The wonderings, ponderings and other 'ings' of me. Lifestyle, review, news and opinion posts. Chic with a hint of sarcasm... hopefully!

Thursday 4 January 2018

Is it ok to upset brands?

As a dedicated blogger, providing consistent content and good images* I eventually attracted the attention of some brands and it’s at this point I had my first blogger dilemma.  These companies asked for my opinion and I SO wanted to please them, but on occasion the item I was reviewing wasn’t as good as they had described. 

I’ve been fortunate enough to work with a number of brands over the past few years - some you may not have heard of, others you absolutely will know about. Many understand exactly what they are getting into when they hire bloggers accepting they are opening themselves up to a social dialogue about their product. If these brands handle any conversations that occur with honesty and humour they generally come out well. However I’ve noticed some have a certain ‘expectation’ about what the reviews we provide should consist of. So here's a little unsolicited advice…

We are not marketers for your company.  
Our readers want to know the truth as we see it. That means 'our cross my heart and hope to die' God’s honest opinion, if that opinion isn’t 100% favourable well tough! You wanted sweetness and free publicity? Then you should have hired a marketing team and paid them a fair wage while you’re at it.

Rant alert: I was recently made aware a certain well-known brand’s PR person was annoyed at a post I wrote as it mentioned an issue I’d had with the product. I found this to be particularly unprofessional especially as they didn't see fit to mention their problem to me personally.  If they had bothered to read my previous reviews they would have seen I don’t exactly shy away from the odd controversial remark and saying a product wasn't as I'd expected isn't even that risqué! It’s just the truth.

This blog is (hopefully) choc-a-block full of tongue-in-cheek quips and balanced reviews, meaning I chat about the good, the bad and the ugly. I will hardly ever write one of those ‘it was super fun-everything was perfect-you’ll all definitely love it’ sugary sweet posts as I don't see many things that way. I will always look for the good in what I'm reviewing, whether or not I’ve been paid or supplemented for my opinion, but I'll look for what could be improved as well. And I won’t lie just to make the PR team happy**.  

Trust is difficult to earn back once it’s gone. 
There’s one blogger that comes to mind I no longer take advice from as they never have a less than glowing word to say about ANYTHING.  I understand the desire to speak positively and dealing with the backlash that can occur if someone isn’t happy about what has been written can be hard. But personally I find it insulting if there isn’t any balance at all in a post. If you can’t 'fess up to an event or product being a bit shit on occasion I no longer believe you when you say how amazing it all was. 

Honesty is my go to form for writing,  And yes I do know that doesn’t gives me free rein to spew ignorant speech or purposefully cause pain with my words, anyone that uses a platform like this to further bigoted values IS a massive dill-hole***!

I’m also up for debate as believe it or not I have been known to get things wrong… on occasion. So go ahead and tell me what you think about what I think, heck if you feel strongly enough you might even change my mind on whatever it is we're discussing. 

In case you haven’t gathered it yet I’m a little outspoken and my opinion reflects that because that’s all blogs are, one person’s opinion. The bloggers I know are all dedicated to telling their own story and I'm lucky and excited to be doing the same.  We may only be a micro influencers but aren't we the ones you trust to tell you what's really going on? 

* even if I do say so myself!
** It's also worth mentioning if I've been sponsored or paid to review a product I say this up front not at the end of a 600 word endorsement.
*** FACT!

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