Saturday, 16 July 2011

THE GUEST SPOT: Why Working With Brands is Like Dating

I hope you all enjoyed last weeks Guest Spot, and have all popped on over to read more posts. Onto this weeks, and its a post by someone you should know by now, and a Guest at Family Panel, Emma from the blog Mellow Mummy. Emma is a Mum of one, a tech genius, edits Parent Wheels (a Top Gear for parents!) and is a comper extraordinaire, so if you don't already read her blog, make sure to bookmark it for a mix of reviews, parenting and prizes.

The post is called "Why Working With Brands is Like Dating".

For a little while now I've felt that, as a blogger, working with brands is a little like a string of awkward teenage dates.

Me: 16, Frequent pub-goer
You: 17, Pub-quiz team-member, college drop-out
The Date: The one where we ate Hobnobs (not even the chocolate ones) in silence in a rusty Mini Metro, staring out to sea on a rainy Sunday afternoon at Hayling Island
The PR Lesson: If we have nothing in common, this relationship will go nowhere. I have nothing to offer you, you have nothing to offer me. Let's just call it a day.

Me: 17, Between relationships
You: 17, Cute, not as experienced as you're willing to admit
The Date: The one where we fumbled about in the dark a bit and I went home feeling sorry for you
The PR Lesson: Don't be afraid to admit if you've never worked with bloggers before. I'm always willing to share my tips and advice if you ask me nicely! I'd much rather you were honest and took things slowly than embarrassed yourself and put me off for life.

Me: 18, University fresher, drunk most of the time
You: 45, Local entrepreneur, bald
The Date: The one where you gave me flowers, picked me up in your fast car, made me feel grown-up, took me out for dinner and then I declined ‘coffee’ at yours... I never called you back.
The PR Lesson: Yes, you may have something impressive to show off. Yes you may have lots of money with which to buy me lovely goodies but I'm not going to jump into bed with you just because of your bling. Our relationship needs to be about more than the freebies. For starters, I have to like you and what you have to offer. Without this, you're just wasting your money – I'm not going to pimp you, or your product if it isn't relevant to my readers.

I can think of a million other too-close-to-the-truth examples; The one where I really wasn't trendy enough for you. The one where your language was too saucy even for me. The one where you asked me to go behind other people's backs. The one where you went behind my back. The one where you actually bored me to sleep (but I woke up before you noticed). The one where I thought I really liked you but it turns out you're an arse.

But they're not all bad (the PR's OR the teenage boyfriends). Take the PR who asks you exactly how you want to be wined and dined. The PR who reads your blog regularly and knows what topics you blogged about yesterday, last week or even several months ago. The PR who you could chat with for hours on the phone. The PR who really understands why you blog and what's in it for you. The PR who tells you what's in it for them. The PR who doesn't need you or want you to blog about a specific event or product but just sends you a small gift to cheer you up when you are feeling down. These are the brand representatives you want to get to know better. So give them your number and hope that they call you... it may be a match made in heaven.

Me: 23, In a full-time relationship
You: 22 , Single, shy but scrumptious
The Date: Road Trip to Niagara Falls – you told me I had a nice smile and beautiful big eyes
The PR Lesson: Gentle flattery and a positive attitude gets you a very long way.

I married him.

Thanks to Emma for a great insightful piece- and lets hope brands take notice!

If you have a post you'd like to submit, then feel free to email with the post or a link. We have no spots for the next 3 weeks, but are always looking for submissions. 

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