Dear companies and agencies,
After a series of unfortunate events, a post must be made to help enlighten those in the dark. Years of being a beauty bloggers in Singapore and Indonesia, 100% of the incident happens in Indonesia. What kind of incidents? Start from an agency that ask me to do copy-writing for them then suddenly mia (missing in action) after forcing me to an impromptu meeting to their 2,5 hours away office, rushing me with deadlines (always under 24 hours) and many more. All went away without any news moreover a payment.
Companies asking me to make posts, reviews, endorsing their products for payments ended up keep stalling on the agreed payment or like what happen above, when mia.
Agencies that kept asking for 'favors' to help their database with beauty bloggers I knew, which basically asking me to do their job without payment. Their request is always without shame, it's not just the link, but the request can go until page view, followers, hits, and other private data regarding the beauty bloggers which they are either too lazy to do research or paid without the need to work.
Don't get me wrong, I do heard complains about beauty bloggers from companies as well, I must admit, there are a few (small numbers) of beauty bloggers that loves products yet never review them or went mia, but hey, in my defense, choose the bloggers wisely, read their blog for goodness sake! If you see constant update, recent posts, and well, clearly good reputation everywhere, then collaborate with her (or him). If you don't see those signs, then don't!
Do your research well.
Me personally, I love reviewing products, going to an event and share about it all over my sns (social networking services, yessssss, many pr's or marketing officers in companies or agency doesn't even know what sns is). I do my job well and frankly some of the companies I've collaborate all these times and has been years appreciates what I'm doing and I'm appreciating them as well.
If there's an invitation I can't come, I'll reply the email letting them know, I hope companies and agencies do the same when I need their response, it's like a basic manner don't you think?!
Talking about basic manners, some of the people work in companies or agencies seems to be lacking of start from the email:
"Hey beauty bloggers,
We want to invite you to..................."
We do have name you know. Would you like a post made for you, "this brand has this product lah, it was held in this place". How do you feel when it's the other way around? Again, it's about getting to know the bloggers you are going to collaborate, we are all human being, correct?!
Regarding reviewing products, when beauty bloggers do a review, they are doing their job and despite what the review turns out (positive or negative) there's should be a sense of appreciation that the bloggers already used the product and review about it. If the result is good, then the companies may uses the review as a marketing tools and beneficial for the company.
If the review is negative (let says the blogger doesn't like the product), it can be as a feedback to the company, perhaps a communication should be done to look for things that might went wrong in the process, in the end, it's still beneficial for the company to have a feedback, there is no way a product can be 100% fool proof.
Now for the endorsement or advertorial, let's start from the definition shall we?!
An advertorial is an advertisement in the form of editorial content. The term "advertorial" is a blend of the words "advertisement" and "editorial
Endorsement (alternatively spelt "indorsement") may refer to:
- a testimonial, a written and/or spoken statement endorsing, promoting or advertising a product.
You may still google it up or look in a dictionary if you're not okay with wikipedia.
So, yes, clearly stated there's an 'advertising method', one support with products and/or payment, in return of something, in the terms of relationships with beauty bloggers, we do posts.
Posts that shares the products as followed by the sponsors. There are t&c's, obligations from both sides, and so on. Unfortunately, in most cases I see or experienced (in being a beauty blogger or handling beauty blogger management) it's not the beauty bloggers that doesn't do their responsibilities, it's the companies and/or agencies.
What should we do now as a beauty bloggers? Should we put a 50% down payment for all of our deals with the companies and agencies?
Now, another problem occurred.
Some irresponsible parties has start developing rumors about bloggers being a goody bag hunters, for me my respond would be.....seriously? How can a person have a problem in differentiate or distinguish between a goody bag hunter and a beauty blogger?! Again, do a quick background check. I believe we all connected to the internet right now, a quick google check should be a able to finish the job.
There are goody bag hunters and people who love to join quizzes or giveaways, some of them do blog, they do share their 'prizes' in the sns, but they are not beauty bloggers. Does beauty bloggers join giveaways? Sometime yes! I do love giveaways myself, joining one or holding one, but my main focus is still beauty blogging and my blog is mainly about reviewing, not about joining a giveaway, so again, read and you shall see. We are not so difficult to be understood or acknowledged.
As a beauty blogger before I received a product of accepting a collaboration, I do my homework by googling to your companies and agencies. I check and re-check everything I can before saying 'yes'. Is it because I have more time? Not really! I work 10-12 hours every day, I have a life, family, and other responsibilities like being an Event Organizer for beauty bloggers and running a management for beauty bloggers as well. I'm not a privileged person who has butlers and personal assistant, I do most of everything by myself, and I think, most of the beauty bloggers in Indonesia as well.
So please don't keep asking us for a meeting in your office when everything could be done online or when companies or agencies can simply get everything by reading our blog. Again it's all there, like an open portfolio. One company just contacted me asking where I live for a meeting, in the end they still wanted me to come to their location which is 2 hours away, for what?! Their excuse is no more then to 'check on me' for an endorsement that they don't want to pay. So to satisfied their unreasonable personal request to see me in person and putting me in difficult situation and demanding t&c's, I just have to decline, saying sorry, if they don't trust me, they shouldn't collaborate with me. Did they replied after that? Of course not. It feels like they are just playing around with beauty bloggers, whose the one stupid enough to do our demands for nothing.
Don't take us for granted and for agencies, we are NOT your commodities.
Am I talking to all companies and agencies? Nope, it's a very good thing that there are still a lot of good ones out there, the one that we do mutual respect and honor each others job.
I still collaborating with many brands and agencies so far, I'm very happy that a lot of them are still making efforts in making a relationship. Yes, beauty bloggers and companies should be like making relationship instead of 'business' only. It is best to know beauty bloggers personally and build a long term relationship, and beauty bloggers should do to, by doing so we know each other better and better and a trust can be establish, and it's all start by NOT being so demanding.
Even when it's 'business' only basic manners should still be there.
In the end is about treat others how you want to be treated, don't give us expired or almost expired products so you don't have to throw it to the trash bin yourself. Don't contact us in the last minute to come to an event without apologizing like we're some kind of unemployed idleness. Be aware of your own position, don't give us a serum to be reviewed within 7 days. It will ruin your own reputation as a representative of the brand.
Don't repeatedly emailed and contacted us through private messages and keep telling us to reply ASAP when you need 2 weeks to answer a simple question.
Don't call a blogger whose on their way to your event to hurry up when he/she clearly says they are stuck in traffic, be realistic.
Don't tests us by saying to do a trial review, read our blog for previous review.
Don't ask us to review dozens of products in a day, do you want real review or gibberish words?!
If you want a blogger to highlight ONLY the goodness of your products, please don't make us upset by being too controlling, people are happier and more positive when they are treated nicely and kindly. I'm not asking about kissing our
As most the beauty bloggers are girls, respect us when we do came to your event at night time and at areas that are far from our home, some of us still have to take public transportation.
Don't ask about our personal data and then when mia.
Don't ask for a full review when you gave us a 5 ml product in sachets.
Don't ask for a review when you only send me a press release via email, not even the real actual product.
Honor our agreement in the beginning of a collaboration, this goes for agencies too, even if your client suddenly changed the agreement, you should fight for us and stick to the signed agreement.
Last but not least, I know that you may hate your job or doing it because you don't have other choice but don't take it on us, we may love being a beauty blogger but we do have our personal life as well. There are things that aggravate us, you don't want us to take it on you nor your products right?!
Why am I saying this? So many times I heard excuses from agencies or representatives of a brand saying they are pushed by their tight schedule, their demanding bosses, etc, hence they are taking it on beauty bloggers, well, do you want us to do the same?
-This post is made for those companies and agencies that has failed to be more representative for themselves NOT for those awesome companies and agencies that has been doing a great job (and still collaborating with me ^___^ )-