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I want to discuss a less talked about thing in the blogging world. I like to refer to it as the “dark side” of blogging. So you remember from this post where I outlined about how to start and grow a blog, I mentioned having a blogging mentor and my self appointed one if she knows it or not is Helene. Well she wrote this post about how to respond to how I like to refer to them “cold call” emails from random companies luring you in with their “write about our XYZ company” and they might just pick YOUR post to share “across our social media outlets where we have thousands of followers so tons of potential exposure for you!!!” Well you know what. That is kinda crap. They use you to get free publicity out for their company and 99% of the time that is it. They don’t share your post and you are left standing there with no compensation and a total waste of your time.
The Dark Side of Blogging – Don’t Sell Yourself Short
I will say the only silver lining is if you are trying to grow your blog and get sponsored posts you can use that one as an example for the next person who contacts you but here is the difference. Demand your worth. This article I use as blog inspiration for the impact that we make for potential companies. Granted she has been around for a long time but look at her reach.
Not that I am saying I am the sole cause but when I put up products that I am passionate about, they tend to sell out. You have that potential as well. You are driving people to someones product that they may not have stumbled on without you, which is why almost every marketing company is now forming their own network of influencers to become more of an influencer agency; it’s lucrative business for everyone involved. When I started blogging, I had no clue what an affiliate link was or how to make a cent off what I was doing. I blogged because I loved showing my family and friends things that I was excited about or ultimately in the end could save them time and money.
[bctt tweet=”How to make money with blogging and your influence.”]
Let’s circle back to this post again. If you start blogging to make millions it’s not going to happen. If I were ever to sit down and put in the amount of time I spent vs what I actually ever made it would probably be like 50 cents an hour but you know what??? I absolutely love it. At the end of the day though when I’m up to 1 in the morning finishing posts…..yes it’s because I love it and sharing my values, ideas and finds but if I can make some fun “play money” as I like to call it…..then why wouldn’t I?
This brings me to my next point. I think as bloggers sometimes people can be so quick to jump on the “ohhhhh a sponsored post“…..cue the big eye roll. I on the other hand applaud bloggers when I stumble on those. Hence, where this dark side of blogging is stemming from. Why you may ask??? I know that they are getting paid for their worth. When they get paid, they can use that money for a fabulous purse they have been eyeing or to spruce up their blog design…..whatever! At the end of the day you are getting paid for your influence. Plus I don’t know anyone out there that doesn’t like getting something for free. Be honest. Even if it’s like a lotion or something….”look babe/family member/friend my blog is paying off I’m getting products sent to me for free“…..there is a little piece of you that loves validating having your laptop glued to you when you finally get something for free.
You work hard, you take the time……so get something from it. There is no shame in that.
I also know there are so many that just blog to blog. An online journal or a place to get their thoughts out into the world and that is 100% fine as well. I am not knocking either one. I am just trying to let you know as women we need to support each other and let you know that you can stand up and demand your worth. Don’t spend your hard earned time writing for a company at the “potential of being shared with their followers“. Even if you get $25 for it! You can smile knowing that your Starbucks for the week was paid because of your blog and voice.
My last point I also want to make about building and supporting each other up. Pinterest is one of my highest traffic sources and it’s because of all of y’all pinning my recipes, fashion posts etc. I think we should make a pledge to start pinning each other’s posts more often. Like I pledge to pin 10 pictures a day or something. I pinned Pamela’s amazing outfit the other day and it’s already been pined multiple times already. How do you make images “pinnable” if you will…..check Katie’s tutorial it’s fabulous and pinned on my pinterest already. You can follow me here on pinterest.
Without further ado and with Helene’s influence from this post here is my response back to those cold call emails. I keep it sitting in my drafts folder and just pop their name into it.
Hello (fill in the blank of the contact/company)
Thank you so much for reaching out and for your kind words (because they always try to say how your blog was so special that’s why they reached out). Working with your company would be a great collaboration but I do require compensation for posts. I have (x amount of) followers with (x amount of) page views a month. All of my posts will be promoted on my various social media outlets and I strive to create a post that is organic to my readers.
I also make sure my posts have visuals that can be pinned to my thousands of pinterest followers.
I appreciate you reaching out and would like to work with you. My starting price for blog posts are $x minimum. We can discuss other options also if you would like.
You know what? 90% of the time I get the email back “thanks Amanda for responding but at this time we do not have the funds to support this“……figured. However for every 10 I shoot that email back to I get one or two that will pay. Now it’s up to you to decide if that company fits your vision or voice. If it does great, name your price. If if doesn’t, then pass.
Also with that said make sure you layout your expectations and I usually ask for half before I write it because once again I am not wasting my hard earned time.
So that is my honest opinion. I hope nobody takes offense to it. You know I have always been about lifting each other up as women and influencers. I hope we can take some of that stigma away from sponsored posts and promote each other with pinning and sharing peoples fabulous ideas. Do you get a lot of “cold call” blog emails? Have you ever asked to be paid or just written something with the hopes of being shared? Spill let me know your thoughts! xoxoxoxo