Okay, so this is a rather different blog post than my usual fashion and beauty articles. I know I don’t usually focus on lifestyle posts, as I don’t think people are that interested in them. However, I’ve been thinking about and preparing this one for quite a long time now.
Today I would like to discuss a somewhat controversial topic within the blogging industry. The subject matter I would like to delve into and pick your brains is – why you shouldn’t settle for less as a blogger!
So, what motivated me to write about this?!
Long story short, a quite well-known company approached me via email somewhere in late January or early February. I don’t quite remember the exact date anymore. Needless to say, I don’t think I even keep that email.
For the sake of the argument, let’s name this company X! I don’t think I should name and shame anybody from the company because a) I’ll just cause more drama than it’s needed, b) I don’t want to give them even more attention, and c) it doesn’t look good to other potential companies that want to work with me!
Going back to that initial email I received from X’s PR team, it was a huge opportunity. Basically, their PR wanted to include me in an article about bloggers you should follow in 2019. I remember when I read that email that I gasped and screamed with excitement.
I mean, of course, I will! Who wouldn’t?!
As a fairly new blogger, this was a great opportunity! It was like Vogue posting your street style picture from fashion week! I was also promised that the article would be shared on all of their social media accounts. So, this was a huge, huge opportunity!
Shop The Post:
Mango Printed Satin Dress | Black Over-The-Knee Boots (similar here) | Black Leather Belt (similar here)
In exchange for this article, I only needed to do 3 things: send them a little bit of info about me, a picture and a backlink to the article in my next blog post.
I had a very short deadline – around 24 hours to send company X everything they needed. So, I did exactly what they wanted me to do! I wrote the description with a link to my blog and attached the picture. X’s PR told me that the article would be up on either the following Friday or Monday. Great! But not so great…
What actually happened, you ask?
Well, let me tell you!
I waited around two weeks before I saw the article on their website. I wasn’t even going to notice it if I didn’t scroll way down. Why? Well, company X decided to push their blog post after many other blog posts! So, instead of seeing their blog posts sorted by date, you were just seeing random ones!
‘Okay’, I thought, ‘no biggie, it’s still some very good exposure!’
But I was wrong!
Not only did they not do a blast email about the article, but they also didn’t share it anywhere! Yep, I received absolutely nothing from it. What’s worse, unlike all of the other bloggers that were mentioned in that post, I didn’t have a picture and a link to my Instagram or blog!
Naturally, I emailed X’s PR straight away and politely asked them to include a picture alongside links! I received absolutely no answer from them. However, I did keep an eye on the article. Eventually, there was a link to my Instagram, how sweet of them… Still, I didn’t get any sort of exposure!
Thus, I decided not to keep my part of the deal. Company X didn’t keep their promise, so why should I?!
Basically, they wanted me to include a backlink to their website for nothing!
I was very frustrated at the time but within a month or so I almost forgot about company X. Well, I say almost, because 2 months later X’s PR had the nerve to reply to my previous email. She apologised and told me that the picture is now up. You see, they had ‘technical difficulties’! But now everything was OK and she asked me to backlink their article.
Of course, I didn’t reply! I mean, the nerve she had! Contacting me two months later to ask me for a backlink for free?!
I was so frustrated but I let it go… until… I received another email two days later asking me the same thing! Ladies and gentleman, I honestly wanted to smash my laptop…
Once again, I didn’t reply!
However, it made me think about how most companies take advantage of small bloggers. So, I thought of writing this very long post to tell you and any other bloggers out there to never settle for less!
#1 You’re Lessening Your Self-Worth
Self-worth is defined by Merriam-Webster as: “a feeling that you are a good person who deserves to be treated with respect”! Moreover, self-worth is all about the sense of one’s value or worth as a person!
How are you supposed to practice self-worth if you settle for less?
I don’t know about you, but up until this post, I seriously struggled with defining myself as a blogger. I despised the thought that if someone asked me what I do for a living, I would have to answer that I’m a blogger!
Why did I think that?!
Self-worth is all about the sense of one’s value or worth as a person!
I didn’t even realise that by thinking like this I was seriously harming my self-worth. Actually, I was lessening it!
If I had kept my promise to company X, I was going to cement that feeling of unworthiness as a blogger. But I didn’t!
I didn’t want to settle for less. And neither should you!
It doesn’t matter if you’re a small or a well-known blogger, you should never settle for less. Value and respect yourself. Only then you’ll truly practice good self-worth! Only then we’ll start to appreciate our own feelings, thoughts, desires and values.
#2 People Will Take You For Granted
If you settle for less, eventually, people will take you for granted! That doesn’t necessarily mean that people are mean or want to purposely do that. Unfortunately, that’s the nature of the beast!
Imagine I had done what company X wanted to me do. That I had included a backlink to their article in my next blog post, even though I didn’t get any of the promised exposure. Imagine that I had settled for less.
What do you think it would have happened?
Well, I’m almost certain that company X was going to contact me again. Maybe after a couple of weeks or months, either way, they were going to contact me.
What do you think they were going to ask me?
Like most of the PR’s out there, they were probably going to offer me a free product in exchange for a blog post and another backlink. I am pretty certain they weren’t even going to ask me how much I would charge for a written product review on my blog.
Because they’d already know that I’ve once settled for less. Actually, in this case, for absolutely nothing! So, why would they even think that I would charge them anything? They would have taken me for granted…
That’s why you should never settle for less! Eventually, people will always take you for granted!
#3 You’ll Lower Your Chances Of Success
If you’re a blogger who constantly settles for less, how are you supposed to succeed in the blogging industry?
Imagine you always accept the company’s T&C’s. You backlink to them in the hopes of even the slightest chance of exposure. Moreover, you always accept the free products in exchange for a written review. You always accept the bare minimum!
How exactly do you think you’re going to succeed?!
Of course, there are always exceptions. You might be one of the few bloggers out there that will succeed no matter what the odds are. However, a far more common scenario is that PRs will just take advantage of you.
In their eyes, you’ll just be a quick, easy and cheap backlink generator.
They will always treat you as a small and unworthy blogger. As sad as it may sound, in their eyes, you’ll just be a quick, easy and cheap backlink generator.
And just like that, you’ve already lowered your chances of success!
#4 Your Motivation Will Change For The Worse
Another big no-no as to why you shouldn’t settle for less is your motivation!
I promise you, once you start settling for less, your motivation will fade. Over time, it will change for the worse. I am willing to even bet on it!
No human being out there wants to work or do something for free. Sure, recall why you’ve started a blog. It was something that was bringing you joy. You wanted to share your thoughts, desires, fashion and lifestyle tips.
However, after a few months, you’ll eventually realise that you could actually make money from your so-called hobby. Then, you’ll regret the moment when you’d settled for less.
Most bloggers, if not all, will always seek some sort of incentive for their work. Be it money or exposure, they will want to receive something. You can’t always give without expecting nothing in return.
If you do that, you’ll be left with absolutely no motivation. And where there’s no motivation, there’s no desire to write. Ultimately, that will have repercussions on your writing. Your readers will undoubtedly notice it and you might even lose them!
With this, my friends, I’m putting an end to this long blog post. Let these 4 reasons be a reminder of why you shouldn’t settle for less as a blogger!
Would you settle for less?
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YvonneAugust 29, 2019
Now, that’s what I call taking advantage! How awful! Sorry about that! Thanks for sharing so that we can all be a bit more careful! Love your photos and the dress is lovely!
Mariya ZafirovaAugust 29, 2019
Thank you for reading Yvonne!
ChloeAugust 29, 2019
I think a lot of brands see smaller bloggers and assume we don’t know how the whole process works and that we will create content for next to nothing just due to the company name. That’s so untrue, and it’s true that smaller bloggers really need to know their worth!
Chloe X http://www.chloelxuise.com/
Mariya ZafirovaAugust 29, 2019
Absolutely agree with you!
EllieAugust 30, 2019
YESSSS LOVE THIS POST! I think it can be so easy to undersell yourself but we work so damn hard, we deserve to not settle for less
Mariya ZafirovaAugust 30, 2019
Absolutely Ellie! I’m so glad you read and liked the post! x
Georgiana QuaintAugust 31, 2019
This was an interesting read!
I personally keep all “business proposals” in a folder in my email, so I can go back to them in case I needed that in the future.
I once got a very “lucrative” opportunity too! It was one of those cheap Chinese shops that you see reviewed all over youtube and blogs, They offered me some free clothes in exchange for outfit posts. And added PS: we own the rights to the photos! :D:D:D I am still laughing. Maybe they should hire a photographer and models if they want photos for their shop.
Mariya ZafirovaAugust 31, 2019
Omg… the nerve some people have… honestly! 😀