Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Ask LLYMLRS #5: Paid to Blog

"If you have any questions you would like me to answer in detail, Please email me on LLYMLRS@googlemail.com, And I will try and answer it in as much depth as I can. Ask me about anything you want to know about, It could be art, fashion, beauty, blogging or anything you can think of! For quick/easy questions feel free to just ask me on tweet me!"

"Would you accept money for posting about a certain product or brand? How do you feel about bloggers who are paid?"



This isnt really a question, but really just some thoughts on some of the things I've been considering blogwise recently. As you probably all know, this blog has a huge amount of traffic, Im averaging about 250,000 (yup quarter of a million! eep!) hits a month, and I've really been considering how I could and should try and further my blog in terms of PR, and I decided to do a Ask LLYMLRS on everyone least favourite topic in blogging, Being paid.

I know making money off blogs is quite a controversial issue right now, From people doing sponsored posts, advertisements, getting free stuff and "selling out". Im going to be honest now and say, I earn about £15 a month off my blog and Youtube combined. So much for being a "big" blogger hey! This is through my own choice though, I do have a few videos in the Youtube Revenue Share program, but Im not a partner, I also have one sponsor, and one Google based advert which literally earns pennies! I very rarely accept free items when Im offered them, and also am very picky when it comes to choosing who sponsors the blog!

I decline probably around 90% of the PR related things Im offered and am very conscious of the way you guys feel about me accepting them. In some ways I feel like I'll be selling out. My blog is about me, what I do and what I wear. I dont want you guys to think I'm shoving brands down your throat. But then in the same way, What I wear is an advertisement, Remember when I posted this post, that heart print vest sold out on the website the following day (It did go down in the sale though and there was loads in my local New Look!), Now Im not saying I'm wholly responsible for that, but could the fact that I linked to where I got it from, It could be a contributing factor into why it did? By posting outfit posts featuring the different brands, Im being an advert, just the only difference is I'm not getting paid to do it!



As for my feelings on blogs getting free items, sponsored posts or getting paid, I personally am not bothered by them, Alot of the time they are helpful and informative and make me aware of new things. Especially new things on market I'd not heard or tried before. I do feel alot of bloggers abuse this though, with not being open and giving a full disclaimer of things they are being paid to do. I've seen far too many bloggers and youtubers morph into money hungry walking advertisements. Personally don't push my sponsorship program, I know alot of blogs do a monthly post "calling for sponsors" post! But I haven't really made a big deal about mine. I dont think its wrong for blogs to do that either, personally I think its a smart move!

If I do choose to accept money for posts, and Im not saying that I will be doing them, Im just looking for opinions. I will be my usual picky self and only choose relevant things that I feel would benefit you guys as much as it would me! I am going to make it clear with any brands that I will give my honest and unbiased view on anything Im sent and regardless of any "compensation" I recieve for posting about them. Also just to clarify I wont be doing a sponsored post every week or anything like that, It will just be the occasional thing, and I'm hoping that most of the time I can intergrate them with the blog rather having set posts that are 100% sponsors!

In an ideal world I'd love to live off my blog, To be honest who wouldnt, Spending a few hours typing a post up and getting money for doing something that you love and feel passionate about. Not having to work a crummy 9-5 job just to get by. I know its a unrealistic view, but I'm sure most of us would love to love to live the sweet life if we could! Trust me guys Im not going to be turning into Elle and Blair and blurring the lines between paid and "compensated". Im 100% honest with everything I do or say on this blog. So even if there are "sponsored posts" or me with more freebies, I'll still be my usual honest self.

Id love to know your opinions on things like this, I know its a bit hushhush in the community, but its something Id like to know more about. Am I being smart choosing to accept them or am I making myself look stupid by giving into advertisers. More importantly am I abusing my followers? Would you do sponsored post or adverts? Even if your not a blogger what are your feelings on those who do sponsored posts, do you see as them as being greedy and money hungry, abusing their followers for their own personal gain? Would be interesting to know everyone opinions on this!

109 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  2. I don't think it's a problem unless it becomes your main motivation for blogging! I mean, you work hard on your blog, why shouldn't you be rewarded for it!?

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  3. I was thinking about similar issues the other day with relation to giveaways. I really don't mind sponsored posts on most blogs if the products or clothes involved fit in with the blog and seem like something the blogger would buy or wear anyway. I've had a couple of emails offering me free stuff to wear in outfit posts that I've ignored because they're so absolutely not me (think flowery hair accessories) and I feel like it would be ridiculous and too obviously out of character. I've seen items featured on some other blogs that don't make any sense at all and it's obvious they're sponsored, even if the blogger hasn't said so, and too much of this kind of thing might make me unfollow eventually. However, if I was offered something that was to my taste, I wouldn't have an issue accepting. I think you should take advantage of the offers you get, as long as it's stuff you actually like anyway! x

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  4. i find it a bit cheeky when people do too many sponsored posts, it feels like it's not really you talking, but the company that you're trying to help. i don't know, if it's subtle it's not too bad i guess x

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  5. I think this is a great thing to address. I feel like if you are sponsored by a place you love, then that's great. Just don't ever forget who you are :)

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  6. i think you're point of view on the whole issue is right on target. Only accept compensation or gifts if it may be something you wanted to blog about anyway. I dont see a problem with sponsored posts, but the way you would integrate it sounds even better. why not get paid for all your hard work! the idea of living off my blog is a dream! =)

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  7. i agree, freelance blogging would be an amazing job but if it's only for the money and there is no passion about it, it's kind of bad (: even if i did get sent a beauty cream i wouldn't be like OMG DIZ IZ SO AMAZING despite the fact it would break me out.(never happened hehe, just an example:D) as long as the opinion is honest i think it's acceptable, but there's a line between honest opinion and selling :) xxx

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  8. It is a funny one, isn't it? Don't get me wrong, like you (well, about 1-2% of the size of you!), I'd love to be able to make my blog into something 'workable' in the sense of it being writing I can use to part fund a wage.

    However, some blogs I look at and just recoil in horror becase of all the irrelevant Google ads and random affiliate/sponsorship stuff. I think, in order to monetise it effectively, you do have to be very careful and picky as to what you accept, considering what you blog about and what you like, think your followers will actually like and what blends in with the look of the blog.
    Re freebies, I think fair enough but the transparency has to be there for definite. If a blog becomes too salesy, it becomes one big ad and that's embarrassing and turn off.

    Good luck - if anyone's in a position to make something like this work, it's surely you.

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  9. Good luck, I say go for it as long as you choose sponsors who are in line with your own viewpoint.

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  10. I think you should go for it! You're obviously only going to accept sponsors whose products you would wear/actually like, and I don't think you're the type of person to shove it down your readers' throats every day!

    And, you've got to think you're a student as well as a blogger, so a bit of extra money will always be welcome :p Bearing in mind you do buy a lot of new clothes to show us in your posts, earning some extra cash to fund it will probs be a good idea too.

    http://pookieloves.blogspot.com

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  11. I agree with Emma Jade. You put in so much effort with your blog - having so many followers and views proves this! I'm sure if anyoneeee had the same opportunity they'd go for it! Just as long as posts are balanced between your own posts and the sponsered ones - so that you don't lose 'who you are' as a blogger (:

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  12. i dont think it affects you as a blogger at all because at the end of the day you put a lot of effort/time into this blog and so why shouldn't you be rewarded slightly??

    unless ofc you decided to do these posts every day.. but youve already said that you wouldn't so i really dont see a problem in it!

    x x x

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  13. I think that as long as you believe in the product and would buy it anyway theres no problem! Until you start taking things and saying they're awesome when they're not I dont think anyone has a right to complain xx

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  14. high respect for this :D

    because the items you do accept are classy and you only seem to breeze about the product
    all of which I probably would buy anyway


    annd a lovelly blog :D

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  15. You clearly work very hard on your blog so I think you should accept the freebies and privileges that come with it?

    Go Lily!


    enter my giveaway on my blog! :)
    http://www.lydia--lee.blogspot.com

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  16. Absosuley loved this post Lily!

    I think anyone given the chance would make money from their blog, if I had the chance im sure I would jump at it!
    You have such a following, and have so much respect in the blogging world that I don’t think anyone would look down at you accepting advertising. If they do they clearly know nothing and are jealous. I would go for it, it’s your blog and like you said, you should take advantage of being a walking advertisement.

    I deffo wouldn’t say you were selling out, you would be making money off something you love.
    So what’s wrong with that? It’s a job as well as a hobby xo

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  17. Definitely do it - it's a smart move, you're still doing something you love and getting paid for it! I mean, you're a student and I'm sure you know students need as much dosh as they can get their mitts on! I'm glad you're being honest about it because it is for some reason quite a taboo subject! I say go for it!! We trust you to still be yourself and have your own opinions - might as well get paid for it!

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  18. I think that providing it's in keeping with your style and it doesn't take over your blog it's fine. No one would think less of you for taking a few frocks/necklaces that were offered to you! I really like that you're so honest and sincere about it, but I think you worry too much! As long as it's still Lily talking, we'll still be reading ;)

    Penny x

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  19. Ooh great post!
    I can't wait to see the discussion that unfolds... I have never done a sponsored post, and would never consider doing one unless it was something I feel would genuinely be of value to my readers.
    I have the same attitude to sponsorship, whether it's monthly ad payment or freebies. I have turned down free hotel accommodation, getting a new pair of shoes a month (from a site that sold Vivienne Westwood x Melissa boots, creepers AND DM's!) free mobile phones... the list goes on! It has to be something I'm comfortable with (the shoe people wanted me to post about their site EVERY WEEK) and something I think my readers would care about (or somewhere they would shop). I would never want people to think I'd blogged about something just to get a freebie. I've been trying for 3 years to get people to read my bloody blog, I'm in no hurry to alienate the readers now I finally have them!
    On a slightly related note, I fricking hate bloggers freebie wangling on Twitter! It is SO blatant. When I did that week of giveaways, the amount of people that would comment me, trying to wangle freebies from the brands but masquerading it as a compliment... ie. 'Gem your giveaway is amazing, luv ya. I NEED some @Tabio socks in my life, they're TO DIE FOR!1!1!!!!' Is the '@' really necessary there? Subsequently many bloggers have posted about Tabio since then, after being sent a load of freebies. And I didn't receive so much as a free sock from Tabio! Despite how much awareness I raised for them. That's not the issue anyway, I did the giveaway for my readers and people have profited from that for themselves. I don't really care about the freebie wangling as such, but it's when people masquerade it as compliments! '@llymlrs Lily, your @Motelrocks dresses were amazing! WISH I had them'. I do actually, but I'm not going to go about it like that! I'd rather wait to be found by a brand, y'know?
    OMG essay.
    Anyway Lilz, as long as you're keeping your readers in mind with every decision, you won't go wrong. I've found out about some really cool new brands through other blog's advertising and freebie posts so it does benefit us if it's the right product!
    <3

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  20. you are an advert - that asda coat sold out online when you posted it! :)
    do whatever you feel you want to, and us, as followers will support you in whatever you decide :)

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  21. finally someone who is honest about what they earn from blogger/youtube! thannkyou for this post Lily!xxx

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  23. I think its Ok if you are able to maintain what your blog is about and if you personally, would use/buy that product if it wasn't sponsored.
    I think it would be a good move for your blog if you stay true to yourself :).

    http://teacupsandbuttondrops.blogspot.com

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  24. I think it's fine to do a few sponsored posts as long as it fits in with the theme of your blog which i'm sure you would do :) I was recently offered £40 to do a sponsored post but it had nothing to do with my blog and even though it was tempting for the money I didn't want to post about things that didn't interest me. I don't mind seeing sponsored posts as long as they're honest and there aren't a million other bloggers posting about the same thing :)
    It's really nice to see a blogger being really honest about this and I think it's fine for you to do a few sponsored posts here and there
    xxx

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  25. Firstly....loving the Ask LLYMLRS series!

    You really are a walking advert, you're so influential in the fashion blogging world and as long as your posts stay honest to your thoughts then I don't care whether you earn/get kickbacks from it or not! LLYMLRS is almost a brand in itself so you deserve to get back from it I say!

    T x

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  26. I have no problem with bloggers accepting sponsors or products for free and reviewing them. I think it's a great way to earn money doing something you love :)

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  27. Really well written post! As a blogger myself, I think it's fine to accept free products or write sponsored post IF AND ONLY IF that product is something you usually use or like you mentioned, it's your style. But that doesn't mean you should accept everything that's shoved to your face. I have stop reading a few blogs because they became to commercialized and all they ever blog about is sponsored products.

    You should definitely go ahead with sponsored post if that product really suits you or is something you really like but make a clear disclosure without trying to deceive your followers deliberately :)

    There's nothing wrong with trying to make extra money through something you enjoy doing. As long as you don't become the next fowler sisters.

    Xoxo
    Adeline
    www.through-beauty-eyes.blogspot.com

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  28. Hummm well i don't really care if the person is beeing paid to blog and only talk about good things about a product. By the of the day, is up to me if I want to buy that thing or not, and 100% of the time I don't, cause I dont have the money for it HAHA. It's like makeup gurus on Youtube, they rave about a certain product, and it would be stupid of me to just completly believe in her/him and go buy the product from the internet, whitout having a bit of a tester on myself, and then getting the product and be completly crap.

    xoxox

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  29. I find that it's really painfully obvious when you see people who just accept 'everything' because it just looks wrong. I also hate it (mostly on beauty blogs) when the person reviewing their freebies likes absolutely everything just so that they can get more free stuff! I say if something fits in with your style and you would probably buy it anyway, then I don't see any problems with that at all. It's the bloggers who are blatant walking adverts that look naff IMO.x

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  30. i don't think there's anything wrong with you earning money off of your blog as long as your blog stays the same! (unless they're pop ups ;) )

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  31. I agree with I think being sponsored is nice if you don't loose yourself just to gain money ^^

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  32. Ooh, interesting post! I totally agree with what everyone else is saying - as long as it's something you like and would blog about anyway then go for it! I'm not a massive fan of sponsored posts but that's mainly because they often have nothing to do with the blog, and the posts don't even sound like the blogger writes!

    Bloggers work really hard on their blogs and I see no reason why they shouldn't get something back, as long as it's in keeping and not every single post either!

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  33. I think it's fair to say most bloggers would love the chance to get paid to do what they love! The fact that you've taken the time to be upfront with your readers and put the debate out there shows that you have no intention of 'selling out'.
    If you accept any offer and don't feel comfortable down the line, then at least you've given it a shot and made the most of every opportunity?
    If the product is something you'd happily read about on another blog and you can control the content you put out there, then you should go for it!
    Good Luck :) x

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  34. i dont think theres any problem with advertising and getting paid, as long as your 100% honest which i know you would be. i know that if i was a successful blogger i would definitely want to be get paid and as ling as you stay true to yourself, i dont think it will put of readers xxx

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  35. I don't have a problem with it really, the only time it gets on my nerves is when it seems to be all they post about.

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  36. i have to agree with some of (i say some because i didnt read all the comments) the ladies, just dont loose you and you should be fine, i say go for it! : )

    - Shell



    http://tomberamoureuxde.blogspot.com/

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  37. I don't think it's a problem to accept freebies every now and then, but I wouldn't accept everything and anything that got offered to us (not that it happens a lot!) and certainly would never write about something I didn't like just because it was free. A blog should be your own really and I don't think I'd like to read a blog where every single post is centered around something a blogger received from a company.
    I also don't think it's a problem to make money from a blog, so long as it doesn't affect your blog too much.. like endless adverts etc
    Interesting post though!

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  38. lovely ideas thanks for sharing!!
    C:
    http://moneygonefor.blogspot.com/

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  39. I think blogging is a time-consuming thing and you put a lot of effort in it. Some bloggers spend hours on taking fotos, writing articles etc. so why dont make money out of it. i dont think theres anything wrong about it aslong as you stay impartial

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  40. Firstly - what an amazing post. Love that you have tackled a subject that's a bit of a taboo.

    I think sponsored posts and the inclusion of gifted items is fine, so long as it's in line with your personal tastes because, after all, it's your opinion and style that your vast amount of followers are interested in.

    I'd say go for it, but keep being picky and if you think something's rubbish either give us your honest opinion or don't do the post. But please never do one of those 'looking for sponsors' posts Lily, you're better than that dear :)

    Good luck, whatever you decide.

    Sally x

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  41. I think its a really smart move. You put so much effort into this blog and in return you've gained a dedicated readership. You could make a lot of money here. If you're offered money at work you don't turn it down so it would be silly to turn down the odd sponsored post.

    As long as you remain honest and you don't include some heavy advertising in every single post you do, why the heck not? Go for it Lily :)

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  42. Personally, I don't find anything wrong with it either, unless a blogger abuses this 'privilledge'.

    It's pretty obvious when a blogger starts a blog JUST for the freebies - and that annoys the hell out of me.

    I wouldn't have a problem with you doing anything like that, as long as it doesn't effect your style, and your morals, if you get me? Do what YOU think's right, if people start 'hating' on you for that, then fuck me they really need to find something more interesting to obsess over!

    When I first started blogging, it was just a hobbie - and still is - i had no idea you could get paid to do it and things like that!

    p.s. i love it when you do posts about topical subjects. They're always really interesting.
    http://yourstalkerslittlesister.blogspot.com/
    x

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  43. I think there are different ways to monetize your blog which are slightly more tasteful - blogs like Jac Vanek's have allowed her to launch a business off of it with those bracelets and t-shirts. Something like that - actually making your blog a business is (IMO) a better way to make money out of it rather than having annoying adverts everywhere.

    As for having sponsored etsy stores or something - they can be quite cool and you can discover something new off of them.

    I agree with you wholeheartedly - whatever you say you're loving is advertisement and this is a great post - go you for tackling such a controversial issue!

    xxxZ

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  44. Interesting post. I discussed the same topic in my Blog Issue post on promotion here - http://littlebirdfashion.blogspot.com/2010/08/blog-issue-promotion.html.

    I think it really comes down to personal preference. I don't do sponsored posts - I don't want to be paid to write a review about a product, because the pressure to make it a positive review would be unbearable. I accept freebies when I think they're relevant and in keeping with my style, and I have a few advertising spots, but I don't feel the need to do more than that.

    However, I think if you want to turn blogging into a career (and with the volume of visits you get, you could - easily!), you need to think of it as a business. Which is when it gets really hard to separate the business side from the personal side.

    A few months ago I did a stint of freelance social media consultation and writing for a client. They wanted me to use my large Twitter following to promote their brand, but I refused. I'm too personally attached to use my Twitter profile in that way. My Twitter 'family' are too precious (loser!) to pimp out, so I don't go there. Maybe think of it in those terms, and work out where your limit is? xx

    PS - I TOTALLY agree with Gem. I can see straight through Twitter whoring for freebies. So uncouth!

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  45. I think the main thing is are you willing to keep your integrity and not sell your soul. If you do a post on a product and good or bad tell the truth about it then it's up to you're readers to decide wether to buy or not. All you do is the information on it and what you think about it, especially if you try it out [thus the point in samples]!

    http://themessenger-bag.blogspot.com

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  46. I don't mind it however, I do get incredibly annoyed when every blogger I follow has blogged about exactly the same product all within 24 hours of each other... most recent of which was the launch of the new Britney Spears perfume. It makes for very dull reading when you've heard every descriptive word imaginable just for a perfume!

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  47. Thanks for being honest with us Lily. Personally, I think 'Why not?' You would be able to earn a bit whilst doing something you love (hopefully you love blogging lol)...so, I say go for it! As long as you are true to yourself *wipe a tear haha* xxxx

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  48. I really hate the idea for some reason? I think because I have only seen it done in a tacky and hideous way. blogs I used to love are now overrun with fake, crap reviews praising products i wouldnt touch with a bargepole and have adverts all over them. it becomes so you can't tell the blog posts from the adverts and the content is just false and boring.
    I guess you kind of have to decide which way you want your blog to go? You are in a position where loads of people listen to what you say - I love your blog because it feels real - sure you are hitting millions of hits but you still feel like a normal girl who wears things I could see myself in or buying. I haven't seen advertising or product reviews done in a subtle, tasteful way - it normally ends up being so obvious and 'other' to the previous blog style that I hate it- but that doesn't mean it cant be done!

    xxx

    www.anygirlfriday.com

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  49. I turn down about 90% of the things that I get offered too. I think it's really off putting when bloggers post about things that don't fit in with the aesthetic of their blogs at all! However, I don't think for a second that you would ever do that so I say go for it! If you can make a bit of money out of blogging, grab it with both hands!

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  50. After reading your post and all those comments, I feel like there is nothing left I can say about this that hasnt already been said! Thank you for being honest and posting about this though, I do feel like it can be a bit 'hush hush' at times so it is interesting to see what everyone thinks about it! at the end of the day, you invest so much time in your blog lily and I think if you can make a bit of money back from it then there is no problem with that at all!

    As Ola has mentioned above, as long as you are true to yourself then whats the problem?! youre always gonna get haters and jealous people who might give you shit here and there... but at the end of the day this is your blog, you should be able to do and say what you like and if people dont like it then they dont need to read it xx

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  51. I think you've got the balance right really. One particular blogger I follow literally shoves the link of the websites she buys her stuff from. I'd rather her go into more depth about what she likes about the item etc, rather than repeating many many times, "visit [insert site] now!"
    However, her blog has hundreds of followers and evidently she does well!

    I think the plain advertising of websites makes a blog much less personal though.

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  52. 'If you're good at something.. NEVER do it for free'

    I think if a company approaches you and you consider their products worth promoting because you like it and would buy it to use yourself - then why not benefit from receiving items for free or getting paid to promote it?

    Only if they try to make you blog every day/week/month about it or excessively advertise their products will you lose your followers support.

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  53. Personally, i think it's a smart move. I think t's its a product you genuinely would use or buy anyway, why not promote it and be rewarded?

    It will become false once you start advertising things that you aren't in favout on - and with so much traffic and followers, they will know what woul be out of place!

    Go for it, you obviously have invested a lot of time in your blog, why not be awarded for it? :)

    www.waitletmygrabmycoat.blogspot.com

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  54. For the most part I don't see a problem with bloggers getting paid, it's when they stop doing anything for themselves and soley rely on PR sponsors or freebies just to get followers through contests etc. Whether you have been sponsored or not, within the past 3 months ish that i've been following, it's never been rammed down my throat which is what's refreshing about your blog.

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  55. Like you say, if you are upfront about sponsored posts and give your honest and unbiased opinion why the hell not?!? You wouldn't be selling out at all why shouldn't you make the most of all your hard work with this blog! x

    Kittenish Behaviour Blog

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  56. I appreciate you so much more now that youve been honest. Im new to the blogging thing and had someone email me asking for a review when i only had 1 follower. it shows most of the people who write to you dont really gve a shit as they know that any views for giving something as little as £15 away is a bonus to them.

    Cheers for being honest Lilly! :) x

    http://therealsteph.blogspot.com/

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  57. I say go for it! I generally agree with what's already been said: it's okay as long as you keep this blog YOURS and as long as you're honest. Also the idea of only somehow merging it into a regular outfit posts sounds great to me because I usually don't enjoy those sponsor posts where there the person doesn't anything else to say than 'OMG, this is so awesome!' It's great to make a review post on something that you can talk about but some things doesn't really have to be reviewed in a special post because it's enough to only see them on pictures etc.

    I think sponsor/review posts are great because you have the opportunity to show your readers a shop they (or even you) wouldn't know about otherwise and also by giving your opinion on a given item/product you help the readers to make their decision about buying it or not :)

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  58. I don't have a blog but i think its really sweet that you're asking our opinions :) I don't think there is a problem accepting freebies to review if you have a genuine interest in the product and think your followers will too. Also, i think a few ads on your blog would be fine, as long as they're not popping up all over the place, but i know you would never do that :)

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  59. Hi,

    I think its ok if to get freebies or promote products & have sponsers if they are to your taste and the kindof thing you'd usually buy for yourself or post about anyway. And obviously if you are kindof promoting something you like etc you are just sharing with your readers what u like whilst getting paid and makes no difference to the reader. (Not great at expressing myself writing so hope you get what I mean)

    Anyway I dont think its selling out unless you personally couldnt care less about something you are promoting just to get money.

    x

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  60. This is perhaps an unpopular view but I really, really don't like sponsored posts. At all. As someone who works in PR, blogs for me are what (in a dream world) magazines should be. They're almost a diary of someone's life. The magic of a blog, I find...is knowing that you, the blogger stumbled across the item and wanted to share it with everyone because you genuinely love it. (Not because you have obligations to the PR) The unpredictability of blogs is ultimately what makes me read them. As soon as sponsorship comes into play it all starts seeming a little contrived and the 'diary' aspect is lost. As for people saying but you're good at it etc...people who are good at blogging can make it their career. They can work in web copywriting, in social media, they can charge for styling sessions or can freelance/ghost write/advise companies/others in successful blogging. If writing about fashion is what you love; seek out a career in fashion journalism/PR. If making money from the blog is what you're looking to do, I'd rather log onto a blog and have to compete with 5 pop up windows if it meant the content I eventually got to remained unpredictable and personal.

    Good luck with whatever you decide to do Lily, just keep in mind that it's the content people visit for, not the lack of adverts x

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  61. I was at the chictopia conference last february during fashion week & this was actually a big topic that was discussed. & I think that most people agreed that if bloggers do sponsored posts/giveaways/accept free products & it's an item that reflects their personal style or something they believe in, then it's okay because you're not cheating your readers. But like you were saying some bloggers have a hard time sticking to those ethics & become money hungry & start accepting any offers they receive. I've been reading your blog for awhile now & I think that you're very blunt & honest & your readers see & know that. you (& bloggers in general) take time to write up posts & maintain the keep of your blog so I think that if someone would stop visiting your blog just because you're trying to earn some honest revenue, then that's silly.



    http://devorelebeaumonstre.com/

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  62. Now I don't actually blog, i'm more of a 'blog stalker' in the sense that for the past few months i've found a few blogs which i absolutely LOVE and yours happens to be one of them! One day I do hope to start blogging but at the mo i'm quite content with appreciating others.

    As i don't blog my comments may have little value to you but I dont think there's anything particularly wrong with sponsered posts/advertising so long as it is in line with your own beliefs and opinions. When money is put in the picture it is all too easy for people to start taking and changing, (i've stumbles across a few of these blogs and clicked 'x' straght away as its not THEM it's the company involved) But the impression i get from you is that you wouldn't let this happen. The random one here and there, why not!

    What I love about the few blogs that i regularly go back to is that I feel you start to 'know' the person blogging so it would be pretty obvious when you started taking sponsors and doing reviews for money on items that clearly, 3 months ago you never would have worn. (again hypothetically speaking, i can't see this happening with you)

    This is what you're good at and you spend so much time doing so I don't see the issue in getting a little reward, providing of course that generally speaking your blog stays the same; YOU! xoxo

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  63. I agree with what has been posted above, concerning selectivity and giving your honest opinion about things. There do seem to be a few blogs which THRIVE on freebies and sponsorship to the point where it is all they blog about, which is quite transparent and insincere. However, as a few people have mentioned, by choosing things yourself and posting outfit you are in a way already inadvertently advertising, simply because your blog reaches SO many people, and they trust your opinion. I love it when bloggers are honest about things too - just because someone sends you something to review, that review doesn't necessarily have to be positive, you can just slate things if that is how you feel too- it works both ways.

    Even though Madokie has made a very valid point that blogging is a platform for copywriting etc, thats exactly why some people do get in to blogging - because it's damn hard to get work experience and to finance work experience in places like London for example!

    All in all, I agree with pretty much everyone above that you should take it up if you want to; you've already established yourself as a blogger whose opinion people trust, but just be mindful of the power of your opinion out there on the interwebs!

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  64. Hahha Elle and Blair,
    I think its great to get money for something you like to do. But when you have more sponsored posts then normal posts its stupid and you are doing it for the money. I wish I got paid for blogging! Another thing, even if you do a lot of posts it should be things you really like.... like oh it was okay, I guess I'll do a post on it.
    I agree that some people do it too much, I think its nice that you arent giving in to it, but maybe let a little loose, dont be too picky?
    I mean who doesnt want a little extra money? ;)
    Unless you are going to abuse it =P If you really like something, dont worry about what we think, its YOUR blog, do what you want to!
    Bellesme

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  65. i say go for it.
    there are ways to make money AND still be you without becoming a "sellout"
    just be as selective as you'd like, endorse products you believe in, and decline the ones you don't. This blog is about you, and only you and what you think, so really, you're changing absolutely nothing. (apart from the fact you'll be able to afford a few more penny sweets)

    love love <3

    http://www.wintagenetvoodle.blogspot.com/

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  66. I don't have a blog myself (yet!) and only recently got into following other blogs so I don't really know much about them. I love yours, and also if this answering question post is going to be a regular thing as a 'new idea for a post' that you were asking about the other day, I think it's a great one, very interesting.

    I definately think that you should accept more sponsorship, especially if it's from a shop that you buy from that makes it extremely relevant to your blog and not at all pushy. You should not feel guilty about making money from something you are good at! I would be happier to see some adverts on your blog as I'd know you were getting some reward for your success!

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  67. I think you're bang on Lily. I genuinely don't mind sponsored posts/reviews of free products in general. The only thing that annoys me is when the style of the post is so obviously different that it's clear it hasn't been written by the blogger or they've been made to include things. As long as the post reads like any other, it's honest, and it's about something relevant to the blog/blogger then I think it's totally fine. It's pretty easy to say that with you fakeness is not an issue! As a lot of other people said you work hard on your blog and give up a lot of your time to do it, and we all read it for free, so why shouldn't you get yourself a few treats along the way! You're never going to please everyone so you may as well please yourself! It is your blog at the end of the day :)

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  68. You're not a sellout if you get paid for doing something you love.. You're a sellout if you do something for the sole purpose of getting paid :)

    We support you Lily! <3

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  69. i feel the same way, it doesn't bother me when someone gets paid/sponsored, but i believe there are limits.

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  70. So far I've turned everything down because it wasn't something I'd like. I wouldn't be offended if you got paid and could live off the blog! I do think it's important to disclaim the fact that something is sent to you. I like to be exposed to new things and products but when a blogger's every post has them in something they were sent for free I feel a bit like I'm being used as their cash cow, especially when they present it as something they picked up themselves, not got sent.

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  71. i think go for it but only if it's something you do have an opinion on eg products, and not giving us false information.

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  72. I think you should be making money from it. BUT be careful to only choose brands you like to represent! Or go to your favorite companies direct, and speak with them about it - giving them some stats - it might persuade them to do some sort of deal?

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  73. you should do it. you put a lot of effort into this blog, and people love it - so, you deserve a reward. we won't judge.

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  74. agree with a lot of people here; if you have an opportunity to show something which appeals to you anyway, i don't see a problem..it's when you strat posting about things which aren/t you, just for the cash, which borders on sell-out territory!

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  75. As you're getting a massive amount of traffic already I think you could easily sell advertising in your sidebar like elsie flannigan - from what I've worked out with my not-so-hot maths skills she earns at least a couple of hundred a month from that alone and keeps the content real and relevant.

    Personally a sponsered post is a bit of a turn-off to me but I'm not one to buy stuff anyway (skint DIY girl! lol. I guess the majority of your readers are really into buying new stuff. I wouldn't stop reading a blog because of paid posts but I'd probably skip the individual posts :)

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  76. I think as long as you only review etc products you actually like and would reccomend, it's all good!

    I'd do that - it's interesting for your readers to find out about new products anyway.

    www.whatihearttoday.com
    www.whatihearttoday.com

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  77. Hi Lily,

    Great blog, it's really one of my favs to read and check out everyday for new pictures. I launched my own blog nearly 3 months ago and have been approached to review products, mainly beauty and I love it. I am sure to mix my reviews in with my usual posts and always give my honest opinion good or bad. I work full time so am not looking to change my blog from my hobby into my job anytime soon but getting some new, exciting beauty treats to try out every week is fun. I don't feel guilty about getting free things because most of the time I give them away to my friends. My advice is to just stay true to yourself and always be honest about the item/product you are posting about.
    Stacey x
    www.hatsnheels.blogspot.com

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  78. wow, you're being really honest with this and I like your point of view.
    earning money thanks to blog is great as long as you don't lose yourself somewhere in the middle of shoes you get for free (and which you don't like but wear them anyway because it was a gift from some company) and ads displayed on your blog (which take more space than your actual posts). I'm absolutely fine with it and if you believe you and your blog won't suffer any change for worse because of this mad advertising business why don't get money from something that you love doing?

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  79. I tried talking to you through Twitter yesterday but the bloody character limit is frustrating! As I said on there, I think it's fine as long as you keep your integrity and do unbiased reviews showing both pros and cons of the product. I also think sponsoring little websites and companies is a great way to help both you and the small businesses out. A really great blog that does this with some class is http://bleubirdvintage.typepad.com. She does have sponsors and advertising space but it's all relevant to her blog and tiny businesses, who need help against larger corporations anyway!

    I don't think many people really see it as selling out, as long as you're upfront about it! This post is a great start I rekcon. You're doing fine :)

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  80. I started my blog in September after working with you Lily on the Look Show (I was inspired, what can I say!).

    I've done a couple of giveaways on it so far but I'm not making money out of them. I've put them up in the hope of encouraging people to initially read my blog and then hoping if they enjoy it they will stick with me when the giveaway is ovahhhhhh!

    I do think though if you can potentially make money why not go for it?

    As long as you stick with the style of blogging and products that are true to YOU I don't think anyone would have a problem with it

    x

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  81. I love it that you don't do that, it makes your blog stand out.
    You're so right with that your blog is about you and not the advertisements.
    Keep it up :D
    x

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  82. hey my dear, great post..people dont talk about this kinda thing on blogs enough! i think its fine to accept the occasional free item if its your style and you'd honestly wear it..im not as big a fan on sponsered posts like talking about how great a website is or anything like that..i find it boring to read, i love reading all your posts and love your witty banter and id never want that to change :) xo

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  83. I honestly wouldn't mind if you did sponsored posts. I think what would be maddening was if you were perhaps advertising products that were way out of you usual price range. It's great to see so many British high-street pieces that I can actually think "hmm I'll buy that", but if you were to start doing posts where you were wearing something by more expensive labels I'd probably feel like there was no point in following anymore. But anyways, if you have the opportunity to get paid for doing something you love then why not go for it every once in a while? I would love it if my blog garnered that much interest! :) xxx

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  84. In my opinion this is a good thing to being paid for posts and as i'm a blogger it is a kind of 'dream' for me. So i can say it's good for you to get money with it. And as long as you continue to post how you look (which is the main reason i follow your blog and i think for so many people too) it shouldn't be a problem for followers. anyway you started the blog for your own pleasure, i guess (i dont know im really just guessing).
    so if you want money i think it is a really easy and comfortable way to earn and to top it all the best thing is it would be an occasionally stuff as you wrote.
    so that's it :)

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  85. i forgot to add as i read some comments that it is really really true that you mustn't agree to sponsor stuff you dont like! dont lose yourself and your style, it dont worth it! :)

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  86. i follow your blog and would love you to do sponsered posts,
    i think your blog is amazing and definetly agree that you should get paid for doing it. you obviously care alot about it soo why not!!!!
    i hope this has helped x

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  87. I dont have problems with bloggers getting money for their posts. I mean, most of them spend a lot of time with their blogs, probably time they should rather spend on doing some stuff for school or college or whatever. So why don't get money for it? It's absolutly ok! Go on! As long as you stil write posts about whats on your mind and your outfits and everything you write about now, noone should have a problem with that.

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  88. There's absolutely nothing wrong with being paid for what you do here, you have spent time and worked hard to get your blog to the point where so many people want to read! And that should not be wasted! Making money is hard work whoever you are, so you'd be so silly to turn down good opportunities to make more!

    All I would say is like you did, be true to yourself and your opinions and don't give praise to things you dislike, or would never ever buy. Otherwise, fab idea that you should definitely consider :)

    MJ x
    Mozzypop jewellery x

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  89. I think you gotta do what you gotta do. If your blog is a major priority, why not make money off of it? I learn a lot of things from coming on this blog becuase of you, so why not earn some money? I really don't think it's selling out at all! Honestly, I really think you should do whatever you think is right, but for me I think accepting offers or free products and such is fine!

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  90. "I decline probably around 90% of the PR related things Im offered and am very conscious of the way you guys feel about me accepting them" & "Am I being smart choosing to accept them" Decline & choosing? I'm sorry but I do know of a shop owner who you have actually contacted yourself to ask for a product for a giveaway so please do not make it out like you care so much about your readers. Yes, it may have been a little while ago but you were clearly thinking back then of ways to make money from your blog or how to make your blog more popular so I don't think you should make it out to be as if you are the one being contacted all the time & taking your readers into so much consideration when this isn't the case. I've never heard someone harp on so much about caring what their readers want all the time; you can't make out you care so much & only want to do what your readers want & claim to be yourself at the same time, otherwise little bits of the truth come out like this. Plus, if you are having to constantly ask your readers what they want without deciding for yourself, then you aren't truly being yourself from the start. I'm not saying there's anything wrong with earning money but just don't word it to make it sound like you're the one being contacted & haven't made any efforts yourself to take it a step further already.

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  91. Hi dear!
    I do think it's a good thing when you're getting paid for blogging, but stay true to yourself and what you wear. I love blogs who stay personal, and are not overloaded by advertisements. Keep it personal, maybe with a little bit of advertising, but don't let it become a huge part of your lovely blog!

    xoxo

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  92. i have been given a few free pairs of Henry holland tights but thats because i was already wearing some that i bought myself on my blog and they sent me some more to say thankyou - i liked the free ones so i wore these on my blog.
    i would never write about anything i like or do any posts from free/sponsored etc stuff more than once in a blue moon because i do want to sound like a advert or on the other end of the scalke - im often pushed for time on my posts and so prob wouldnt be able to write about the goods in a way that would credit the designer/store.
    its your blog so do what you want !
    you got yourself here - without your followers telling you what to do . and i think you should continue that way :)
    xo

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  93. Firstly, just want to stress outrage at the very first comment you have on here, did they even read your post?? Secondly, I honestly don't think I can say anything that hasn't been covered. But, if you had been voulenteering for a fashion mag and they decided to sart paying you because of the fantastic response, no1 would moan. It's the same with your blog, you pull in mass amounts of traffic, for products you choose yourself, getting them lots of coverage and sales. i think you rightly deserve to be paid for things, and you could deffo make this blog a side line career. Why the devil not, as I've always said, I know that you are a blogger who would not post about something you didn't like, or would be honest about things. Like you were with the Motel rocks dresses. Further yourself Lily, everybody else would, without question. As long as you stay true to yourself that's all that matters. I know for sure you would not turn in to Elle and Blair!! Do whatever makes you happy, and if you lose a few followers, so be it, atleast the true people will still be here,and I'm sure that will be plenty xxx

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  94. You share so much about what's going on in your life and your style choices that I would not mind if you did more reviews etc and given you've worked hard to be a regular blogger I think if you want to use your blog traffic to your advantage this is fine. I believe like most things though, there is a balance that must be maintained between your blog posts and reviews and there is a fine line between reviewing what's going to interest your reviewer and reviewing enough stuff to make decent money. I feel if you kept posting as you are but added in perhaps 3-4 reviews a month, this wouldn't harm the quality of your blog.

    I visit all types of blogs and the ones I find myself becoming increasingly tired of these days are the ones that initially started off as regular blogs (for lack of a better word) that gained a lot of popularity and turned into blogging about the free stuff they received the vast majority of the time. There is a blog I used to be a weekly reader off but I check-in less and less with her blog now. Her posts have dwindled to something like 3-4 posts per month and practically 50% of these posts is reviewing some item, some blogger event etc. I kind of feel like she's lost touch with what made her follow-able in the first place - it wasn't the product reviews or the sponsored give-aways but her style, life etc. There are other bloggers I follow, for example food bloggers, who review but maintain the balance between that and the content that originally drew in their readership. I don't mind the reviews/give-aways/events because even though they may do 1 of these posts a week, the fact that their "regular" posts vastly outnumber the other posts I don't feel like I'm having a product pushed on me.

    Bloggers who seem to take a lot of time reviewing stuff yet rarely spend as much or more time on what they originally began writing about make me feel they've lost their enthusiasm and are simply capitalising on their large readership to use their blog as a means to make £££ as opposed to sharing something with their readers. When I start to feel that's the case, I delete from my bookmarks and am unlikely to visit.

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  95. I really love your blog! You are always very honest and true to yourself, and I don't think that would change if you decided to take on sponsors/make money off of your blog. I mean it's always fun to get free stuff now and again, so I say go for it! If I had your kind of traffic, I would. I was also wondering how your blog become so popular, did you do anything to get followers, or did it just happen? Most of the time it feels like I'm talking to myself lol I would love to put myself out there more, what did you do when you first got started?

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  96. Vicky - moany & anonymous? I think it's more a case of you being ignorant of the fact that believe it or not, there are thousands of blog followers out there who don't have a blog of their own or feel the need to set everything up since all they want to do is quite happily comment on the blogs they enjoy reading instead of having one themself & since that is what the comments section is for, I'm pretty sure those who have blogs (like Lily) are aware that the comments they receive are not always going to be ones they like & is a way for readers to express their opinions. I'm not expecting everyone to like what I said but it's what I happen to have come across & my response to the questions in the post.

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  97. Only- You have obviously come here (returned infact) to provoke nothing but a reaction.

    Your first point, about those conflicting statements, the second is obviously just a rhetorical and hypothetical question asking for opinions which is pretty much what the whole last paragraph is about. You taking them out of context is ridiculous because of course they are going to be conflicting and make me sound like im saying something im not.

    Surely I have obviously accepted PR stuff before, see those motel rocks dresses ive worn, or the zara taylor things, or wallpaper rose, or anything eyeko ive been sent. I am asked to try things all the time, alot of PR companies have me on their mailing list, you seem to come across like I lie about all these PR opportunities I have, I generally dont pursue them because I dont want to.

    I have also stated on my twitter the only company who I have approached with a giveaway, and been totally honest about it. They also told me that they had not disclosed this to anyone, so therefore your obviously lying or been misinformed. I dont ask for free things, I never have done. To be honest its very common for bloggers to ask for free things for giveaways from brands they have built a relationship with, gem fatales latest blogging giveaway was mainly funded by companies who donated the prize, which many places are willing to do, I personally havent done this (apart from with shopdixi like I have said, but I ended up buying the bag I'd hoped to giveaway myself).

    To be fair I dont see what your point is, I was asking for opinions and feelings on it in general rather than in response to the question. The fact that this post is called ASK LLYMLRS (ie me, in which I stated my thoughts and feelings on the subject) Im able to decide what I want to do without other peoples help.

    I do care about my followers, Much more than alot of bloggers on the internet! And to be frank, I dont care for people like you who are obviously here just to nit pick over things and look for flaws in what I say trying to discredit me.

    Surely things like asking for opinions can only make the blog better than just doing things and having my readers not enjoy what I do. I see so many poor blogs out there who obviously couldnt give a crap what they post or do just so they can look popular on the internet and get free stuff.


    To be fair, if you had the choice im sure you would jump at the chance to get free clothes, free stuff, go to events, get money for very little effort.

    I've never wanted my blog to be money making thing, surely if I had id have plastered it with adverts, accepted every free piece of crap thats flung my way.

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  98. Firstly, I am not posting just to provoke nothing but a reaction. I am simply stating my feelings and responses to what you have asked. If you take note I did say "I'm not saying there's anything wrong with earning money" and yes, of course I would want to earn it, too if I had the chance & chose to blog. I am simply saying that what I have been told is certainly true (& is not a shop you have mentioned before) therefore, I am obviously going to question what you are saying. I guess it's just a choice of whether to trust what you are saying here or the information I have been told, either way, someone isn't telling the truth & I am by no means saying you shouldn't earn money from your blog but if what I have been told is true, then why make out as if it isn't is all I am saying. I am sure you could understand if a loyal reader had been informed of something & you're saying something else, then it wouldn't sit happy with them. I'm not sure who is telling the truth here but either way, I think just be as truthful as you can with your readers & if you have the chance to earn money from your blog, then do so but also be truthful about it, too.

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  99. well I am telling the truth so whoever told you is obviously lying, if you could inform me of who I supposedly asked for something, could either admit or deny it, but like I said i've admitted to the only time I'd done this, and like I said I bought the item myself in the end! I dont like the idea of someone spreading lies about me.

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  100. i say do whatever you want to do...your blog is amazing and you put a lot of effort into it, why not get paid? gosh, think of all the new clothes you could buy! ;) you could always have other blogs be showcased on your own blog for a fee, too.

    good luck with your decision, lovely!

    xx

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  101. As long as it fits in with your own blog, I can't see any problem with it. I work so hard on mine that why shouldn't I make some money out of it or get a few freebies?

    It's just about not alienating your readers, really. I'm working at the moment on monetising my site with adverts and things and trying to make some real money out of it!

    ▲ WOLF WHISTLE ▲

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  102. Commenting as a reader, I read a lot more blog entries now then I do magazine articles. This is because I despise being manipulated constantly by advertising, and writers who pretend that products are really good just because they are being paid. When it comes to blogs,I love hearing what I'd like to believe is their real personal and honest opinion. If I don't like what I'm reading I can just ignore it or consider why. I don't care if a blogger is being paid because it might introduce me to a product I might like. It's nice to know what is out there. The only thing I wouldn't like was if a blogger wrote about a product and pretended they adored it when really they were just being paid to pretend. I think once a Youtuber or blogger starts getting paid though they seem to lose some of their honesty and instead it's replaced with the cliched, old advice we get so often in magazines. I think staying true to yourself is important but we're all only human.

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  103. Love your blog! check out mine-

    ellie-walker.blogspot.com

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  104. I think its perfectly fine to accept sponsorship/advertisement as long as you want to! I personally do not really read posts that are purely about sponsors but at the end of the day you post quite often so one or two a month would be fine I think. Also, think of the extra clothes you could buy if you did a bit extra? haha

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  105. Hun its not a problem at all, you should definetly go for it! Just think that if companys send you clothes then us as the followers will be able to see a larger variety of outfits. We'll also be aware of more products in the market, and knowing that your feedback is truthful, we'l be able to know whether they in fact work or if its simply a waste of money..overall its just going to benefit everyone x

    cupcakesandflowers.blogspot.com

    x o x o

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  106. Hey, darling. I'm Brazilian and I'm doing a paper about some verbs in Portuguese and English. My professor ask me to find a text that isn't on newspaper or lyrics so I found your blog and also the verbs on this post. I suppose to use it in my paper if you permit. It's important to say that I'll put the credits of yours, ok? Thanks and I'm sorry for my English.

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  107. This is such a conroversial topic amongst bloggers. I resisted for a very long time to do any sponsored posts or anything like that but actually wrote something about a company I have now worked with a few times this week and how they work etc. I think that full disclosure is absolutely necessary. I also feel that an honest opinion is too. However I don't particularly like to bitch on my blog so I would rather just not write about something than write a bad review. Is that wrong??? I do put a lot of unpaid effort into my blog and it is certainly nice to be offered something free from time to time. I agree that some bloggers become obsessed with that and it can be difficult to resist the freebies - I guess that as long as it fits with you and your blog and your honest then it's not really a problem. If someone else has a problem with it, so be it - they can't like everything about my blog!! sorry for the long rambling comment - hopefully it makes sense. Just stumbled across your blog again and remembered how much I liked it when I found it before - going to add it to my links list so I can find you again :)

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  108. Oh hun, don't listen to the critics! I think its great that you're apprehensive to the sponsorship cos it shows you're loyal to your readership. Its great that companies are willing to offer you freebies...shows how great your blog is that they see you as an endorsement opportunity. I agree with the 1st view people that said, as long as YOU like what you're endorsing, you're not selling out like a Kardashian, merely acting as any public figure would. :)

    http://say-bleurgh.blogspot.com

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