Working with brands can be a pretty daunting thing, especially if you’re a newbie blogger. I was taken advantage of by a number of brands when I first started out, because when you’re new on the blogging scene the thought of working with brands is too exciting to ever imagine asking for more from them. I am by no means an expert at working with brands but there are a few things I’ve picked up over the months.
1. DONT BE AFRAID TO ASK QUESTIONS.
This one is quite important – I always felt like if I asked questions, brands would be less inclined to work with me. Stupid, right? I would just do everything they said and never ask if I could do things my way or slightly differently. Remember, it’s YOUR blog and YOUR content – if you don’t understand or don’t agree, ask.
2. STAND UP FOR YOURSELF.
I feel like this is so important when you begin to work a bit more with brands. It took me a while to get some guts and actually stand up for myself and my blog because I didn’t want the brands to back out. I will always be 100% truthful in any review I post, which one brand didn’t like. There was a slightly more negative paragraph which they asked me to remove, but I refused because I always want to disclose my entire feelings. It’s important for me that my readers can rely on my honest opinion.
3. CONSIDER YOUR WORTH.
It seems that nowadays brands don’t want to offer anything more than exposure alongside a brand collaboration. It’s really important to consider whether the exposure and free product to review (sometimes) is worth your time and effort – most times it’s not. The first brand I worked with offered me exposure and a discount code to purchase their products with, and when I look back on that I think to myself, why the hell did I accept?! They promoted my posts (yes, there were more than 1) once maybe and claimed once they knew they could trust me to give good reviews, then they’d send the products out for free. Even though I was just starting out as a blogger, I was definitely worth more than the nothing they provided me with. Which brings me onto my next point…
4. ASK FOR PAYMENT.
It has only taken me until very recently to start asking for payment when brands approach me. It’s really really difficult to actually work up the guts to ask but when it eventually pays off, it’ll be worth it. I am yet to be successful but when you begin to realise how much your time and effort is worth, asking wont seem so scary. It’s not just writing – it’s testing, writing, photographing and promoting, and that is worth more than ‘exposure’. I found it hard to know how much to ask for, I didn’t want to come across as cheeky but I also don’t want to undersell myself. Ellefluence have a little calculator for you to work out how much to ask for based on your stats, which definitely comes in handy!
5. IF YOU GET A BAD FEELING, SAY NO.
Don’t just say yes for the novelty of actually getting to collaborate with brands, more often than not, it’s not worth it. If there’s spelling mistakes in the email, they don’t address me by name or the email is very impersonal/black and white, I’m more inclined to say no. Trust your gut and don’t be afraid to say no – not working with brands is better than having a bad experience with them. Just ask anyone, I’m sure they’d agree.
These are probably all points you’ve considered and you know about, but if this post helps just one person, that’s good enough for me! Go get those brand deals, gurl/boy.