Many bloggers don’t realize that they can make money by doing these or if they do they don’t know how to go about negotiating the proper fee.
You have to ask for it.
It’s that simple.
You do need numbers to back it up but the threshold isn’t as high as you might think.
Blogging is like that old Herbal Essance commercial. You tell two friends, they tell two friends and so on and so on. Even if you don’t have traffic like The Bloggess or Dooce you still reach a lot of people who can spread you message by word of mouth.
It’s hard to place a monetary number to that word of mouth power but believe me, the companies who are asking you to write a post about their products know it is a powerful thing. If you are Tweeting or sharing that information on Facebook that just adds to your value.
Think of your blog as a billboard. Your blog is real estate, and your talent for writing is the location of that billboard. If your billboard is on a busy intersection with a stoplight it’s worth a lot more than one on a lesser traveled interstate. You wouldn’t let anyone just come along and put up an ad on that billboard without paying you some kind of fee and you certainly wouldn’t do it for a sample of the product they are trying to sell.
Many bloggers are happy to get a sample but consider this, the cost of that product is nothing to the company you are selling. The sample should never be the compensation for your real estate and your talent. When calculating your compensation from a company you need to consider a host of factors such as:
The time it takes to write the post
It might be easy to dash off a post when writing about your day to day activities but when writing copy for another company there is research that needs to be done and that takes time.
Traffic to your blog
If you have been blogging for a while you can be sure you have worked damn hard to get the traffic (and keep it) you have. If you are like most bloggers that can translate to many hours each day. Time is money, never give your time away for a sample.
Facebook and Twitter
Do you Tweet about the product and share it on Facebook? These are powerful tools and most companies want to know how many people you reach on Facebook and Twitter. Larger numbers of followers and friends can translate to higher fee. Start increasing those numbers in your spare time.
Companies know your value but they are in business to make money, they are going to offer the lowest amount possible to get their product promoted. Don’t be afraid to ask for fair compensation.