A question I received from Dean in the comments of a previous post (oops, over a year ago – I’m late, don’t hate) was how to work with sponsors when they want to advertise their products or services through your travel blog. That’s a broad question but I’ll try my best to narrow down that gray area between blogger and advertiser when you’re not selling a direct ad.
“I’d welcome your suggestions about working with advertisers when it comes to running competitions and promotions of their products/services, eg, what’s in it for me, what to ask for etc. Thanks.” -Dean
Products, Products Everywhere
Blog long enough and you’re certain to get companies of all sorts asking you to take a look at or blatantly promote their products and services. Most of these offers come as promotional scatter-shot. There has to be a trade off whenever you work with some other entity or person on your travel blog. That could be monetary compensation or content but whatever it is as a blogger, you need to look at it from your side.
Too many (especially newer) bloggers worry too much about what the other side is getting in a deal, acting so scared to lose any potential offer they promote everything for nothing. Trust me, the other side is already concentrating on what they want to get out of a deal; you can’t meet anybody halfway if you’re running after them.
Know What Fits Your Site
Don’t even consider a product or service from an advertiser if you don’t think it’s useful or would be interesting to your readers. Companies approach you to promote their products for as little money as they can; don’t jump at every or many of the offers you get unless there is some clear benefit to your business. What you promote is a message about your blog and your online image, be discriminating.
Spread Out Effecticely
Many promoters want you to dedicate an entire blog post to their product or service. And, on rare occasions, something interesting enough comes along to warrant just that. (For example, when I did a Monster Inspiration headphones review.) On other occasions a product or service you’re given an offer to try may just be a good fit as part of a large blog post on a related topic.
Or as a free giveaway on Facebook or through your newsletter, something like I did with Swarovski Optik last month. Leverage the offers you receive and make them work for your blog naturally, so they don’t feel like a detour or distraction, but rather a natural expansion of your travel blog.