Friday, April 17, 2015

Our 5 Rules for Working with Brands

working with brands


1. Many bloggers like to connect with brands this may be to try their products so they can write a review to help other runners, to partner with the brand on a product giveaway or both. One thing many bloggers always say is to only promote a brand that you would enjoy using yourself. I absolutely agree with that to an extent. Yes, if you say
you like a certain product on your blog, then you should be willing to use that product yourself. If you've tried a product and you didn't like it, don't be afraid to say so on your blog. Now, I don't meant to come right out and say the product is awful, but be truthful about what you didn't like and what didn't work for you.  I find these kind of reviews just as helpful. I'm sure the product has some redeeming qualities that others might like, so you could mention those as well.

2. Many Bloggers also say, only promote products that have to do with your blog's niche. We both agree and disagree on this aspect. We not only talk about running products on our blog, but since our blog is primarily read by women (we love our guy friend readers too), we often review products that would appeal to women or products we use in everyday life like shampoo, clothing or cooking products. We feel these items appeal to everyone regardless of niche. That being said, you won't catch us promoting a new set of knitting needles, that would be too far out of our niche and not something that would appeal to everyone. Know what I mean?

3. Being an ambassador for a product is a good way to work with brands you love. That being said, really do your research on the brand and make sure it is a brand you believe in and a product that you use.  Check out the guidelines of being an ambassador. Some will require a certain amount of shares on social media per month. Some will supply you with free products while other will require you to purchase your own product at a discounted price.  Choose a brand that allows you to become involved with like minded individuals. You don't just want to be an ambassador for the sake of putting a new badge on your blog.

4. Be leery of those brands that you may not have heard of that contact you via email to ask you to be an ambassador right away.  We've been approached by a few of these brands about becoming ambassadors. We had never even heard of their product and they wanted us to pay them to test it out and then sell it to our friends. No thanks.


5. You Don't have to be a blogger to work with brands.  If you are active on social media but do not have a blog, you can still work with brands and review products.  Sites like Tomoson, Influenster, Smiley 360, and Blogher are just a few that you can sign up with.

What is your best tip on working with brands?

                        
 

46 comments:

  1. I hadn't ever thought about not being a blogger to work with brands but that totally makes sense. And definitely agree about being transparent and working with brands you love! Great tips! -C

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    1. Yea, Voxbox is a great way for people who don't have blogs to try new products and talk about them on social media!

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  2. Great tips! I think it is so important not to work with everyone that approaches you. There are some bloggers out there that post nothing but reviews, and they are always positive. It makes me think whether they actually like the products or not, or just want free stuff.

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    1. We've actually had several companies hounding us about doing product reviews for them but we really aren't interested in the product so I think it would be weird for us to do it.

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  3. Good thoughts. I personally have no interest in working with brands for my blog...I only review products I have purchased for myself, although it hadn't occurred to me that my readers may be assuming I received the product or other compensation until I read a few posts from other bloggers recently. I may have to start adding clarification to that effect!

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    1. Most readers will know that you are reviewing those products because you WANT to, and not because you were asked to. Generally people will say when they have been approached by a brand. Most of the time anyway!

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  4. Great tips! There are a few brands that I really like, but I don't like the requirements to be an ambassador. So, I continue to mention them occasionally, but try other brands too.

    The 3 I'm an ambassador for, I love them and they are wonderful to work with. And I'd pretty much use their stuff exclusively anyways LOL

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    1. Same here! we would love to be an ambassador for some certain brands we love but the requirements don't really align with how we work.

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  5. All great tips! What is especially important is to be honest: be honest with yourself about the brands you're willing to work with, and be honest with your readers about your experience with the product itself. Just writing positive reviews in hopes of getting more opportunities is a no-no.

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    1. Yes, I want to hear all about the products, the good, the bad, and the ugly, and then I can make my own decision if I want to try it.

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  6. Great approach to this weeks topic. These tips are all really good! I'm not an ambassador to any brands but if and when I do, I'll definitely have to keeps these in mind, especially with tip #2. Thanks for sharing!

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  7. All good tips. My tip was covered, work with brands you would wear. I can tell in reviews when someone just did it for the compensation or piece of apparel.

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    1. The nice thing about working with brands is sometimes you find new to you products that you like, and other times you discover products that might not work for you and that's okay too!

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  8. These are all good tips. I have been contacted many times to try out products for free, but I have turned down most of them, either because I didn't think it was a good fit for me or because I knew I wouldn't like it and didn't want to post a negative review. I just had an experience where I was invited to order and review a product, but the web experience involved in ordering it was so bad that I never even ordered the product. I'm pretty picky with what I like, and I don't want to take the time to review something I know I won't like, even if it's free.

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    1. Yea, not every offer that comes to us is one we are interested in either. I had a similar experience with ordering a product and just thought it wasn't worth it.

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  9. I have never worked with a brand but random companies have emailed me. They are very generic emails so I know they are just sending it out to probably hundreds of bloggers. I never respond!

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    1. I can probably guess what products those are for too...lol

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  10. good tips and i think your #5 tip will surprise lots of people. thanks for sharing and have a great weekend!

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    1. Yea, I think it's nice that people who don't have blogs but are involved with social media have some opportunities to try products too!

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  11. I definitely agree with the tip to only agree to be an ambassador for a product you really love. I like to work very closely with just a few really awesome brands!

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    1. Yea, we found it SO odd that we would get emails about becoming ambassadors for products we've never tried. You can tell that those types of things are mass emails!

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  12. Very helpful as I'm hoping to grow my blog and work with brands. Especially like what you said if you don't like a product.

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    1. Yea, I don't mean to speak negative of a brand but if there is something you didn't like about it, I'd love to hear that too!

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  13. I think the best tip is to only work with brands you use and respect. Integrity is so important for blogging.

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    1. Yes it is. It is nice to discover different brands through reviews though. We have worked with brands whose products we've never tried before but because of trying out the product, we've become customers.

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  14. Great tips! I think my biggest tip is to just stay true to yourself, e.g. don't lie about a product in your review just because you are being compensated. YES on being careful regarding brands that seem too good to be true. I've definitely found that there are strings attached in those situations - NO THANK YOU!

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  15. Thanks for the great tips, as always! I've totally discovered some awesome brands/products via my fellow bloggers, and I'm just now starting to be a little bit more active in working with brands, becoming an ambassador, etc...but, like you said, only for products I honestly use and believe in (like Nuun)! :)

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  16. I have never worked with a brand officially or been given any products! It seems like a bloggers I read have many connections, but i just haven't taken that step yet. I have tried to give honest reviews or share something I think is good.

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  17. these are great rules and ones that I follow as well. I think the main thing is honesty and being honest about the product and what you think of it

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  18. Great tips and thank you for sharing, I learned something!

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  19. These are good tips! I am a pretty new blogger and have yet to work with any brands, so these are tips I will keep in mind.

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  20. Great tips! It does seem like we can get bombarded with requests to use products and blog about them. I try to only agree if I think I will use it.

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  21. Great tips, although I might be interested in knitting needles .... I am very selective about what I review and 9/10 I become hooked on the products myself.

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  22. Great tips!! The random ambassador you've never heard of asking you to pay money to be an ambassador sounds kinda sketchy to me! I agree with your tip about being honest, even if you don't love a product!

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  23. Great tips! Thanks for sharing! I always thought that you had to have a blog to work with brands!

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  24. Awesome tips thanks! I don't work with brands right now but I would love to work with Brooks just because I absolutely love their shoes :)

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  25. Yes, I agree that honesty is the best policy! I think most companies value it because they are interested in learning how to make their product better.

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  26. Great tips - thanks for the great, fresh perspective on the linkup theme!

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  27. Definitely great tips. Thanks for sharing.

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  28. Great tips! I saw once someone post something about being asked to be a brand ambassador and soon they would have a product to review. I asked if she had ever tried it before agreeing to become an ambassador and was shocked when she said no. How can you sign up to promote something you don't even know if you will like?!

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  29. Great tips! I love #2--always appeal to the audience! We're a community, and we have more varied interests than just running/triathlon/yoga/fitness. :)

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  30. Yes, those emails asking you to invest of be an affiliate or an ambassador that require tons of you money and brands you have never heard of - CRAZY! I always wonder who goes for that?

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  31. Great tips! I would say the biggest thing when working with brands is to remember that it should be a mutually beneficial relationship. You should both feel like you are getting value. If a brand is asking for too much of your time without compensation it may be time to renegotiate or walk away, always remember that as a blogger or a social media influencer you have value as well :)

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  32. Great tips. I make it a point to only work with brands I personally endorse or might endorse (sometimes it's a new product that I haven't tried but would have tried at some point on my own). I feel it's important to be genuine to establish trust with readers, and that's something I take pretty seriously.

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  33. Great tips! If I had to give a piece of advice to a new blogger, I would say while it is tempting to say "yes" to every opportunity that comes your way, stop and think if this relationship is right for you - do you / would you use the product? do you believe in this brand?

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Fairytales and Fitness is a personal blog authored and edited by us, Meranda and Lacey. The thoughts expressed here represent only our own and are not meant to be taken as professional advice. Please note that our thoughts and opinions change from time to time. We consider this a necessary consequence of having an open mind in an ever changing society. Any thoughts and opinions expressed within our out-of-date posts may not be the same, nor even similar, to those we may express today.