21 November 2013

Full Disclosure.

As many of you may have noticed over the past several months, I have taken on a few more sponsored posts, and I will continue to do so. And as much as Yes This Is My Blog And I Can Do What I Want, I also feel like because so many of you have been reading here for so long, I want you to know that I appreciate your continued support.

I know that sponsored/paid posts can get tiring, and some readers get annoyed when a blogger writes  too many of them, which is totally understandable. A lot of people consider getting paid to write, couldn't possibly mean you are being genuine. But from my experience, that isn't always the case. As I continue to navigate my way through this huge community that is blogging, I've grown to realize that it's OK to make money doing something you love. It's a win/win.

I promise you though, I try very very hard to be super selective about the campaigns I do. I will only take on a sponsored post if I feel fits into the theme of my blog, or is something I already do/advocate for in my every day life. It's important to me to keep my blog real & genuine. And I truly believe that I can do that, while working with brands to help promote their products & services.

And? It's fun. It really is. I very much enjoy finding creative ways to tell a story and share my experiences around whatever product I'm promoting. It challenges me & pushes me to dig a little deeper, as a blogger. Plus? The extra money is nice, I know that some may thing that makes me a "sell out", but I'm not. This is still my blog, the same place I've been writing for years. The same place I pour my heart into.

*And ironically, as this post was sitting in my drafts waiting to be published, I received a comment from a long time reader. She expressed to me that she didn't like that I was writing sponsored posts, and I truly appreciate her feelings, I really do. I post here almost 5 days a week, and I only do 2-3 sponsored posts a month, if that. I hope that my readers are okay with that, and will stand by me. And I assure you that everything I write, is in my voice. I am still me. I will always stay true to myself.

*Tell me, how you do feel about sponsored posts? Do you mind when a blogger gets paid to write content? And do you think it's possible for the blogger to stay genuine within their paid content?

27 comments:

Kandice said...

Thanks, Mandy! You're a great writer, and its nice to get paid doing something you love.

Rachel said...

I enjoy it when I see a creative sponsored post--one that goes the extra mile and provides interest and entertainment for readers. Personally, I'd love to get the opportunity to do a few more sponsored posts myself. :P

Justine said...

I totally get the sponsored posts.. I think they are great but it's another thing when they are very frequent and sound forced.. I'm a recently new follower!

Discovery Street said...

well...I think I've said enough about this topic... :) All that to say...a few a month is a good balance in my book.

Sarah [NurseLovesFarmer.com] said...

I honestly can't say enough about this right now, as I really feel on the defensive as everyone seems to have an opinion about it. I have been doing a LOT of sponsored posts. I am on contract as a brand ambassador with 2 brands currently (and I've had up to 4 at once) so I *have* to blog for them each once a month, and I love doing it. I have learned so much doing sponsored posts in the last year. At first I would just write a blurb about a product or campaign, more as a 'promotion' for them just to click publish and get paid. BUT in the last year I have learned that not only do I like it more, but so do my readers, when I make a sponsored post as personal & as creative as I possibly can - and it's very possible to do. I also turn down WAY MORE sponsored posts than the ones I publish. If it's not a product/brand I believe in or don't want to promote as something I personally use...then I don't. I got very blessed to be chosen to be a Frigidaire Canada ambassador this summer and it put a brand new fridge in my kitchen, my other sponsored posts have paid for the groceries to go in that fridge. My blog is a wonderful way for me to supplement my income so I can stay home more with my kids, and I won't apologize for that to anyone.

I have WAY more sponsored posts than ever in November as a lot of brands/toys/products want to promote before Christmas so I made an exception....and it's funding almost (if not all) of my Christmas spending money. I've tried hard to spread them out in between personal posts but sometimes there might be a couple in a row and it's just unavoidable. I just hope my readers feel that I'm genuine about my blogging and don't just click on my blog and see dollar signs. If they do and choose to leave, then that's their right and choice!

Stephanie Clark said...

My thoughts are in some way or another you are promoting a product... every time you post a recipe, your kid playing with a toy, yourself or your child in clothes- someone is GOING to ask who makes that? where'd you get that? what brands do you like for this or that? We are girls...we talk about shopping, cooking, baby products (obviously much more but you know what I mean) so you might as well be compensated for the time you spend on those topics as the "expert" in your readers eyes. They trust you and as long as you are genuine and trust worthy keep on keepin' on. I think like one sponsored post a week is totally fine.

I have more opinions and am kind of struggling with reviewing products in exchange for the product phase right now but I won't monopolize your comment section. =)

Karen said...

I honestly don't mind the sponsored posts because it usually involves a giveaway, and I'm all about the free stuff! I know that you work hard and it's not a job that I envy. You do what you need to do so you can take care of your family. Honestly, family comes first anyway so worry about them first and then let the chips fall where they may. If people are offended by you trying to pay the bills, then they're not the kind of fans that you want, need or deserve.

Shannon said...

I don't mind them at all! After reading someone's blog for several years, you get an idea of who they are and if they are similar to you. You trust their opinion. Like someone else said, you are promoting a product any time you show it on your blog, because people trust you. I think as long as it's not overkill, or the only thing you ever do, and it's a product you actually like, then it's great that you can make money doing something you love!

Summer said...

I also think sponsored posts in moderation are totally fine. As a SAHM, if I can contribute even just a little bit to paying the bills by writing a sponsored post, then why not. If it's a product I already love or like you said, fits in with my blog, then why not?

I think it's the person who constantly seeks out the free stuff just to have something to write about is what turns most people off. Luckily, there aren't too many bloggers that do that.

Lauren @ My Passion Journey said...

Do you ever read The Life of Bon (www.lifeofbon.com)? I think she writes the most amazing sponsored posts. She is so clever and genuine I often don't even realize it was sponsored. I never think you should have to apologize for writing a sponsored post- this is YOUR blog. You do what you want with it!

Jennifer Marcum said...

I wholeheartedly do not think you're doing anything wrong or becoming a "sell out." As a Blogger myself, it's easy to get caught up in paid/sponsored posts. Let's face it, it's absolutely flattering for somebody to think that your Blog is good enough to promote their products!
If your Blog is one of your sources of income then by all means, run as many giveaways or sponsored posts as you want! In the end it's about the direction you want YOUR Blog to go, and about what best for YOU.

http://www.thewannabehousewife.com

Shannon Dew said...

I hate when people get all "wah wah she did ANOTHER sponsored post, how annoying!" because 1. yes it is my blog and I do what I want but 2. it pays my bills. Some times I use that money for fun stuff, an Old Navy shopping spree, lunch a Chick-Fil-A but sometimes that literally pays my electric bill. The great thing about blogging is YOU DON'T HAVE TO READ! LOL. I have gotten one too many "oh here's another sponsored post, do you do ANYthing else?!" comments so I'm a little sensitive.

Rj and Jessie said...

I think it's silly that people care. I barely even notice them. They don't bother me. I read them as in other post. I love your blog so much. You've become one of my favorite bloggers. I put under my favorite tab on my blog. :)

Holly Sosa said...

I think it's awesome that blogging has created a way for moms to share their lives & make money doing it. Get your sponsor on, girl.

Sarah Notes said...

I am SO ok without bloggers doing sponsored posts. First of all, if a blogger isn't sincere, I think it becomes obvious pretty darn quickly.
Second, and maybe this is just because I blog myself, I am deeply appreciative of the huge amounts of time and sometimes even money you put into your blog. It's a job, whether other people recognize that or not!
And finally--it's stinkin' hard sometimes being a SAHM and living on one income, so if in some small way, I can support another mom (or heck, anyone financially!) why not?! If it's a large corporation or business paying you...great! Glad I can help :) And if it's a small business...well, I love being a part of supporting them! I really feel like there's a lot of winning going on here :D

Julia Anderson said...

I think it's only natural to start to make money from blogging. If the opportunity ever come my way for something I like, I will definitely take it. I think it's important to let people know up front that it is sponsored and not try to play it off by slipping it in at the end. I feel like I am being deceived, if not (you don't do this but many others do). Otherwise, if it's a product you believe, go for it!

Fran said...

Honestly, half the time I don't even realize if one of your posts is sponsored or not until after I'm done reading it. I think it's all about balance and not doing them ALL the time. Monetiseing your blog doesn't mean you're a sell out as long as you do't let those things change your blog

Whitney M. @ The Married Me said...

I get why people write sponsored posts 100%. I also hope to get my blog to a place where I can do that too one day. I think what bugs me is when its a huge campaign because I see a version of the same post on 3 or 4 different blogs. Most recently this was kleenex, and a clearasil face wash that come to mind. Like your last post about Yes products I skipped right over because I had already seen that campaign somewhere else. However, I do tend to appreciate a certain etsy shop being highlighted because I find that more interesting and unique at the time.
Overall I don't think it should matter though. No matter the blog I tend to skip over at least one post a week I don't find interesting. If thats a sponsored post then it is, but it could just as likely be a personal post over a topic I'm not interested in.

Kiara Buechler said...

I like your sponsored posts because you incorporate cute pictures of the boys into them. As long as there is a balance I don't mind at all. When a blog turns purely into sponsored posts then I just ignore them in my reader.

Rebecca and Lori said...

As long as you are being true to yourself and to your readers, I don't see why anybody should have a problem with anything you choose to write!
Lori

Kayla K said...

It;s funny you should write this post today becuse it was just this afternoon that I said to myself, gosh I can spot sponsored posts right away! It was for Yes, To bath and body products. I can't figure out why media groups like Pollinate, Collective Bias and Pollinate can't contract each blogger to post at a specific time. 5 posts about one product in one week looks like paid advertising. Where as 5 blog posts trickled out over 2 months maybe one per week looks like natural interest and popularity. Then again this is known to us bloggers and easy for us to spot. To consumer it might look like, "Wow this must be a great product, every one is writing about it" or "Hum.. my favorite beauty blogger is posting about it therefore I can trust her recommendation". Over all I say more power to you to post sponsored work. As long as your have a stronghold on your policys, do it.

Aileen Johnston said...

I think people have far too many opinions about what bloggers do. Surely it's your blog and you can write about what you want? I personally don't mind the sponsored posts, the only thing is a lot of the time, I can't get the products on this side of the pond so they are not that relevant to me. If a blog only contained sponsored posts I would probably stop reading it but only because that's not why I started reading you (or any other blog) in the first place, not because I was making a point. I say you write what you want to write and if you get paid to write a sponsored post go for it!

The girls said...

First off, I don't mind your sponsored posts at all! You actually incorporate them into your blog; it seem seamless when you do it. Not forced at all. And kudos to you for making money on something you love doing! Your blog is real, and that's what keeps me coming back.

On some other blogs I read/have read, it's not so awesome. It's when someone sells out that bothers me. For example, I started reading a certain blog a few years ago. In the last year or so, it's obvious this person has sold out. No sincere posts, all sponsored, and so forced. And still this person thinks she's the best blogger ever. But hey, she thinks she's the best and clearly enjoys free thousand dollar strollers.

jessica | piganddac said...

I don't consider a blogger to be a sellout for doing sponsored posts here and there. I see blogs that have all sponsored posts and I just assume they are not in blogging for the sharing but for making money, and that's okay. With my favorite blogs, I think one sponsored post a week is totally cool. It doesn't bother me. I like when they come across completely honest so it's a review I actually want to read at least. And I think you do a great job at that! I found your blog a few months ago from a pin on Pinterest, and I have always enjoyed reading your posts because I feel like you write as if you're talking to a best friend, very open and honest.

Amanda Jillian B said...

I think of it as writing sponsored posts is how we keep ourselves able to write the other posts.

Jodi said...

I'm fine w/ them as long as they are products you would really use. I just hate when bloggers will write a post about anything and everything just to get paid/free stuff. I think you find a great balance and still blog from your voice so that is great. As bloggers we might as well enjoy some perks from time to time! :)

Elle Vee said...

It's your blog! Post about whatever you like, it's the simple :)