+

My Answer To Advertisers

It seems lately bloggers are inundated with requests from companies to pimp their items. Some of those emails benefit both the blogger and the company: maybe they will send you some free swag, promise to share your blog on their social media, or the best option, pay you for your time and effort.
If you blog, you know the majority of those emails offer none of the above.

my answer to working with advertisers

The emails usually go something like this:
 Dear Blogger,

    My name is Jane Doe and I represent Company ABC. While browsing the internet I couldn't help but notice your flair for style and taste. That's why we thought your blog would be a perfect fit for this campaign.
    We're reaching out to a select group of bloggers to blog about Company ABC. We'd like you to create a blog post about Company ABC. We think your readers will really enjoy it. Then we'll pick our favorites and might share them on social media! This will be a great opportunity for you to post about us.
I look forward to hearing from you,
 Jane Doe

I get these email blasts at least 4 times a week. I used to get really angry every time. Why would I want to do this? Don't they know I don't work for free? I usually want to fire off a nasty email back. I haven't necessarily worked both sides, but I do know that PR and Marketing companies are often hired to work with the company to help get the word out about their stuff. So that means if I yell at them, there is a good chance I might work with the same person for a different company down the line.
So instead, I came up with a blanket email response that I send back each time. Explaining my worth, how much I charge, and why they should work with me:

my answer to advertisers

 The number in red, I change up depending on the advertiser, the product, or what they're asking of me. I keep a saved draft of this on hand so I can quickly copy and paste an answer, instead of concocting an email each time. It also helps me keep my cool since I have a standard answer each time.

It's important for bloggers to know your worth! Don't let companies run you over, you do have some say in your compensation. At the very least, they can respond with a no and move on.

Do you get these emails from advertisers? How do you respond?

*****

P.S. Don't forget! Tomorrow is Song of the Week Wednesday link up! Find the details here, or just link up your current favorite song to the end of your blog post!

Helene in Between Song of the Week Wednesday
Helene in Between Song of the Week Wednesday

Comments

Thankfully through posts such as this one I've learnt that my time is worth something. I always respond with a blanket response, much the same as yours….I always make a point of letting them know that my blog is a source of income for my family and I do not work for free….but I do say it nicely 🙂

Thank you so much for writing this! It's nice to see a polite way to ask for compensation!

Thats a good template response!

I get emails like this a lot and I never know how to respond. Usually if I don't like the product or it doesn't fit with my blog, I say thanks but no thanks, or just don't respond. Usually because I forget. When I am interested in something, I say yes, but haven't really felt like I've gotten much benefit from these relationship – minus one or two repeat partnerships. But overall, I guess I don't know what I'm worth. I should figure that out, because these posts take some time and I guess it's important to be compensated for that time. Thank you for sharing!

Perfect timing for this post! I just received my first email "offer" like this and wasn't quite sure how to respond. It seems like from the email I received they may even want ME to pay a fee to have a post published. That's even worse than doing it for free! Thank you for giving me an idea of how to respond. I don't want to be rude either but I certainly want to make it clear that no, I won't be paying to post, thanks anyway.

This is so helpful! I never know how to respond. Thank you so much for sharing 🙂

I don't mind doing some for free, but it BETTER come with exposure. No way in heck will I do a 'we may pick you' promotion. I have a love/hate relationship with advertising, but it seems to be the way blogging is going. At least we can be picky and choosy!

I do posts like this for free often BUT ONLY if I feel strongly about the product and the company works with me in other ways (i.e. promotes my blog, forms a long-term relationship, etc.). But if it's anything else, I reply with a similar response to yours. I work in content marketing with no budget, so I understand where companies are coming from, but there is a right and wrong way to do it. Generic e-mails don't work, but personalized, relevant ones do. I will share something for free if I generally enjoy it 🙂

Thank you for sharing this! I've started getting these emails and wasn't sure exactly how to respond. This is very helpful!

This is probably one of my favorite posts you have written! I just received an email like this and fired back with a price.. Now I just wait and see (insert evil grin and hands rubbing together)

I get those emails too and they are so aggravating! I love your response!!

I love this response! Thanks for offering a classy and tactful way to say "no" when brands are essentially trying to rip you off. I never want to burn bridges but I have such a difficult time saying no…I'm always worried I will sound mean.

This is great! I used to respond back and just say I wasn't interested at this time or ignore the email completely. I recently started following up stating that I was not offering free sponsorship or advertisement. Now I am thinking that was possibly rude. Whoops!

This is extremely helpful. I've been getting more of these lately. I struggled with what I should do! I wondered that if I didn't, then would I damage a relationship because they may ask to work with me later (with some kind of compensation) but then again, if I did – would this be the start of something that I didn't want to get in to.

Thank you ever so much for the advice!

I either don't reply (if time is short, these are the emails that don't get answered) or I reply saying I'll do it for $$. I don't work for free.

I work with bloggers, and I try to make sure that the brands see us as online journalists. 88% of people would buy a product through a recommendation on a blog over what they read in a magazine or see on a celebrity, and brands need to know the worth of bloggers. That being said, I know a lot of brands are concious of Google and their rules on "paying for endorsement" so its a bit of a grey area, but I believe in being compensated for the time it takes me to write something.

That's a great answer! Although I don't think I'll need it anytime soon since I dont get these types of emails! Clearly my blog is not entertaining!! 😀

You're a mind reader. A real living mind reader. I've started getting e-mails like these and have just ignored them because a) what? my blog is tiny and b) doesn't sound legit!

I love this post!!! I take the same approach and with smaller companies find that "they don't have a budget for this" and would I still like to do it anyway…ummmm no LOL! I really like the way you worded your email, going to include some more stats in mine!! Thanks girl!

I tend to ignore these emails, or write back and try to politely say that I'm not interested because the product/company doesn't really fit with my blog. But this is a great, great post – I think I'll draft up a letter like this to keep on hand too!

This is a fantastic post, and something I need to remember when companies reach out to me. Typically I ignore, mostly because my blog numbers are so small and I feel like I'm being trolled! However, it's nice to have the option to respond with something as well-written as your example!

PS – I was supposed to be in Dallas this week for work and was dying to meet you, but the trip was canceled, womp. Hopefully when I'm in town in December or January we could grab drinks?!?

I think this is great! I get these too and a lot of time I just delete. I think this is a better approach lol.

I've gotten several of these lately. They never seem genuine or like they've ever even glanced at my blog. I just tend to ignore them, as most other people seem to be saying.

I will admit I've been tempted to do it because I was flattered, but ultimately it just isn't worth my time for nothing in return.

such a timely post, when I got my first email, I was a newbie and oh so flattered, and then a few more and I wondered is this normal, what should I do. Last night for the first time I did something similar to you and sent back a price and then got a PFO from them, oh well…. I guess if others will do it for free then I need to expect they may not like what I reply. Love your letter though

GIRL. those emails drive me nutso. No I don't want to talk about a cup that helps women pee standing up or a cup that catches your female problems. Couldn't pay me all the money in the world.
Ps: I may need a consult soon. 🙂

I literally have one of these emails sitting in my inbox waiting for me to respond! Thank you for this post an empowering me to say something like this. Because it's definitely how I feel, but sometimes I feel guilty because I don't have a huge following! No more 🙂

Excellent advice! I actually get that email a few times a month and never know what to say. I'm not "big" do I feel weird asking for compensation, however, why should I do it for free? It takes s lot of time and effort to put those posts together. Thanks for the template!

I am glad you touched on something like this. Blogging takes work and there is no reason your work shouldn't be rewarded/compensated!! Great post!

Love this! You're such a blogger pro 🙂

That's a good idea! I also get a ton of these emails. I just consider them spam and delete–I honestly wondered if any bloggers took them up on the offer of…nothing!

"At this time we don't have a marketing budget." What I've learned is that the PR company is hired by the company to find advertising at no additional cost. So the company does have a marketing budget… And it's going to the PR company.

Yes, yes, yes. I've had such a problem lately with email upon email asking if I'll write this post for basically nothing. The pitches that actually interested me I've given into in the last few months but another blog friend told me that I'm underestimating myself and cutting myself down. This response example you posted is exactly what I needed to see. I need to be confident in my blog and my worth because there are people who will pay for my work! It's happened. I'm just way underestimating myself. Great post!

You know, this is going to sound absolutely stupid, but I never thought that I could reply like that. I figured my blog was "too small" to garner a price tag, but this I guess if they like my blog enough, they should be willing to pay me for my time and effort. This is amazing! I've had an a-ha moment! Thank you.

This is great. It shows you are professional and serious about your work. Any company would have to understand this.

what about people you don't want to work with? even if they paid me, i don't want to work with companies that sell mens suits, it's just not fitting in my life or blog – so how do nicely say no? i don't really get a lot of emails anyway, guess my blog isn't that popular lol

Thanks Helene… I have been so irritated by these. I just got one on "Talking About Your Medicines" from some drug recall org. Like I want to broadcast personal info or be anyone's go to for health care advice… ummm no.
On the other hand I just contacted a company to see if they had a blogger program for their products which are pricey and I am dying to try. No luck but that one has worked before and I have gotten some cool free stuff just for asking and writing a review post!

Thanks for the template… definitely using!

Such a great tip – thanks so much for being so transparent and showing how you handle this situation! I've gotten so tired of these "work for me for free" emails that lately I've just been deleting them and not responding at all. But I've realized that I may be losing opportunities to connect with potential companies by doing this. I loved how you kept it positive, but still explained your worth, and the value behind what you do!

I've started getting these recently and I've considered participating. Because I don't have a very large following I feel like I'm not at the point where I can ask for monetary compensation. My thoughts are if I do a couple of these unpaid ones now they can serve as examples down the road when I'm asking for compensation.

Your response is perfect! Definitely have to remember this for when I get back into blogging again. There are so many people who just dont understand the time and effort that goes into creating and promoting each post.

I'm so, so glad you posted this. I'm not a big blogger by any means, but I like to thank I have some value in the blogging world! What benefit do I get from pimping out your product???

Ugh! I get these everyday too. I always reply back with a message similar to yours. The best was when one company offered to negotiate the budget, I told them my rate, and they replied and said their max payment they could do was $5…. like seriously!!? What's to negotiate with that!?

receiving that many…
the problem is that somtimes you will identify as spam en email that it is not!

Perrrfect response.
Don't worry its not just blogging, I used to work for a very large magazine in Australia and people would send me this all the time, saying "our readers would love it", "free content for the magazine". Most of the time it was boring crap. I sold advertising and they just wanted it for free. As if!!

PR has become such a joke companies believe its the new 'free' way of marketing.

I feel your frustration!! You tell them!!

Does it work? Do they ever say, "Ok, we'll pay you." ? I feel like this is much smarter than lambasting them (though that might be more satisfying), because it opens the door for a better opportunity.

I had a similar situation with a client who kept requesting revisions months after approving and payment. Finally, I was fed up and was going to tell him off, and then I realized I should probably just tell him revisions weren't free until infinity and that I'd need payment for what he was requesting. It was funny, because his response was "I was intending to pay for it all along" but that obviously wasn't true, because he hadn't asked about charges or anything. Anyway, I got paid, so that's what matters.

Thanks for sharing your form letter – I bet that's going to come in handy for a lot of people!

I get these a lot too! Love your response to them – usually I just ignore them, but this is great! Do you ever get a return answer from the company?

http://www.madeintheshadeblog.com

AH thank you for this! I am so tired of these emails. I just usually say, I require some form of compensation. I've had one person promise me some money (not much but whatever) and then flat out disappeared…never got that payment through paypal.

Of course, I don't have quite the popularity you do but it does take time and time is money! Thanks girl!

I sometimes get these emails too and my response is the ol' cold shoulder. i.e., i don't respond. honestly, i know it's rude but usually i just forget to respond to something to meaningless. i do the same thing with "happy birthday nicole" FB posts. so yeah, basically i have a -10,000 internet karma.

I always also look up the company's reputation online. One company that had emailed me was on a scam website, and I actually sent that to them letting them know that their online reputation was terrible and that I couldn't recommend them to my readers… Do they really think they can get online-savvy people to promote them for free? Loved that you posted about this Helene!

Girl as always you are my go to for all things blogging related. What a great template how to respond. I get these all the time and just delete them but your way is such a better way for potentially keeping communication open. Do most of them respond back that there is not payment involved?

Standing ovation! I get the same ones and usually just delete them! ha! I need to take your response and start letting the know my worth. I appreciate you being so candid with all of us! 🙂

OH MY GOSH YES SONG OF THE WEEK WEDNESDAY. I've been getting these emails lately as well. I usually just ignore them. Thank you so much for this post, I needed it! I have no idea how to respond because I don't feel right to make them pay. After all, I only average 3,000 pageviews a month still. What would you suggest a proper payment would be or a baby blogger like me?

It's so frustrating! I respond that I require payment and some respond nicely saying that at this time they can't pay but what really pisses me off is that some never respond after payment is questioned, how unprofessional! I do have a question for you though. After sending your blanket email, did some companies change their minds and decide to pay you?

Thank you for this. I have been getting quite a few of these lately, and wasn't sure how to respond. Great post!

Excellent advice! I've typically just ignored these e-mails in the past but I think I'll go your route and create a draft e-mail to send back. I don't work for free!

I think keeping email templates for this kind of this is incredibly useful. I also think not responding to these kinds of email blasts is better than replying to ever single one; most of the time they are angling for free content and aren't receptive to paid-for blog advertising.

Personally, I don't accept advertising on my blog for several reasons and I make this clear on my disclaimer page but most PR companies don't read this because they are blanket emailing several dozen bloggers all at once.

I've been getting them a lot lately, too. Most of the time I ignore them.

Such a great response I get a few of these a week and I usually ignore them especially since most are not something I want to be associated with anyways. Always think you should get at least something for your time.

YES!! I have been getting sooo many of these emails and at first I got excited …until I realized they wanted me to work for free and without any product. Seriously? No. I try to remain nice about it but I think it's a little crazy for someone to expect you to advertise for them for free for no reason and to use up a chunk of your time while you create a post….stupid.

I love your response! I have gotten several of these emails and I have just ignored them because they aren't doing anything for me…but maybe I need to respond with something like this!

UGH. I have been on the other end, working for a company who wants me to reach out to bloggers for a free review. My managers have been upset with me when I tell them, bloggers don't work for free. Then they make me do it anyway and of course…zero responses. But even if it's a gift card given by the company instead of of monetary compensation, I get a good response!

I was just thinking about this topic, minutes before I saw your post on it! Perfect timing! Do you ever include a request for products to do a review instead or in conjunction with monetary payment? Do you just switch that out (or add in) for the dollar amount or do you have another sample email for something like that? There are companies I would consider working with in exchange for some free swag (I don't have nearly as many pageviews as you so in some cases I think this would be a fair trade) so I was curious as to how other bloggers handled this.

I love this! I've started to get more and more emails that don't say at all what I could get from it, so I have 2 emails. 1 for when they don't do this ("this idea sounds right up my alley! could you send me more information?"), and 9/10 times they say that they might share my post on social media. the other is basically what you said.

This is a great idea! I have been seeing more and more of these emails come through my inbox and most the time I just ignore them (I know, bad blogger etiquette) but I guess I just didn't know how to say "no" or "really?? my time and my blog space for FREE?!" lol But this is so awesome. I made the mistake of doing one for "free" in return for social media exposure…by a very well known company…and they never held up their end of the deal. 🙁 So needless to say, I learned my lesson with that one.

Thanks for this post. I hate getting those emails and not knowing the proper way to respond. So I normally just ignore them. Whoops.

This is such a great response. I get so many of these emails, and I never know how to reply. Many times I just don't answer after initially thanking them and asking for the details. I didn't know this thing about the same PR person working for multiple companies though. It sounds like it is definitely best to respond professionally with a note like this one.

Yes! and i feel the same way – what's in it for me? i often ignore them but should write a response like this. just curious – how often do they respond and want to work with you and pay you?

I've gotten two of these emails this month. At first I was excited, then I realized that there was nothing in return. One was from a certain shave club, and they wanted me to talk about ways to save time and money and relate it to shaving. I thought that I would be compensated with a razor or two, so I agreed. Then she replied and just told me to have my post up. How am I supposed t talk about your product if I've never used your product?!?

I've just started getting these e-mails, and I'm always scared it's an email scam since they're just so generic! I love the idea of having a draft saved to just input numbers and the company name into, so efficient!

You response is so classy! I often don't respond because Im afraid my attitude will show through my words

This is fantastic, I've been wondering how to respond to those emails. As of right now, I've just been ignoring them but that feels unprofessional so I will definitely be stealing this template 😉

It's so clear that they just change out the name in a copy and paste format. I love when it says Hi BLOG NAME lol Like I have a real name too, which you would know if you spent more than 2 seconds actually looking at my blog!

I've been getting so many of these and I ALWAYS want to reply with a really rude response. Your response is great!

This is so useful and timely! I've been getting a ton of these lately.

I have received so many of these and never believed they were real since they didn't offer me anything. damn, I wish I thought of responding like that! At least now I know for the future, thanks! 🙂

YES! Thanks for writing this. I'm starting to get more and more of these emails and I find it so incredibly cheeky that these companies think it's acceptable to ask a blogger to promote their products and services for FREE. Really bold in my opinion, and a bit rude.

I'm the same way though. I always respond kindly because you never know when they may want to really work with you down the road and pay you for your time and efforts.

I've never included my stats though so that's a great suggestion.

V
Life+1

i just ignore them. i can barely churn out my own posts; why would i even entertain churning out a post for someone else??

So confused when I first got these. Like, where's the money?? And it's for weird stuff sometimes, like men's suits, which would not fit at all on my blog.

I get them all the time too. I usually just say 'here's my rates/advertising page, let me know if you're interested.' It's still really annoying.

"Let us know if you'd like us to send you some hi-res images for a post you might be working on" Ohhh thanks so much. I'm curious to hear how often they email you back after you throw out a price tag…

Add Your Comment

Follow

Follow Along on Instagram

Pin with me!



Refined Theme
X