When I first started blogging, I felt so honoured whenever a PR company contacted me. If they asked me to write a blog post for them in exchange for them sharing it on their social media? I would see this as an ok trade and go for it. I also used to enter a lot of those competitions. You know the 'write a blog post to enter our competition and you could win xxxxx' style ones? But I never won any. And those types of posts were never very successful. So what did I gain from them?
But as my blog grew and as the blogging world became a lot bigger a new thought emerged. 'Sponsored posts'. If you don't know what a sponsored post is: its when a company pays you to write about their company, or mention one of their products in a post. And these are a common thing in the blogging world. I've done a few myself but not many. I still don't know what I should really be charging for them and I don't get many offers for them either. But at the same time, I've also decided that I will not blog for free. I've tried it in the past and most of the time it gives me no benefit. The reality is if a company really thought that sharing something on their social media was good enough advertising, then why would they not just do that? I've been there done that and a company sharing a blog post I wrote about them has never made one bit of difference to my stats. In the 'you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours' situation. I've done a lot of scratching and not had it in return. If a company send me something, then of course I'd review it without expecting anything else but I think just a post is different.
But over the last few weeks I've noticed an increased number of emails in my inbox. All asking me to write a blog post or share an infographic etc. But when I email back asking if this company is offering a paid opportunity I always get told no. That or they don't reply at all. I can see it from both sides. A lot of smaller companies don't have the budget to pay a ton of bloggers for posts. But at the same time, I think its so cheeky to ask a blogger to work for your for free. You wouldn't phone up a journalist and ask them to write an article for you for free. The media world is changing. Blogs are becoming the new magazines.
What do you think? Do you think bloggers should be paid to write posts for companies or do you think shares on social media is enough?