Friday, April 27, 2018

Friday Focus :: How I work / want to work with brands + 5 tips for working with bloggers

Although I love this shirt from,
the reality is that most bloggers do need a job. 
For some blogging is part of a household income. 
I have been toying with this idea of talking about sponsorships 
for MONTHS now if not a couple years.

they discuss "curated transparency" when working with brands in authentic partnerships. 
This is a great conversation, worth a listen, 
check it out HERE:

 When I started this blog 7+ years ago,
 I will admit that I was so excited about the possibility of sponsorships and working with brand, 
the idea still gets me excited. 
I love the prospect of trying a new product, hearing collaboration ideas 
and actually making some money from this blog that I create content for on a daily basis.  

This post is about to be brutally honest about some companies and their "blogger outreach",
I am including 5 tips for working with bloggers at the end, 
to prevent these kind of insulting "offers for sponsorship"

Little did I know that most sponsorship emails go like this "offer" from Yoins
$13-$18 for a blog post to endorse products that I have never even seen in real life, 
God only knows if they actually exist.
I love that after going back and forth, they email me from a different account 
with an even lower offer...

Or this shady "sponsorship idea" presented by Casper,
in which I blogged the 5 Big Girl Purchases in my 20s in June 2017
and they casually wanted me to throw in a link for their pillows... 
with absolutely nothing in it for me or my work:

Or how about this slide into the DMs from Yesohyas on Instagram
sure let me endorse a beauty box so that three people who follow my blog 
pour their hard earned money into a product that I have never actually used or seen in real life:

Perhaps one of the most insulting "sponsorship" opportunities occurred 
when I made a trip up to the new Center Stage Optique in NYC to meet with the owners 
and view their eyewear selection. 
I used my own money for transportation and took a day trip.

I intended for this meeting to be the start of a growing partnership, 
much like my 2+ year continually growing relationship with Ruth from 10/10 Optics 
since our first meeting in the summer of 2016.

I had a nice time meeting Greg and Karen and exploring their eyewear collections,
and after nearly 2+ hours I left with my camera full of pics and notes of different brands 
and eager to share their business.

On the way home my mom asked me
 "How was this meeting beneficial to you? What do you get out of this? 
What will editing those pictures and writing this post do for you?"
 All great questions. 

Karen reached out to me asking when the post was going to go up.
I responded with some of my concerns and desires to make this partnership mutually beneficial
with some ideas about sponsorships.

& no response. 

months pass, 
no response, no response ever came. 

 Perhaps the perfect transition into my 5 tips for working with bloggers.

1. Be genuine in your request. Do your homework. What kind of companies does that blogger currently work with? How do they like to approach sponsorships? Understand and respect that there are FTC Guidelines that require disclosure of sponsored content.

2. VALUE their time, money, and effort. Some bloggers blog full time, some use it as supplemental income, some just as a hobby. No matter what the situation, blogging takes effort, time and money for website hosting, computer programming, etc.

3. Be honest with what you wish to provide in exchange for a blog post, social media shout out or other endorsement. Approach these opportunities so they are MUTUALLY beneficial. Especially if you say you are going to provide something, I sincerely hope there is followthrough on both ends. Nothing is worse than empty promises.

4. Answer emails, concerns, and keep communication open! Sponsorship/collaboration relationships work best when they grow over time. Readers can tell when someone is not actually into a product they are endorsing. There is nothing I dislike more than people being fake.

5. Influence can go both ways, know that a blogger can have a negative interaction with a company or a brand and can still choose to share those opinions. I choose to mainly only share positive reviews on my blog but that doesn't mean that if something was terrible that I wouldn't say so, but usually those sponsorships don't make it past my inbox. I aim to be honest and as you can tell from this candid post, that is not always a favorable outlook on brands who do not value my effort or commitment to my blog.

What are your thoughts?
If you write a blog / have a social media presence what are your views on sponsorships/collaborations?

I mean it could go a totally different direction
as discussed in Hidden Brain Episode 55: Snooki and the Handbag.
They talk about Snooki being sent a Gucci handbag, not by Gucci but a competitor.
An interesting role reversal to attach a brand to "an influencer"
I mean Mike "The Situation" was paid by Abercrombie & Fitch NOT to wear their clothes...

different approach at sponsorship...

 Shameless Promotions 
{I mean... Fashion School @FIT NYC doesn't pay for itself!} 

Check out my vintage finds: InTheLeopardCloset on Etsy!
Shop my closet, including modern items, on PoshMark!
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FTC Disclosure: 
This post contains affiliate links and I may be compensated 
if you click on my links or make a purchase using my links.
Some products may be gifted to me for promotion, 
they will always be noted with "c/o" 

Thanks for your continued support! <3

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