Ooh, did I get your attention with my controversial title? Good, bahaha. I’ll obviously point out that in today’s post I’m actually talking about why some bloggers need to get over themselves – the vast majority of bloggers we know are all super lovely swell people, but there is a certain attitude amongst some bloggers that’s been irking us for a while now.
As we work in digital marketing, we get to see both sides of the blogger outreach system, both as bloggers being approached and the brand approaching bloggers. And from both of these perspectives we now and then see the same things: namely, bloggers who need to get over themselves. Whether it’s making cringey requests under #PRRequest hashtag, or bitching that they haven’t been invited to certain events, I’m sure we’ve all seen this type of bad blogger behaviour.
Here are a few of my personal bugbears when it comes to bloggers:
Badmouthing a Company’s Outreach – Especially When It’s Legit
We know there are plenty of companies or individuals who are not great at outreaching to bloggers, but seeing people take to social media and blast a brand is a bit boring to read at the best of times. But what really grates on me is seeing a blogger slag off an outreach campaign simply because it doesn’t match their personal standards.
One shining example of this happened quite a few months back on Twitter. We saw one blogger furiously tweeting about a brand, and then saw her write a whole blog post about the way that this company was trying to scam bloggers. So what did this company have the audacity to do? They put a tweet out for blogger collaborations, which then turned out to be asking for bloggers to guest post for them on their own blog. Said blogger was properly furious about this, stating it was just brands getting something for free by using and abusing bloggers. I have several issues with this bloggers’ beef:
1. guest posting has been used as a way to help blogs for years, as appearing on someone else’s blog and getting a link back to your blog can help with your SEO (as we spoke about in more detail here)
2. social exposure and association with a fashion brand is surely something that, as a fashion blogger, should surely be something fairly interesting to you
3. this blogger had clearly been more than happy to work with the brand when they thought there was a freebie from it, yet not when they realised otherwise
For the record, we ended up writing a guest post for said brand. They still tweet out our article regularly, as well as promoting our other posts across their social channels, and we got a lot of traffic from it. We would rather that than a cheap freebie, ta.
Assuming There’s a Budget and They Deserve to Be Paid
Sponsored posts are fairly commonplace in the blogging industry, however there are many bloggers who are a bit too obsessed with the idea of getting dollar dollar bill. There are a lot of blogging groups out there where you’ll see bloggers slating companies who have offered guest posts or try to outreach with a ‘blog to win’ competition. Common complaints include
“We should not be expected to work for free, we’re valuable to brands and they should stop abusing us”
“There is a marketing budget for advertising so they should pay us”
“I bet the people working at the brands aren’t working for free”
First up, yes bloggers are growing increasingly important to brands, which is why so many of them are thinking of ways to work with us. However, it’s important to stay humble and also realistic. Just because you have 200 followers does not mean brands should be fawning all over you as if the fate of their company rests in your typing hands. Secondly, a blog for most people is rarely advertised as their work. Of course there are full time bloggers but what happened to all this “I blog because I love it” shit that most bloggers will always say when asked? So now writing about fashion, which you claim is your passion, is a chore? Convenient.
Next up, there is not always a budget for blogger campaigns, and this is not a snub. Often digital marketing budgets are small and paid marketing is another kettle of fish entirely to what blogger outreach falls under. Similarly, sometimes there will be no budget as brands have a policy of not paying for links (which should actually be the case, cough cough). Contrary to popular belief, marketeers do not spend their time laughing at how they’ve scammed you while rolling around in money that was originally in a bag labelled ‘Blogger Incentives’.
And finally… no of course they’re not working for free. Check out ‘blog’ and ‘job’ in the dictionary; quite different definitions. You berks.
Taking It All Too Seriously
I know we all put a lot of effort into our blogs, but the fact is that most of us set out to start a blog because it’s fun and is meant to be something we enjoy. To see people slagging off brands, making demands and slating outreach people (who are just essentially trying to do their job) just makes it look like they’ve forgotten why they started, or that they were always in it for the wrong reasons anywho.
Also, as a side note, being that outspoken and bitchy isn’t going to endear you to many PR people. Juuuuust sayin’.
What do you all think about this topic? Let me know in the comments below!