I recently read a blog post written by David Shaul who writes a blog with his wife called David & Donetta. The post in question was called, How I Sold Out My Authentic Dad Blog. The post was about not writing many organic or authentic posts, and basically just making money from sponsored posts or link placements etc. I’m sure you get the idea. The post inspired me to write this because I think we are getting it wrong with authenticity.
While reading it I had the overwhelming thought that bloggers are getting it wrong when it comes to being organic and authentic.
The meaning of authentic according to Oxford English Dictionary is as follows. “Of undisputed origin and not a copy; genuine”
I often read that bloggers won’t read blog posts that have a paid link or a review and I for one cannot understand why. Many paid posts are as interesting as blog posts that are not paid.
More importantly many paid posts are as authentic and original as anything else. Personally when I’m writing a post that is a collaboration with a brand, I try my best to make it feel natural and more often than not it is directly related to my life or something that may have happened to me, or something I have experienced in my life, and it will quite often try to be raising awareness of something that I am passionate about such as mental health or online safety in regard to my children.
Yes, it’s ultimately an ad for a brand, but there is a message from me personally and it’s completely authentic and original and most certainly is not a copy. What I can’t work out is why is that wrong? Why is that not acceptable to the blogging world? Why do bloggers feel the need to slate those posts as not readable, because I have being lucky enough to have been paid for my time. Well I have my suspicions.
A couple of years ago I remember seeing many dad bloggers collaborating with Xbox. This was at a time with my own blog, where yes, I was getting some interest from brands, but it was minimal. The truth is I was a little bit jealous, but it spurred me on to develop my blog so hopefully I would get these opportunities. I read all of these Xbox posts and learned from them all, so one day I could create authentic and original paid content that also had a natural feel, because that is the secret; creating a paid blog post that has that natural feel. I might add it’s not easy, but it’s certainly achievable.
I recently did a post for the Post Office about life insurance. Yes it was paid, but it was raising the importance of life insurance to protect your children’s future. Surely that’s a good thing? So I got payment for the post, and there is of course a reason for that. I have worked hard to build up my brand for the last four years and brands rightly or wrongly consider me an influencer capable of getting their message across, which I might add I am totally ok with, after all blogging now makes up a large percentage of my income.
If you are writing a paid post or a blog post about your life without payment they are all original and authentic content. All blog posts if written well have a message and it’s really not relevant if you received money in return for your time.
For me personally I’m tired of reading blog posts saying that because it’s paid or a review post it’s not authentic or original. It is.
I would love to know what you think . Are paid blog posts authentic and original or not? Let me know your thoughts.