Thursday, February 6, 2014

The 7 Commandments of Working with Sponsors

I get quite a few questions regarding working with sponsors from other bloggers. For me, my sponsors are cute companies that contact me to wear their products. I don't get a ton of people who buy ad spaces, but I do get to work with boutiques. So when I say "sponsor", that is what I am referring to ;) Since I get questions, I thought I would put together a post today talking about the tips and tricks of working with sponsors! Mostly, they are etiquette... However, I have found success following these rules. Of course, there is a lot more than what I'm going to list... But this is my tried and true rock solid game plan ;)
1. Communicate
It's so important to keep in touch with the sponsor!! Let them know when you receive the product, and give them an estimated date of when it your post will go live. I say do it within a week if you can, but NO later than two weeks unless there are special circumstances (in which case, let the PR know!). Make sure to send them the link to your post when the blog post item is up and running! I have definitely had times when I have fallen behind on my posts. However, PR/marketing people are so kind and understanding if you just communicate with them :)

2. Do your research.
When a brand asks to work with me, I like to research them first. Is it my style? Would my readers like it? How new is this company? What do they have to offer? I feel that if you research a company first, you will be able to better introduce the brand to your readers. I'll be honest, it's kind of awkward to tell a company no! But do it rightfully so, and don't just ignore them (guilty). You want to remain professional! Also, SPELL THE NAME OF THE BRAND correctly on your post!!! I've seen it happen a few times.. when a blogger works with a company, but spells the company's name wrong! Sorry, but that is just a rookie mistake. I feel embarrassed for the bloggers who do this...

3. Take QUALITY Photo's
The whole point of working with a sponsor is to help advertise their product... So make it look good! You don't need a fancy camera to do this! Just get some good angles in good lighting, those are really the keys. I'll be honest, I've had times where we take pictures, then a few days later I decide I don't like them, so we go out and re-take! (my husband is a good sport).. But it's definitely all worth it when the sponsor loves the photo's!

There's nothing that bugs me more about a blogger than when I see them wearing a sponsored item that is WRINKLY. gahh! If you are trying to promote a product, make sure to iron out the wrinkles! It takes less than three minutes, and is not that hard. You don't see models wearing wrinkly clothing on billboards and magazine ads.. and since you are modeling the company's clothing, make sure your clothes aren't wrinkly either!

5. Be picky
I have recently been getting a ton of companies asking to "guest post" on my blog... I'm not sure if it's just spam or if it's for serious, but I had a "betting and gaming" company offer me money to post on my blog. When have I ever talked about betting or gaming on my blog? Like, never. haha. Sure, it would be nice to get paid, but it's also important to be true to yourself!

6. Promote
Blog it, tag it, Tweet it, Pin it, Instagram it, Facebook it, do whatever you need to do to promote the product! The more pageviews for you, the more pageviews for the sponsor, the better!

7. Be grateful
Not everyone gets to work with sponsors, so be grateful that you are! If a company is sending you product, make sure to be honest and genuine. Make sure to thank the company for letting you work with them. It really is a privilege to be able to work with cute companies, never EVER take companies and opportunities for granted.

I've had times when sponsors have been rude to me. Like not sending my reader a giveaway prize. Or asking to work with me, then ignoring me or send rude emails when I reply (seriously so buggin). However, I believe that good things come to those who wait! Remember, it may take time for companies to start contacting you. I have been blogging for two and a half years now. I'll be honest, it baffles me when someone who has only been blogging for a short time gets sponsored items all the time, but to each his own right? Although I may have missed out on some opportunities in the past, I have also in return worked with some pretty amazing people. They not only are sponsors, but they become friends as well! A marketing girl I worked with before was so sweet to me, that we ended up going out to dinner a couple times, had a blast, and hope to again in the future (S.S. I'm talkin bout you girl!;). 

I hope that these 7 commandments of working with sponsors helped you get some insight of what I do. It's not just getting something in the mail then taking pictures. There is a lot that goes behind it (ask Justin, haha). Like I said, if you have questions or want more information, email me or leave a comment below :) Or if you have advice/insight for ME, please share!

THANK YOU everyone for always being so kind and leaving the sweetest comments and sending me awesome emails! You are what makes me semi-super-bloggerific. Love you all. ;)
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Abby said...

Thank you so much for sharing these tips! I love reading posts like this, because I find them super helpful in my blogging journey. :)

xo Always, Abby

Dani Nielsen said...

I just love you girl! I think that these are perfection. Thanks so much for sharing your expertise with us! Love you!!
Love Me, Dani Marie

Alicia Hanley said...

Great advice!

Ariel Hamilton said...

Amen to a sponsor never following up with a prize! Glad we bonded over that back in the day (; xx

Rachel said...

Great advice! I've had a few chances to work with sponsors, but I'm waiting and hoping for more in the future!

Lauryn Lasko said...

You're the cutest, answered all of my questions here! And thanks for the email answering questions too.

xx Laur

iesha said...

thank you so much for these tips. it does seem bonkers how bloggers get established in no time, but I can always wait. it's just supposed to fun! lol.


Shane Prather said...

Spot on! Love these tips :)

Chelsey Patti said...

Great info, thanks Rachel!


Natasha xoxo said...

Lovely post, Rachel. Well said!

xo, tasha
twenty-something blog

Lauren {Awkward Girls} said...

ugh, who could ever be rude to you???????? Do I need to key someone's car, or egg someone's house for you, J. Biebs style? Cause I will.

Marsa said...

such good advice :)
so glad to see that things are going good with your sponsors! minus a few haha

Moira Wolf said...

Great advice! I sent a blogger some product (an eyeshadow set, lipstick, AND blush) and she used her crappy phone to take crappy pictures that didn't show anything. and it was for MAKEUP! ugh still upset about it haha. Maybe i'll have to send YOU some!

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