The mom blogosphere has been all abuzz lately with posts imploring bloggers to “know their worth.” Liz of Mom-101 initiated the dialog with her post entitled, “Nothing in life is free. Except, it seems, a mommyblogger.” She asked her readers to take charge and turn down offers of product and giveaways in return for blog space, stating “Even if you’re just starting out, even if you have 10 readers and two of them are your toddler twins, your time and effort and endorsement are worth something.”
I agree wholeheartedly. Your blog is your space in the world wide web– the only place that you get to make each and every decision. I ignore 99.9% of the pitches that make their way to my inbox. It’s insulting to be addressed by Ms. Scary and even more insulting for people to think that I would be willing to dedicate my time and energy for some crappy product in return. No, thank you. I’m worth more than that. And so are you.
But… You have to start somewhere.
I think it’s naive to think that the overall mommy blogging community has all that many options, especially when you are starting out and have “10 readers, two of whom are your toddler twins.” The climate is not the same as it was five years ago. There are thousands of blogs competing for the same ad space and the same opportunities. It takes time to become established and respectable enough to be able to demand actual money for your time and effort. And before you do, you need to get some experience under your belt. And that experience? It doesn’t pay all that much. You have to start somewhere.
I have been paid (well) for my services as a blogger, and I have worked in exchange for product. You know what? The box full of cake decorations that will last me for the next decade and pricey vacuum made me far happier than the money that I worked my ass of for that went towards gas and groceries. Yes, money is a great thing. In fact, I really could use more of it right about now. But, I don’t think there is anything wrong with supplementing that with a product here and there. I’m sorry, but free stuff is fun, and I like being able to pass it on to my readers.
So, yes, know your worth. Pick and choose what works for you. But, you don’t have to feel badly if you are willing to post a giveaway without getting too much in return. At least, I don’t. As long as you are behind your decisions, that’s all that really matters. To me, I mean.