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Last week, I wrote a blog post focusing on the issues and debates that often surround blogging but are hardly ever talked about, and my own opinions of the topic. It raised many more questions, thoughts and opinions, and is obviously a debate that will continue for a long time in the blogging community. Thank you for all your lovely words about the post, I did read them all and loved seeing everyone's individual thoughts about it.
Today I'm going to focus on another "hot blogging topic": the sponsored post. I know this is another taboo topic, and also quite a sensitive one at that - there are always ongoing discussions about the reliability and quality of a post or review if you have been paid for it. For example, two bloggers/YouTubers who are constantly sniped at for sponsored posts and free products are Blair and Elle Fowler, of JuicyStar07 and AllThatGlitters21 fame respectively. Although they have garnered a cult following on YouTube, they have spouted an argument and small stream of "Internet hate" of how genuine they now are, being paid a LOT of money for certain videos, despite having disclosed the fact some of their videos are sponsored. So where do you draw the fine line in sponsored blogging?
Now I'm going to put my hands up and admit: I have posted a sponsored post before. You can read it here if you are interested, it is the ONLY sponsored post (alongside this one!) that I have written. I was contacted a few weeks ago by Ebuzzing, part of the Wikeo group, to sign up and start posting about their affiliated companies. For several weeks, I was hesitant and sceptical about the whole affair. My regular readers will know that I am genuine, both on here and Twitter, and I'm just here to talk about my materialistic interests. However, after a series of persuasive emails, I checked out the website and saw that it was a great platform to share both new & established brands, and signed up, which you can do so here.
I do get asked quite a lot of Formspring and in emails about how much I earn from my blog. Truthfully? Google AdSense doesn't earn me anything at all, I am an Eyeko Ambassador but I don't promote it regularly at the moment... These Ebuzzing posts are the only thing I have earned money through, but it is such a great concept, I'm willing to post about them on Daisybutter. It is so easy to sign up and get started, the team are really genuine, understanding and helpful people, and it is completely transparent.
Although you are given a brief to adhere to, you can very easily put your own spin on it. My first ever sponsored post was this, which I decided to incorporate with my Wednesday Wants feature, and focused on items I did want to buy. If the transparency and free-rein wasn't available to me, I can honestly tell you I wouldn't still be writing this! I always aim for honesty on my blog.
There is currently a very diverse range of brands and their campaigns that you can potentially write about on Ebuzzing, including Canon, ASOS, Paypal and more! Personally, if I could introduce a brand to the Ebuzzing group, I would definitely choose Shop Style. There just isn't enough publicity about Shop Style, which is similar to Polyvore, but with a community atmosphere to it. The way Ebuzzing is set up means you can focus your post on what you want: I'd personally choose to run a campaign where you set up a Shop Style look, write about it and the website, and simultaneously promote awareness of your look to gain votes and comments.
What are your thoughts on writing and posting sponsored posts? What do you see as acceptable in terms of "being paid to blog"?

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  1. I don't think there's anything wrong with being paid to blog, as long as the posts are kept to a minimum, they blog has a lot of unsponsored content and as long as the brands sponsoring are something that you can tell the blogger would genuinely use, or that the product fits in with their style.

    What I do think is sad is that some people seem to be a blog for the sole reason of getting free items and making money promoting things they otherwise wouldn't think of discussing.

    I think your sponsored post is a good way of writing them as it blends in with one of your regular features and shows your personality. I don't mind reading sponsored posts that seem genuine and honest but the ones that I skip past are the ones that are so obviously sponsored ("this product is the best thing ever! it's not something i'd ever think of using or posting about because i have no need for it.. but it was sent to me for free. GO BUY IT!") and I've actually recently un-followed someone because they were posting far too many sponsored posts that just seemed a bit dishonest and money-grabbing.

    Can't wait to read the comments on this one! I love these types of posts! xx

  2. I guess I like blogs which seem to come from the heart and sometimes the community feel can be compromised if posting gets a bit too commercial. But the odd sponsored, thought-out post doesn't mean a blog becomes a billboard! I think you have a nice approach.

    It's nice if the sponsorship is made clear. I've not heard of JuicyStar07 and AllThatGlitters21 before. I can't imagine how people feel comfortable if they don't distinguish between their own opinions and things they are paid to say...

  3. I agree with everything Charlene wrote above, to the letter xx

  4. The only opinion I have about sponsored blogging is basically - it's fine if you remain true to yourself, if you post things that you would maybe post even if you weren't getting paid for it, if you know your readers will enjoy it/be interested in it. There's nothing worse than following a blog for months and months... and then all of a sudden it just because paid post after paid post... and you can tell because it doesn't fit in with their style AT ALL. It bothers me when bloggers don't try and fit in their paid posts around their normal posts and they stick out like a sore thumb. It shouldn't be obvious if it's something that you would normally write about. Your ASOS sponsored post was a prime example of how they should be incorporated! Well, I say 'should', but I guess it's a matter of preference....

    I actually thought about joining ebuzzing but I held off for a couple of weeks until I decided if it was for me or not. Unfortunately while I was deciding, it was around the time a lot of people were doing the ASOS one... and it kinda put me off. I'm still considering joining up, but I guess I just don't want to be blogging the same post that lots of other people are blogging just so I can make a few extra pennies, and I'm not sure if that would be a regular thing by joining up to ebuzzing or if the ASOS post was just an exceptionally popular one. It's nothing against those who blogged about ASOS, just not sure if it's for me or not.... I'm assuming that you can 'pick and choose' what sponsored posts you wish to take on with ebuzzing?

  5. I don't think there is a problem as long as people are honest. I read blogs to read genuine opinions and I think getting sponsored for things you have an interest in is fine. Where I have a problem is when people blog solely to get paid, that's not what it's all about.

  6. To be honest I’ve never had a problem with sponsored posts or videos if the person who is writing or making the video makes it very clear it is sponsored. We all have our own heads so we should ultimately decide if the fact it is sponsored changes our perception of the product being talked about.

    As Charlene said, I think it’s sad when people start blogging or making videos for the sole reason of making an income when they genuinely are not interested in the product or whatever they are being paid to review/talk about. x

  7. I don't see the problem. Although, I think sponsored posts should be kept to a minimum otherwise it just looses a blog's 'personal touch'.

  8. I would never do a sponsored post, not that I think anyone would ever want me to anyway, but that's just me. I like to post what I want, when I want. I have nothing against it, I think blogs are personal to the owner and they should be allowed to do whatever they want with it, as long as it's not hurting anyone of course.

  9. I have no problem with blog posts which are sponsored I like them because you get to sometimes preview or learn about new brands to try out, its refreshing to have that :)

    I think sometimes the only thing that annoys me from time to time is when people have blantantly been given the manuscript of what to say or what to include and you can see this more on YT when a number of gurus have done a review and said the exact same thing I find that a bit boring and unimaginative ... and when they do not say I contacted a company or I was contacted by a company I would rather people be upfront and honest and just say listen this company asked me to do a review or to talk about thier products

  10. i think it's fine- as long it's honest and real. x

  11. As long as you are able to give your blog the personality of which makes each blog unique, then I don't see a problem withe the odd sponsored post.

  12. i dont mind reading sponsored posts if they fit in with the theme of the blog and are something that the writer is obviously interested in. like a while ago i was emailed about featuring a product in a potential giveaway but it was for home furnishings and not anything that i would personally choose (e.g. if it was pretty mirrored coasters or candles etc id do it) so i didnt.

    i think people do see you as genuine and your sponsored post was fit around your wednesday wants (which you've been doing forever) so i think you wouldn't get people having issues with it.

    (i have a massive urge to say something chavtastic like "stick 2 ya roots gurl!" but i wont, because that would embarrassing right?! ;)


  13. if they're products you'd write about anyway, go for it, but I wouldn't write about something I don't like for money...


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