On Sunday once again a personal text on my blog and my own opinion – this time on the topic of “Blogger Relations and collaboration with bloggers”. Since I very regularly give talks and workshops at companies from the travel segment, lifestyle and technology, as well as fashion, I know how many companies imagine collaborations with bloggers in the future and how at these companies is the appreciation for bloggers.
However, it comes in recent months simply increased again that PR and marketing consultants or even young companies themselves, contact bloggers and ask for a collaboration. So far – so good. Would there not be the small error in the appreciation of bloggers…. “After all, your blog is your hobby – and you get a T-shirt or a cell phone cover from us to boot!”
I’ve already seen a few examples in my Facebook group in the last few weeks where the same experiences are shared and other bloggers can save themselves the work for an email ping-pong.
In general, however, there is nothing against a barter deal (product vs. blog post), as long as the appreciation is right and ok for you. Be clear about the fact that you have to pay taxes on the articles and please include these costs in the preliminary talks. What I have noticed several times in the last few weeks, however, are quotes such as.
“Spending money with bloggers is absolutely not our modus operandi”
“Bloggers do the blogs for fun and I don’t get paid for my hobbies either”
“There are min. 500 bloggers who would like to work with us, but we have chosen you exclusively and would like to work with you exclusively”
Not to forget, of course, the absolute classic “We are a young startup from XYZ and have no budget, but have loved your blog for years and would love to…”.
The list could of course be extended indefinitely and many companies simply mentioned once, but that would probably exceed the length of the blog.
Blogger Relations – Mutual Appreciation
The questions that have arisen frequently in recent weeks, including in my workshops with fashion bloggers and lifestyle bloggers is, how much can I charge for a blog post if the company has ordered an advertorial from me? What is a fair price? Should I be transparent about my pricing directly in the media kit or on the site? Is there a formula by which I can determine an approximate value?
That if you were to get a sports car in return, you should of course not still negotiate about the extras as a regular or new blogger probably goes without saying. The value of the product should always be taken into account and, if necessary, offset and, of course, only take orders for which you want to advertise on the blog. Never risk your own authenticity. What is the use of a placement to good payment, if it seems unbelievable.
A payment of a blogger also always serves as an appreciation, the amount is different for each blogger and depends on the reach, target audience, niche, age of the blog and also effort for the posting or effort for the YouTube video clip. With statements such as “We never pay money to bloggers”, a clear statement of appreciation of bloggers is already given and you can often save the time for further conversations.
In general, there is still nothing against a blogpost or a report for a young label, which completely suits me – where I can find myself as a blogger and simply “feel like” writing about it and introducing it to my readers. If it’s interesting to me, if it’s interesting to my readers and it’s all right – then why not introduce it…?
It goes with the “Bloggen” not always directly over the financial aspect – straight if I as Blogger even, about it to report would like and perhaps even the enterprise inquired.
Blogger are cheaper than banner advertising
The problem, which exists primarily with some “SEO companies” and bad “PR companies”, is the appreciation or interest in an honest cooperation. It’s simply about getting as many links as possible (in the best case even do-follow links, but more about that once in the future) for as little effort as possible.
The less I have to pay the bloggers, the more remains for me, or my company. The “advertising partners” usually buy a placement on 50 blogs or similar for 5,000 – 10,000 EUR, the less subsequently must be paid out to bloggers, the better and the more profit remains with the company.
The problem for honest bloggers, with appropriate marking of blogposts, use of Google-compliant links, etc., however, is often that the advertising partner is placed correctly, but on 199 other – especially young blogs – is not marked and linked with Do-Follow link.
The result identical – it is penalized in the long run in the Google ranking all pages that advertise the company. There are some examples in the last 12 months for travel companies, fashion accessories or even lifestyle gadgets, which have subsequently led to the devaluation of the blogs, although the blogger has behaved correctly.
As a blogger, it often only helps to reject such cooperations in general or to ask the PR company directly how many blogs the article should be placed on. The larger the number, the more the term “SEO optimizer” is in the footer of the request, the more cautious you can be.
Another good indicator is always, the better known the company and the lower the payment, the more links are bought. Of course, I would be happy if an Italian sports car manufacturer wants to book a large advertorial route – but if the payment is then but in the amount of a bus ticket, you can directly calculate what the cooperation is only to run.
Fair payment for good work
There are some companies and PR agencies that have been transparent and open in cooperations with bloggers for years and with whom I also like to work together already in the long term. Personally, I also prefer to have an open conversation, they appreciate my work and my blog, but may pay 10 EUR less, but comes at the next cooperation directly back to me, instead of a weeks-long ping-pong until a decision is made.
One of the most popular calculation examples for PR companies is the hourly wage. Quote: “For a blog post you need about 2 hours, 1 hour for image editing and another 1 hour for the photos. We’ll even pay you another 10 EUR an hour for your hobby and round it up to 50 EUR”.
What is not taken into account at all in this calculation, of course, are the “ancillary costs” for the blog, from camera equipment, hosting & domain fees, hours of work until the blog has first reached status, etc. – and so of course the numbers are beyond reality.
A few years ago, there was still the Google Page Rank (Google PR) as a benchmark, but it is no longer maintained and updated. There was an overview at which Pagerank and which unique visitors you could move in which price range with a blog post and at the same time many PR companies and brands have oriented themselves. In today’s time, there are only other values, or your own feeling, what you can take for it.
How much can I charge for a blogpost?
Of course, it is difficult to set an exact amount and the question – “How much can I charge for a blogpost?”, but many companies are somewhat guided by the following figures
New and freshly opened blog – min. 50 EUR
Blog with 6-12 months and regular blogposts – min. 100-150 EUR
Blog with 24 months of experience and regular blogposts – min. 250 EUR
Blog with 36 months experience and regular blogposts – min 400-500 EUR
In addition, there are of course factors such as high visitor numbers, a large active follower base and elaborate postings, which can then quickly double or triple the amounts. With the follower layer it is of course of no use to have bought just 15,000 followers from Iraq and Afghanistan, who are however absolutely not active. It is better to have only 5,000 followers, who read and like every blog post from you, than 15,000 or 50,000 followers for your own EGO.
In the USA, Great Britain and Asia, the Page Authority and Domain Authority are often used as a substitute for the Google Page Rank since 18 months and are set in relation to the Unique Visitors of the page and also in Germany more and more attention is paid to the factor.
On the page SEOREVIEWS you can determine your own Domain Authority (DA) and your Page Authority (PA) and orientate yourself “test-wise” once on the table. Here, of course, it also depends a little on whether you write as a fashion blog, as a niche blog or how your followers look like. Experience shows that the values for blogposts in Germany are slightly lower than the international values.
|Unique Visitors (VA)||DA/PA <20||DA/PA <30||DA/PA <40||DA/PA <50||DA/PA >50|
|up to 5.000 UV||75 EUR||150 EUR||250 EUR||350 EUR||>500 EUR|
|up to 10.000 UV||150 EUR||250 EUR||350 EUR||500 EUR||>750 EUR|
|up to 20.000 UV||250 EUR||350 EUR||500 EUR||750 EUR||>900 EUR|
|up to 40.000 UV||300 EUR||500 EUR||750 EUR||900 EUR||>1000 EUR|
|up to 60.000 UV||450 EUR||750 EUR||900 EUR||1200 EUR||>1200 EUR|
|The prices are of course only approximate and average values and can vary significantly depending on the topic, effort and number of followers. A blog post with a screenshot and 300 words is of course easier to write than an elaborate product presentation and a product test over several weeks with a conclusion. Discounts of 30% are possible here, but so are surcharges of 200% according to effort and number of followers.|
Notes on the table for bloggers (Update 14.01.2016):
In recent days and weeks, I got more frequent inquiries from bloggers and companies, whether the values for website would be correct or justified, so once again a small addition:
Who has his blog at Blogger or Blogspot and does not use his own domain – for example fashionblogger.blogspot.abcd receives the value of the Domain-Authority and Page-Authority not for his own domain, but for the domain www.blogspot.abcd on which all blogs run. Especially if the blog runs only a few months, you blog only irregularly, etc. a DA/PA value of >50 is absolutely unrealistic. Here you can consider the following values:
Up to 1 year with regular postings per week = DA/PA <20.
Up to 2 years with regular postings per week = DA/PA <30
Up to 3 years with regular postings per week = DA/PA 30-40
A t-shirt and a bra is not payment
Just in the last 12 months there were again some classics, where you just have to ask yourself, why do you complain about the “bad pay” and “bad appreciation” of bloggers in Germany, if you do it yourself.
Bloggers with several years of blogging experience, a medium range, etc. accept a cooperation for a bra for EUR 14.95 of a well-known lingerie chain, which also specifies exactly how the blogger has to position himself (either lying on the bedspread or with a semi-transparent blouse, tight jeans and pumps at an outdoor fashionshooting, etc.). Since I, like many other bloggers then also can no longer understand when it is subsequently complained that no good collaborations are possible and no prices are paid in Deutschlang.
Giveaways for readers?
Newly added to the cooperation are apparently raffles for blog readers – of course without compensation. “We will send you the special, unique and legendary photo book from us as a voucher, which you can then raffle among all readers…”. Raffling off a new photo book, a new smartphone app, or a new shower gel every day is certainly not in the blogger’s mind, and the benefits – and costs – are of course out of proportion.
The classic from the range is a famous T-shirt store, which offered me for the raffle a T-shirt with freely designable hangover T-shirt (price about 15 EUR) and whose cooperation I of course politely refused. The answer was afterwards, one could offer me also ten T-Shirts, which I could raffle afterwards to 10 readers and may send individually. The question of additional shipping costs was of course no longer answered.
A giveaway is clearly more effort than a regular blog post, both in the run-up, as well as in the post-processing and too many giveaways make your blog readers in the long run also not happy. I’m now looking forward to the Christmas season again, where every other blog will give away a shower gel for the 1st,2nd,3rd and 4th Advent 🙂 …
Barter deals or prefer payment?
I generally have nothing at all against the above mentioned barter deals – but under two conditions:
The product must fit me and my blog one hundred percent and I can use it accordingly
The product is worth a blog post or more and it’s not in competition with other partners I frequently and happily cooperate with.
However, if the product is still interesting for me but is significantly lower than the amount for my blogpost, there is still the possibility to contact the partner and request a cooperation of mixing barter deal plus on-top payment.
I can only state from my own experience, rather one deal and one cooperation less on the blog, in addition, in contrast, only cooperations behind which I can stand more than 100%. A blog that degenerates in the long run to an “advertising slingshot” (which in the worst case does not even mark the contributions) – slips with me directly from the feed reader and I renounce in the future to all further blogposts.
Conclusion – Blogger Relations – Collaboration with Bloggers
Who offers professional blog posts and “advertising” for partners, should also be paid fairly. It is complained again and again in the various blogger groups that in Germany (Austria, Switzerland) in many things can not yet keep up with the U.S., Asia, Great Britain or even Italy. Bloggers already enjoy a different reputation there and also receive quite different compensation for their blog posts.
But aren’t we “bloggers” also responsible for this ourselves? I think so – as long as there are still bloggers who offer your years of work for an article for 14.95 EUR, you do not need to wonder about such statements of PR agencies “We generally do not pay bloggers – it’s your hobby”.
I can only hope in the future that more and more bloggers join and these “agencies” and “companies” also clearly say that a professional cooperation for the 100th special T-shirt or the 500th special cell phone cover is not possible. A polite refusal with reason belongs for me still to it, whereby the reactions are then partly also very interesting – but that would be enough reading material for the next “Sunday Blogpost”…
I wish you first of all a sunny Sunday and many more – good – cooperations with great partners and brands… Have fun “blogging”…