The Honest Truth Behind Brand & Blogger Collaborations

I have been thinking about writing this post for weeks now, ever since I launched my very own business in 2018. I am now exposed to a wealth of what goes on behind a brand and it’s safe to say that there are two sides to a coin when it comes on to brand and blogger collaborations.

Social media can make and break a brand. I have been observing a lot bloggers on social media, now stating that brands are not willing to pay for their services or are undermining their following. This is all true, because I have experienced this as a blogger too.

Brand & Blogger Collaborations| The Story of The Blogger

Blogging is not as easy as people think. There is a lot of work that goes into running a long term blog. The hours it takes to put together a blog post with images/videos you’d wonder how I have a full time job. Just shooting alone most times takes up my entire day, not to mention editing the pictures and to ensure that are great for your readers/followers.

Brand & Blogger Collaborations

There is also a lot of work in maintaining a blog, going self hosted is not free and having your blog look physically appealing is not free either. So now, there are expenses relating to self hosting, installing themes and sometimes promoting your blog for a wider audience.  Not to mention, investments, maybe you invest in a good professional camera, like it did. Professional cameras can be very costly.

Based on my experience, bloggers rather paid work or products in return for a review which is fair enough. This understandable because of the above mentioned factors, their blog must be sustainable and maintained. If there are expenses, there must be an income from somewhere or multiple sources to help maintain it’s sustainability. There is no question about that.

Brand & Blogger Collaborations| The Story of The Brand

Brands have been emerging out of nowhere a lot these days. You can start a brand and I can start a brand, with enough motivation and commitment. Starting a brand or business is not easy. Most times you start out with very little, hoping to grow and become profitable. With technology these days, it’s easy to start out very little. No need for stock management, production cost and location expenses, you can start your brand right in the comfort of your own home.

Most brands who reach out to a lot of bloggers are “start up brands” or as I would like to call them “young businesses”.  They are reaching out to influencers/bloggers in order to penetrate newer customers to promote their products and/ or services to. If you notice, well established brands have no need to reach out the bloggers because they are already “established”. Many brands have very low budget, as they would mention in “collaboration emails” which is true for some, if the above mentioned factors are true.

Truth Behind Brand & Blogger Collaborations

The true point of a collaboration should be to create a mutually benefiting relationship between both parties involved. Most brands reach out by offering a generous discount amount off their products to bloggers who will in turn review on their channels. This is insulting for bloggers, as we are seeing it as us paying to work with you and then in turn promoting your product.

Brand & Blogger Collaborations | A Real Story

The Brand

I have experienced this as a brand, because I tried doing the same with numerous bloggers and one blogger in particular was so upset she lashed out on social media about the proposal. My blogger heart realized that it was indeed unfair on her side and I had to write to her apologizing for what was a one sided pitch for a collaboration.

Most times as start up brands, we don’t have much to offer. A company is in business to make money unless you’re running a non-profitable organization and that is the blatant truth.

Imagine sending products to review to bloggers who claim to have hundreds of followers and not getting one purchase or sale in return…

Now that is an open wound right there, now lets add some salt. As infuencers, what are we really offer to brands? Can we provide return on investment? We want to be paid for our services but are we delivering? A brand is baring all of this in mind when they reach out for collaborations. In deed, asking me to purchase to promote does come off as offensive, but how can a brand really guarantee that you can deliver should they be willing to invest in your services? This only can be done by building trust and partnership.

The Blogger

Brands should definitely desist from undermining bloggers followings and stop with the ridiculous collaboration emails. Reach out with opportunities that is equally benefiting for both parties. Bloggers it’s okay to test the waters first before we dive in. Now lets chat in my comments.

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