The sad truth about blogging…

Lots of things about blogging are wonderful – the invites, the freebies, the people you meet, for example. The image of the typical blogger is a cliché nowadays. Apparently we’re all blonde, thin, young and live in lofts with bare or bright white walls that are full of furniture from a Scandinavian modern design classic budget.

Mum bloggers have to be all that and have spotless children…but no childcare. Childcare significantly reduces your credentials. Those nanny mums get slotted into the ‘mum style blogger’ space.

I come under ‘lifestyle’. Lifestyle is the catch all. It’s the type O. Anyone can take it. There’s something for everyone. Unless they’re my kids – they might want to leave it alone.

I can cover anything I want – and that suits me. As I always say “we’re all multifaceted”. My readers don’t seem to mind the eclecticism. I would love to think that it’s my USP. It probably isn’t – but I can dream.

The only problem is that it pays nothing…that’s the sad truth. Now, for the British readers, let me add to the discomfort by discussing money. Bloggers get paid in ‘stuff’. We get freebies. We get goodie bags. We get to sit on famous people’s knees (don’t ask – I gave up booze soon afterwards). We get to scrub up nice every so often.

Those are lovely things but I am not a 20-something with a large disposable income, great hair and an endless supply of cashmere and camisoles. I have two daughters who aren’t bothered by mud (good) or the value of nice things (bad if their dirty hands are anywhere near them). The gorgeous things that come in those exquisite packages are precisely useless for them.

What isn’t is money…cold, hard, dirty cash money. And that’s something that’s actually pretty hard to make with blogging. If you aren’t super high profile, you won’t attract advertisers. If you don’t have a good reach, you won’t get paid for posts.

For me, that was never a problem. I started this blog as a creative outlet and I don’t do advertorials. I hate them – people take the money and write either a glowing review or a clinically factual version. The latter means the product is crap, by the way – you don’t get another gig if you bitch about a product, after all.

There is, however, a third way. You can become a brand ambassador or affiliate. I used to be a bit snotty about it – partly because I was envious of the bossy glossies who always seemed to get the glam gigs, to be honest.

I, however, got offered software or pans or nappies. They pay well but they’re just not, well, me. I don’t know enough about IT to recommend a software package in glowing terms, I don’t like cooking – and I’m not the perfect mother that cloth nappy companies dream of. I abstained – and kept a modicum of integrity.

I waited – with every intention of surviving on quiet dignity and beans on toast until I found something that I could actually put my name to. I waited almost 3 years. 3 years. That is a lot of baked beans, people. An awful lot. Poverty isn’t very dignified either.

Finally, however, I have a few brands I can endorse. I did my due diligence and have stuck by my ethical business model. I will be running editorial about them and I will be wearing and using them. I’m excited because they mean that I’m doing well but I’m also aware that it might alienate my readers.

I am guilty of getting jaded about product placement. It can feel like you get whacked over the head with tacit advertising. The result is that I won’t be tempted to forcefeed anyone.

I intend to review beauty boxes once a month and use Stella & Dot products in my fashion editorial – if appropriate. If you find that distasteful, I totally understand. The alternative was asking readers to become investors. I didn’t particularly want to ask you to pay for the pleasure of my company but I do still want to be able to be your hostess here.

So stick around by all means. The advantage of this new development is that there will be a lot more pretty things on the blog. The disadvantage for some of you is that you may have to scroll down more than normal.

Hopefully my readership won’t drop too much. I’ve got a good thing going, I know. I just wouldn’t mind having a good thing going that can pay my rent.

8 thoughts on “The sad truth about blogging…

  1. Really well written blog post, i am now a new follower 🙂 However i feel like those glitz and glam bloggers all start somewhere and in the beginning if you want to be a “paid” blogger you take those small jobs that perhaps don’t relate to you however help create a small income. I’ve had lots of products sent to me to review and the knowledge isn’t there at first but that’s where research comes in and then more often than not i become relatable and a lot of the companies that have sent me stuff actually help communities and plant trees with every product sold and have good morals which i respect. Can’t expect big companies to want to work with bloggers who haven’t worked with any companies really before. Great blog, i really enjoyed this! & I look forward to reading more from you.
    – L

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you. I agree with you about smaller projects. I just try not to review things just for the sake of it. I do agree that sometimes research is part of the fun but I have a problem with people who write good reviews for bad products. I tend to be quite picky or to not take payment if it’s a bad review and they expect good.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah I feel that. Especially writing about free products I feel can be a bit repetitive on blogs. I also feel a lot of people on youtube are not genuine or really know what they are talking about so they tend to repeat themselves.
        – L

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Good for you. I admire you holding out for something you can actually back. I feel very strongly about writers ( female writers in particular) having the right to take care of them and theirs.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I know, believe me. Its always the people who are genuine and sincere that worry about coming off as otherwise. People feel funny about money, but the fact is, we all need it. You do great work, you provide something of value, and there is nothing wrong with being compensated for that. ❤❤❤

        Liked by 1 person

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