Oh boy, I’m probably going to get a lot of hate for this…
You know, i was chatting to a couple brand owners the other day and the topic that came up frequently was “social media influencers and bloggers”. A new brand will pop up on Instagram and it’s like moths to a flame! First “bloggers” start showing a little interest. Then the company gets the dreaded influx of messages “Do you want to send us products for some exposure?”. Companies are overwhelmed with messages like these and it honestly gets under their skin. I have been blogging a year and a half and not once have i gotten myself to be THAT forward and send a little abrupt message like that. Maybe i am shy or just not confident yet but it’s a big no-no to me. Is that weird?
So now these business owners are in a rock and a hard place. Say no to the mass of people asking for freebies and risk getting shunned or give everyone free stuff and go bankrupt before even launching? I sat there reading a message from this business owner, where she feels she wants to give up before she even starts, because no one offered to purchase something but rather wants it for free. My heart bled for her! It’s not right.
I’ve heard from business owners ( that were asking for advice) that bloggers beg for freebies to review on their blogs and events to attend. Personally, if I were a business looking to connect with bloggers I would be discouraged to work with someone who bombarded me with “Send me free stuff” messages. Greed is not pretty. Greed also doesn’t get you anywhere in life. Get to the back of the queue and wait patiently. Good things come to those who wait. Let the company come to you! Are you blogging for the right reasons? Are you in it for the free stuff? Go think about that for a second.
I started off purchasing so many items last year. I bought everything we wanted and needed and only after a few months, companies started asking if they can send goodies for pictures. It made me so happy that they WANT me to promote for them. I was finally reaching my goals! From there, i STILL continued to buy products. Ask any company we rep for, i probably have purchased from them more than what they have actually sent. We actually believe in their products and enjoy having it in our home.
It’s probably human to love free stuff. It’s natural to get excited about receiving goodies, but there’s also the balance between what is appropriate and what is considered to be fishing for free product, and just plain greedy. Blogging has become so valuable to companies but it has to be done right.
So, for companies to give out a free product, there has to be a return on investment expected in one form or another. Do you have quality followers? Are your pictures something they able to use? Do you know how to market the product? It’s not just taking pictures of your kid and posting it with a couple of hashtags. Those pictures need to be good enough for people to WANT that product you are showcasing.
If you are a small blog and you trying to improve, download your stats and have them handy and make a good proposition to the company you want to review. A simple “Do you want to send me free goodies?” message won’t cut it. They need to know what they will get out of the deal, how it will benefit them, how you post your reviews and your average reach per post.
Blogging is a skill. There’s so many people that just want to start “Cause hey, look how much free stuff that person gets!” Does not work that way. AT all. You need to know HOW to blog and HOW to promote. It also takes some time to improve that skill.
I have always said this over and over and over throughout my journey : Support local, don’t exploit them. Especially new businesses. And even if they cannot give you free things, support them anyway. What if the shoe was on the other foot? What would you have done? Blog for love, not for stuff. #OverAndOut
Some images courtesy of PINTEREST