The Things You Need To Know When It Comes To Your First Sponsored Post
PART TWO IN THE SPONSORED POSTS SERIES
See here for part one – securing sponsored post opportunities.
Getting paid to write about something you love is the dream as a blogger. Sponsored posts were something I was pretty wary of in the beginning, and I knew hardly a thing about them. As time went on, I heard more about them from pro bloggers. And after a few months, I was approached by some brands myself. If you want to learn more about them, and make sure that you keep yourself safe and your blog on the right track, then I wrote this post for you.
There are a lot of varying opinions on sponsored posts out there. Personally I think the occasional one is absolutely fine, but I wouldn’t do them very often. I’ve written one or two since I’ve been running All In My Head. I prefer to talk about the products I use and how to use them, and include my affiliate links instead. I’m giving my experience and the reasons why I love a product, and recommending it because of those things.
I’m not against sponsored posts, don’t get me wrong! Since altering my focus for AIMH, it’s become less viable to do them, but I think beauty, fashion, food and parent bloggers are much more likely to benefit from them, and be able to secure them easier. The amounts of brands and products are just higher in those kinds of niches! Now that I focus on the business and entrepreneurial sides to blogging + social media, those kinds of opportunities seem to come around less often.
These are some of the most important things you should know when it comes to sponsored posts, and everything surrounding this method of monetizing your blog. I’ve learnt these from personal experience and personal research, and what I’ve heard from being part of the blogging community!
1. Be Careful
Let’s start with the doom and gloom and get it out of the way. You must be careful when it comes to emails you are sent regarding collaboration. Investigate as much as you can before you do anything. If you haven’t heard of the company, find out more about them.
Read the email properly, and make sure you have all the facts before you agree to anything. Giving a random person on the internet your address isn’t the smartest decision! Take your time and make sure you’re happy before proceeding.
There are lots of different scams out there, and you definitely don’t want to become a victim of one of them! Make sure you know 100% what you’re dealing with before going ahead with anything.
2. Make Sure You’re Being Properly Compensated
When it comes to blogging for business, a lot of people think that the exposure is good enough for providing a brand with a blog post. But can you pay your bills with exposure? I don’t think so…
Yes, a free product is also great, but it shouldn’t be the only thing you require to write a post for a brand. Do you think your landlord will accept lipstick in lieu of money? Probably not!
Your time, effort, expertise and audience is definitely worth being paid properly for! [Keep reading for a tip on how much to charge].
Not only that, but working for free makes it a lot harder on other bloggers. It’s a service and you wouldn’t give away other work for free. Would you go to a day job and not expect them to pay you? And if they didn’t have to pay you, do you think they would want to pay anyone else? It’s exactly the same thing!
Make sure you’re given the money you deserve for your work.
3. Ensure You Get Paid Enough For Your Sponsored Post
I think this is something that a lot of bloggers struggle with. It’s difficult to put a price on that kind of work. It depends on what level your blog is at – how much traffic you receive and the amount of followers you have.
Use these things to work out a rough figure. Personally I wouldn’t accept anything less than £50 for a sponsored post, although other bloggers may feel differently.
You’re putting a lot of time and effort into creating something unique and interesting for your readers. You’re helping promote a brand to your audience, which is really important within their marketing campaigns. And not only that, but you’re offering them a slice of your corner of the internet, and the scope of all your readers.
If you’re getting less than 5k visitors a month, I would say £50 is about right. As you grow, you can add to this figure, but I definitely think you need to set a suitable boundary for your work.
Some brands will offer you a figure straight away, and it’s up to you as to whether you take it or not. If you don’t hear anything about payment during those first few emails, then ask what the budget is. You have every right to ask to be paid for your work.
4. Make Sure You’re 100% Clear On The Terms
When you discuss sponsored posts with brands/companies, make sure you know exactly what it is that’s expected of you. Do you need to write a post over a certain amount of words? Are there specific links you need to include? Do you need to promote it on social media in a certain way?
Make sure you know all of the information before you agree to anything and that you are willing to do it. It’s no good agreeing to do a video for a brand and it turns out you don’t have any experience and no clue where to begin!
Only agree to do things you’re completely happy with – it’s your biz and it’s your decision.
5. Ask Yourself If The Brand/Product Suits Your Blog
Blog about makeup? Then a post about a slow cooker will definitely look wrong within the mix. Even if you love that slow cooker!
If it doesn’t fit in with your blog’s niche, and it makes no sense for it to be there, then it probably shouldn’t. Your readers will be confused, it will stand out like a sore thumb, and it won’t seem genuine.
If you’re clear on your blog’s purpose, this will be so much easier. I’ve had this issue with AIMH; it started as a beauty and lifestyle blog and has turned into something completely different! I’ve found my own real passion and purpose, and focus more on blogging, social media, and entrepreneurship now.
I’m proud of where AIMH has come from, and the changes that it’s gone through! It’s been a slow process but it what the right decision. It’s not something I took lightly however, and has taken months! You can still see all of my old beauty and home posts, because I wrote about them and I’m still proud of them, although I most likely won’t be writing too many more posts focused in that way.
Once you know what you want to write about, stick with it, and focus only on opportunities that align with your brand and your overall purpose.
And finally a little bonus one for you because you know me, I love to give you guys little extras 😛
6. Make Money – But Not At The Cost Of Your Readers
Your readers are the most important thing when it comes to your blog, and it’s super important to focus on serving those readers. They should be your absolute priority, especially if you want to blog for business.
Don’t talk about products that aren’t going to benefit them only because you’re going to get paid for doing it. It’s not going to impress them, and you might find yourself losing readers.
Only talk about things that you genuinely love, believe in, or are passionate about. It shows. It shows in your content, and people are hugely put off by dishonest or self-centred posts. Also, it can take them away from your blog, never to return! Don’t let that happen.
I hope you’ve found some useful info from this blog and feel a bit more at ease about how to handle this element of blogging!
If you have any tips you’d like to share on sponsored posts from your own experience, then please let me know in the comments 🙂
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