I am sick and tired of being mistreated. Now my main focus are fashion and photography but the most requests I receive from pr & brands are from the fashion niche. Of course all I will be showing you could happen in the beauty, lifestyle or niche – just I have less experience in those.
Having said that, I am really pissed. No one talks about this. Every blogger knows how much work there is in running an Instagram account, a Facebook page and a blog. Even more, if the blogger is doing it in her/his free time because there is also a full-time job. So when I see insane pr & brands requests as the ones that follow, I do get angry. A lot.
I get pissed simply because there are some pr & brand that don’t respect the work of bloggers. And this habit is spreading.
Here below I will start by noting down in how many ways pr & brands can be disrespectful to bloggers of any niche. I will be talking of collaborations, sponsored content and review writing.
First of all collaboration means you give me something, I give you something in return. Once a few years ago I remember how brands were used to give you a specific amount (usually <45$) to spend on their site. After you placed the order, you had to write a blog post on the pieces chosen. You give me something (some items), I give you something in return (visibility and professional photos).
Now let’s take Instagram and the huge amount of small brands who want ambassadors. It’s insane how they write so much but in the end, you have to pay them and you also have to make a review, create a dedicated post, share their IG handles, all for free. Now where is the blogger’s profit? It’s gone.
Usually everything starts from a comment on your latest IG image saying something like: “DM us if you want ti be a brand rep!“, I like to DM them to see what they propose and they are all the same. I end it up refusing to be ambassador of whatever.
Only a few years ago, I collaborated with big brands such as Chi Chi London, CassArt (click to see the related post) where they offer me a dress or some items in return for visibility and an honest review. And my blog had less views and less followers but the cooperation was fair. Today is no longer this way for many brands.
2.Sponsored Content & Adv Banner
This part is very funny! I laugh because of how some pr & brands consider and misvalue the blogging world. This is what normally happens: usually on your mail box pops up a request of collaborating with a brand for a sponsored post. You say ok to see what is next and you receive the craziest requests. See the three examples below.
I have added brands names and mails on purpose so that you can recognise and avoid them. Lisa from the first request asks to write two posts (with 3 links and 5 images) and to add a banner on my sidebar for a few months, all for $15. I replied that this was unacceptable, $15 dollars barely covers the two-months time and they answered me back with “how about 1 post + 1 banner for $15?”. Now I really think they can’t read and they make fun of the blogosphere.
On your mail box you usually receive the craziest requests for sponsored posts – is the blogging world really so misvalued?
I don’t know how I can explain them how much time and dedication a blog post requires. Images must be taken, meaning time to make-up and styling. Then there is the post-production time, the SEO research for keywords for he post, the actual writing the post time and finally the sharing through social media time. In total is definitely more than $5 (I have divided the price by three, two posts and one banner). How can they actually believe bloggers would accept their insane request?
But I am wrong. Another brand said that my request of $30 for a blog post was too expensive (see mail above) and showed how many bloggers accepted to be paid $5-$10 for the same blog post. I was shocked.This is blogger exploitation. It is highly disrespectful of the passion and work behind a post.
Please please stop accepting this crappy requests. You value so much more, you have to stand for it. And they say it’s a win-win strategy for both of you, IT IS NOT. Ot we can build a long term relationship, YOU CANNOT WITH THESE TERMS. Please be smarter than them.
On writing reviews I can talk forever. Firstly, if someone asks you to write a 5-stars review for money, how honest can it be? On the other hand, why not if you have actually experienced the product and you are free to give an honest review. But it never works this way.
I firstly entered the world of online stores reviews with StyleWe. I have blogged twice about their dresses and I seriously loved them. When I got asked to write reviews on a few sites about the clothes tried on and to be paid for them (around $10 each), I said: “okay no problem”. Result: one, I never got paid and two, I wasted a lot of time. Honestly, I wasn’t expecting this treatment with StyleWe because in the past they have always been really professional. Same happened with Zaful. Beware of these brands cooperations.
Now it got worse. See for yourself with this email below.
Firstly I have never worked with OrderPlus, so how could I give an honest review and second, are you really offering $2 for review? I am seriously worried.
How can I accept? Or better how can I reply kindly? Usually in my replies I do say how unacceptable is the request and how their are exploiting fashion bloggers but it is no use for them. They don’t care about me. There are dozens of other small bloggers ready to accept. Now this mentality should end. Bloggers should be recognised for their work and it should first start from us. So please please stand for it and treat yourself as bloggers with the value you deserve.
Have you have had some similar experience? What have you done? I used to accept some of these requests but with time and understanding the value of my work I started putting limits.