I’m starting a series of sponsored posts soon (like, tomorrow soon) and I wanted to clarify how that works before you felt that you had to make your own assumptions.
You see, this is my blog. It belongs to me, it’s maintained by me (with some help in the technical department) and every post on here (currently 600+) has been written by me over the course of three years.
Every so often I get approached by brands to promote specific concepts or campaigns. Sometimes I do it, sometimes I don’t (that’s the beauty of having your own space). I did decide a while ago that I’ll no longer be running what is basically free ad campaigns.
Why won’t I throw in a quick post on behalf of a brand or their PR company? You see, I whip up these posts with my skills, in my free time. I post them on my blog that reaches and audience that I work hard to retain. I use my expensive macbook to write them on, with the help of my expensive camera and my expensive internet. And let’s remember my time. The price of my free time has skyrocketed because it’s a precious commodity (having a full time job, a freelance job, a blog, a partner, family, friends, pets and somewhere inbetween, a life).
That’s why I require payment for these things. Products are not payment. Products are sent for consideration in the hope that they’ll end up on my blog or in the freelance work I do to give said products publicity.
Aside from requiring payment, I’m stubborn as all hell with regards to disclosure. If a brand doesn’t want me to clearly state that the work I’ve done for them is sponsored, I won’t do it, and I also make it clear that I won’t be dishonest in any way. If the sponsored post is about a product, my feelings can’t suddenly change because I’m being paid to write about it.
Whether my fellow bloggers disclose sponsored posts or not is none of my business – we have no regulations in SA about disclosure at this stage. I know some who do and I know some who don’t. I’ve decided that I’ll disclose anything I get paid actual money for.
Should you be skeptical when you read a sponsored post on here? Probably not, but I can’t stop you. But things work this way: I’m getting paid to devote time to a specific subject at a specific time. What I’m not getting paid for is an opinion or an outcome. While ideally it would be great to give positive feedback, I’m very well aware that blog readers are not stupid (I’m a blog reader myself) and my bigger priority is maintaining and building this blog and its readership.
And that’s about it. If you have any questions, fire away. If you read this in a rant-y tone, please reread it in a neutral one – it’s sometimes hard to explain things factually without sounding too serious.
I’m very happy that my first series of sponsored content is with a brand I like, owned by a company that has always treated me well. Still, I’m both terrified and excited.
Keep an eye out for a competition launching tomorrow!