Friday, December 9, 2011

Turf war- Working with brands on your blog and my 10c.


I often describe working with brands for the first time, as a little bit like an awkward first date.
I spoke at the Blogger Relations Forum 2011 Hosted by Switched On Media yesterday, in a bid to make it a little less awkward.

(That.... and just quietly... I'm bossy and a control freak so there will be no re writing of unwritten Internet etiquette without my 10c... and it's not that I don't enjoy myself a good turf war, but I grow weary of the paid/ unpaid debate)

Well it turns out that I have a lot more to say... Note- Never. Get. Me. Started..

I was Speaking in the Mummy Blogging category a label that both amuses and un nerves me.

it amuses me, because I considered mentioning that I had briefly entertained the thought of changing my blog name to what's in Emma's vagina for search engine optimization purposes.. (Hey, they asked.....) Mummy bloggers, are the most dangerous and unpredictable of all blogging species.

It un nerves me because I think this is categorizing is causing much confusion in the pairing of bloggers and brands.

Mummy blogger? yes, home made play dough? Not so much....

Among much talk of vagina's I answered questions about Google search statistics, SEO's, twitter, #cabbage, working with PR/brands, the future of blogging in Australia

I am probably not the best choice for a conservative brand, I'm not going to lie. Play School are not exactly banging my door down... its OK.

it is not that I am incapable of toning down the fantastic ness that is myself, to fit with a particular partnership, but I can not pretend that I don't pray for the strength to get me through till Bed time, or that I don't bribe my children with i tunes cards, or that I can actually venture out side of my house with out my seven year old pelvic thrusting in the general direction of everybody he encounters, whilst singing wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle. yeah!

Everybody already knows sadly, and to write otherwise would not engage my readers.

My blog is not morning television, I can't just throw to Moira and cram the Ab Circle Pro down the throats of my readers and hope they stick around till the next good bit.

There is also no journey in it, I like to stick to the guide that I would not take my readers on a journey I wouldn't want to go on. I don't want to write about it, no one wants to read me trying.

To be perfectly honest it is the future of Blogger/Branding relations, the impact on Internet engagement and being able to break the rules of advertising, morph it into something relevant and new that really gives me a little bit of a chubby.

It is no secret that the population has grown weary of the unobtainable ideal's be it body image, or the nuclear family, and I for one am pretty sure everyone knows that a certain sports star did not get his youthful glow from rubbing KFC lard into his face.

If I am going to work with a brand I love, I want to write an advertisement people will google to read.

This is difficult to approach with a brand with out a certain level of trust and here in lies the dating.......

You wouldn't ask someone on a date by saying

" Hey there..... You,
whatever your name is, nice weather we are having.
It's not important what you do, what I need to know is, what are you wearing? If you get a chance could you flick me a screen shot of your measurements? Show us your tits. ...Ta, pick you up at 8

Which is the blogging equivalent of

Hi there blogger,

Nice weather we are having.

Just wondering if you could flick me a screen shot of your current unique hits and your media kit?

Tell us what it is that you are Looking for, let us come up with ideas that we know our readers will enjoy, give always are great for readers too, readers are great for bloggers.

I am not saying Brands must subscribe and read every blog post of ever blogger ever blogged, but please do keep an ear to the ground and twitter, find blogs that fit your demographic, or the style in which you would potentially want your post written.

There seems to be some confusion among Brands as to what it is that we are guarding.
approaching bloggers much in the same way my husband approaches me when I am at the height of PMS activity.

Um excuse me... Is this right..? Dear baby Oprah, please don't hurt me.

I don't know of any authentic bloggers that make it their mission to ruin brands.

Most bloggers I know, interested in working with PR (and some are not) would be more than happy to negotiate a plethora of things as long as we can write about something that we believe in, it the way we know our readers want to read it, and we are adequately compensated for our time.

it is also fundamental that the product or service is something we would be happy to recommend to a friend or family member, because this is what a blog community becomes to a blogger.
Without it the integrity is lost, no one wins.

How well my readers know me, surprises even me sometimes.
Blog readers become engaged an invested in the story and characters of your blog, this trust is what bloggers are fiercely protective of, not the fact that the wrong product was pitched at the wrong time, as long as it is offered with basic table manners.

I am going to stop now, because this is far too long.

Bloggers and Brands have much to learn from each other, I for one, am excited and happy to help.

( cough, cough, I am currently talking sponsor ship for Blog Her 12, to be held in NY, do you think we could help each other out?)

Oh yes I did.

Emma xx


Miss Pink said...

Spot on!
You were fabulous yesterday Emma. I think you were right on the money with "We blog to share more of ourselves because we are more than just mum's"
That is EXACTLY why I blog, and yep, go check out my blog, how much do I talk about my kids there? Not that much at all.
I think the guy who asked the question about our blogs being "time senstive" because "kids grow up" missed the point. You're still a mum even if they are 40. Our blogs are always evolving and changing anyway, as we are.

I also agree that brands need to stop looking at us as "free advertising". How much would they pay a worker for a days work? A lot more than a sponsored post costs! And we spend at least a days work on that post, from researching to writing, to pimping the heck out of that post.
I think brands need to be transparent too, not just us bloggers. They need to straight up say what they want from us, and what they are offering in return. Then they need to TRUST us to achieve that for them.
I agree bloggers aren't out to ruin the name of any company...not unless you wrong us first ;)

Kelley @ magnetoboldtoo said...

Clearly I don't hang around in the right circles cause the only pitches I get are Hey would you like to exchange links? Or here is a picture of my product I can totally write the copy if you don't want to.

No bitches knocking down mah door to work with me. Perhaps it is cause I call them bitches?



Mrs Catch said...

Interesting points. It's so important to remain true to yourself.

ClaireyHewitt said...

This will be a long running conversation as everyone tries to find their place.

Some brands have really 'got' it, two or three I have spoken with in the last two weeks have not 'got' it. However I am positive they will find a blog to write for them. Because two years ago I would have been one of those blogs. Getting to know your own blog and what you want from it can take time, and getting to a place where you are comfortable to say no to brands can also take awhile.

Alannah said...

I am young as a blogger (although have 4 kids under 20), but I can see what you mean. This week I asked a recipe magazine permission to use some of their recipes that I had cooked, on my blog and it took them by surprise that I asked. They gave me permission.I guess it could be a form of free advertising, but it also gives me some blog fodder to write in between writing a Uni essay. And, what is it with little boys and that terrible song and video? My master 5 does the same awful moves. I blame his big sister for letting him watch the music video. smiles, Alannah