I’m sure anyone who has been blogging for any period of time has uttered blogging is weird. Or….maybe that’s just me.
But, its honestly weird.
You sit at home (or at work, or at a coffee shop) put some words into your browser, hit publish and then people read it. And sometimes they like it so they comment or share it and then it grows, and then more people read.
Sometimes, you’ll even get opportunities out of it, which is really strange.
I’m always pleasantly surprised that people think I’m cool enough to 1 – care about my opinion on things and 2 – want to send me things to hear about my opinion on them.
Except, sometimes we’re sent things that maybe we don’t like. Or, we’ll say yes to something that doesn’t really excite is and we can lose our voice and things can stop feeling authentic.
Why it’s Important to Blog Authentically
Having been a part of the blog world for a while (Cowgirl Runs is nearly 3, but I’ve actually been blogging since 2007) it seems there’s a natural progression to this:
- Start blog and excitedly post
- Gain followers
- Get first opportunity
- Get more opportunities and more followers
- Post about more opportunities
Through that, it can be really easy to lose your voice in the process.
Heck, you might even find yourself posting about something you don’t love.
Earlier this year I was sent a product to review. I applied for the campaign because it’s a brand I’d previously worked with and I enjoyed their products.
Unfortunately, I did not enjoy this product.
Like, at all.
There was absolutely no way I’d be able to post a positive review, so I was left with one of three choices.
- Post a negative review of the product to meet my obligations and receive payment.
- Lie and post a positive review of the product to meet my obligations and receive payment.
- Contact the person in charge of the campaign and opt out and forego payment.
Since I’ve enjoyed every other product from this particular company, I really didn’t want to go the route of option one. Posting a negative review really wasn’t up my alley.
And being untruthful?
Oh heck no.
Frankly, that’s just not my jam.
I’ve worked really hard to be truthful and only ever share products that I would spend my money on with you. If I won’t pay for it, then there’s absolutely no way I’d ever want you to spend your money on it.
I ultimately went with option three. And I felt good about my decision.
What I did see was other bloggers posting positive reviews about the product and that made me feel a bit icky inside.
Before I opted out, I had a number of friends also try the product because maybe it was something where it wasn’t for me, but other people enjoyed it. Five of the five people I asked to try it also disliked it.
Hmmm. Okay then.
Now, I never, ever, want to judge, or question another blogger, but I have to admit, I really did raise an eyebrow at those positive reviews.
My advice, no matter how big or small your blog may be, is to always make sure you’re being true to you when accepting and blogging about opportunities.
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Bloggers: how do you approach reviews on your blog?
Readers: what are your thoughts on reviews? Is reading a review from a blogger likely to sway you?
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