Let me first state that I’m aware this post might ruffle a few feathers; however, I’ve been noticing attitudes of entitlement come out more and more in the blogging world, so I thought I’d think out loud with my thoughts. (Erin also wrote a great post about the amount of work that goes into blogging that’s also worth a read.)
Lately I’ve been noticing more and more comments and attitudes about being owed something merely by virtue of being a blogger. Now, I’m not talking about situations where you have an agreement with a company – if you have an agreement and contract of course you’re entitled to compensation for the work you’ve performed. What I’ve seen is this idea of “well I’m a blogger so I should get _____ for free”.
Or, “well Blogger A received X, so I should get it to.”
Also, “I want to become a blogger so I can get free stuff” <– this one irritates me to no end.
Guys, that’s not how this works. It’s not how anything works.
In a professional environment, you don’t receive a raise/promotion/bonus merely because your coworker did. Those are merit based and are assessed based upon performance. And? Blogging is that way as well.
More and more companies are gaining experience working with influencers and they will read your blog, and scroll your Instagram feed. If you’re not a fit, you’re not a fit. At the end of the day, its the decision of the company (just like it’s the decision of your employer) whether or not they’d like establish a partnership with you.
In the same vein, bloggers (myself included) spend a lot of time building relationships with companies. A lot of times it requires sacrifices up front on our part in order to create and facilitate a longer term relationship with the company. So when I receive messages like “oh hey, can you pass along your contact for Company” a lot of times I won’t do it. Why? Because the names I pass along is a direct reflection of me and I’m quite careful in keeping my brand relationships happy.
That’s not to say I’m never going to help out a fellow blogger – the exact opposite is true! I believe there’s enough room on the internet for all the running blogs, fitness articles, etc. I believe we get further by lifting up and supporting one another, but support doesn’t mean handouts. To me it means engaging in conversations, sharing ideas, collaborating, and brain storming. If I’m afforded an opportunity where I can involve others, I absolutely make sure to include my friends, because I want them to succeed as well. The most successful bloggers I know are the ones who work hard and hustle, not the ones who sit back and wait for a company to “discover” them.
When blogging first took off, it didn’t take much to be successful, you really could sit back and wait, but today you have to work hard and create relevant and engaging content. Again, not dissimilar to in a work environment where you’re expected to, well, work.
I want to be completely transparent and state that I’ve absolutely had moments wherein another blogger had told me about an opportunity they have and I go, “aww man, that would be awesome” but I in no way begrudge them for being successful and receiving great opportunities because I truly believe when you work hard, your time will come
Finally, it’s prudent to remember that no one can steal an opportunity from you. Blogger A being successful does not mean you cannot be successful. We aren’t privy to all of the happenings behind the scenes, and sometimes success is just luck of the draw.