“You can’t un-sellout.” Those are my words, they’re something I stood by for years. Would I sell my blogging soul for some free samples? Would I compromise my integrity for the sake of a few scant dollars thrown my way? Hell, no.
Then a few months ago, I joined a collective called SheBlogs. Together with other Canadian female bloggers, we are represented by the SheBlogs team to advertisers who can then choose to run a variety of ads or campaigns through us. As a blogger who has been doing this for free for more than ten years now, I thought it couldn’t hurt to try out their model. We get to choose which advertisers’ campaigns we would like to take part in when offered a campaign, and the major benefit (to me) is that there’s exactly no selling for me to do. They take care of it all. And I really liked the idea of having some approved ads on my site, to generate a bit of income here.
I’ll be honest, the money I’ve made thus far is little more than enough to cover my hosting costs. But that’s money I wasn’t making before, right? I don’t post about anything I don’t like or support, so it’s a good deal, right? Right?
Those are my words up there. Did I sell out?
This month, with three campaigns running, I’ve felt like I’ve lost direction here. On the one hand, this is my space to do with it whatever I want. But on the other, this space is where I come to write, or share ideas, and not necessarily try to convince you to buy a product. So have I sold out? I’m not really sure. I do know that my wee family appreciates the free samples we’re given, and the chance to give away fun stuff is great! So for now, I’m going to say that no, I have not. And hope that you feel the same.
If I wanted to write reviews exclusively, I’d start a review blog… but that isn’t really what I’d like to do, so I hope you all know that when I don’t support something, I don’t write about it. And if you’d like proof of that, well, I declined a kids’ movie review (which would’ve made me a fair bit of money, for what it required) simply because it wasn’t something I’d ever condone little kids watching. I promise my integrity is still intact. I’d never give a glowing review to something I wouldn’t spend hard-earned dollars on, and I’ll always disclose to you when I’ve been compensated for a post, despite my opinions always being honest. You can count on that.
But damn, it feels nice to earn a little for blogging.