How to be honest about sponsorships
"How can I maintain credibility and authenticity if I'm writing sponsored posts?"
As more brands are beginning to dive into social influence marketing, and sponsored posts are more prevalent across the board it is so important for bloggers and social influencers who want to maintain their audience. Here are my two cents, below. I'd love to hear your opinions! Bloggers, what do you think?
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Write longer posts
Integrate sponsored content into a larger story.Don't write posts that are too long, but long enough so the entire post isn't a sales pitch. A great example is this post by Tina on Carrots 'N' Cake. It is sponsored by Arnold Bread, but still has a fun story around it. This is much more authentic than if Tina wrote the whole post about her love for bread (actually, come to think of it, that might be a bit enticing as well. Any fellow bread-lovers out there?!) Still, the point is tell a story and the story can relate to the product, but doesn't have to be all about it.
Write more posts
This way not each post is sponsored.It will be less obvious that you write sponsored posts when people come to your blog if they see a sprinkling of different types of posts. (Note: sponsored posts are not a "bad" thing, but they do need to flow with the rest of your content!)
Ask a good friend to review your blog
Ask them to point out posts that seem likes sales pitches and brainstorm how you could enhance the next one.
Read like-minded sponsored blogs you respect
Follow their lead how do they position brands? Any best practices you can follow? You probably like these blogs because of like minded interests and the voice and tone of the author. How do they integrate brands and sponsored content into their posts?
Don't turn down good opportunities because you're worried about coming off poorly, it's true what they say practice makes perfect and you won't get better unless you try. If you mess up once , your audience won't abandon you I promise!!
Maintain your morals, voice and tone
Seriously, this sounds like a no-brainer, but don't take an opportunity just for the money if it isn't something you feel good about. One of my favorite stories is from Selfish Mom, who I met at Blog World in NY. She said she was offered a "life-changing amount of money" to write for a brand and didn't feel good about the company, so turned it down. This is very respectable and I encourage you to think twice if you're presented with questionable opportunities. It might be difficult in the short-term, but will pay off in the long run because you will maintain your audience.
Remember: Your audience is more important than any brand
Make this your mantra to keep you true to your writing style and quality content.
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Posted in Financial Services Post Date 05/23/2020