So you’ve been approached by a brand/company who have asked to do a ‘paid’ collaboration with you. If so, congratulations 🙂 If you’re here to read some advice and to prepare yourself for future opportunities or just a bit nosey, this post is for you.
I had no idea about sponsored stuff when I was first asked to do paid content. I had no idea what to negotiate, if I even should negotiate, how to format the post or video & even if I should accept or not. It can be a little daunting can’t it?
Here are my tips on producing sponsored content..
Don’t be a sell out
Do it because you believe in the product & even if you don’t enjoy it after trying it, make that known. Nothing is more annoying than reading or watching someone bang on about something that they clearly have no idea about. Brands will often pay £100s-£1000s but that doesn’t mean you need to accept the work. For example, I will never work with Liz Earle because their products cause me really painful breakouts & I would be lying to my viewers/readers which isn’t fair.
Don’t be scared to go back and forth with brands asking them lots of questions. This may be a job to some of you, so you have to know what you’re doing & what you’re being asked. Get the brands expectations and formulate how the content can be incorporated into your blog or channel. Read your contract over and over, even get someone else to read it through too. This is a business at the end of the day and your ass needs to be covered. How long do you have to produce the content? What specific things need to be shared within the content? If there is something you’re not sure of, or you don’t understand – ask. Your creative space is YOURS, nobody else’s.
Don’t over think and make the content different from your usual stuff
When I first started producing sponsored content I often found it difficult not to ramble and look like i didn’t know what I was talking about. I tried to make it more professional looking which made me over think what I was saying and to put it frank, it came across shit. You’ve been approached because the brand already likes what you’re producing so keep it the same. Obviously your brief may ask for specifics but for the bulk of it, just be yourself.
Be honest/declare it
Its the law now to make it very clear when your content is paid for. The full disclaimers and information can be found here. Its a lot more honest straight away to readers and viewers if ‘AD’ or ‘SP’ is displayed 🙂 it then gives them the option whether they want to watch it or not.
I had absolutely no idea how offended and annoyed people would get by uploading and writing sponsored content. Unfortunately, some people don’t like that bloggers get paid for the work we do or they feel sponsored stuff can never be honest. Prepare yourself for a lot of questions, digs and remarks. Im not being a negative Nancy, I’m just making you aware of what happened to me and a lot of other bloggers too. People are still trying to understand the world of blogging so try not to get too defensive.
Negotiating fees & whether to accept or decline the offer
Remember, you don’t have to be offered money for something, you can ask. Bloggers can’t be expected to work for free, especially if you’ve been at it for years and you’re full time. Its just not fair and it doesn’t make sense. Business is business and we all have bills to pay. Look at your stats and analytics and make sure you’re being paid the right amount for the following you have. Now, don’t be greedy or money grabbing but do stay true to yourself and don’t underestimate your craft. Go with your heart and your gut instinct, if it doesn’t feel right, don’t feel bad for declining. Just because your eyes are seeing ££s, it doesn’t mean the content will work for you or your readers. I have declined a lot of sponsorships because I don’t agree with what I’m being asked, or the content isn’t creative enough for me. Some brands want advert type videos and that wouldn’t fit into my channel so…. decline. Its that simple.
If you can make money from doing something you love then go for it. There are pros and cons to every job so as long as you’re aware of that you should be fine.