HOW TO GET FREE STUFF BLOGGING
If you have been blogging for a while and you’re not seeing any fringe benefits, you need to read this post on how to get free stuff blogging.
THE BASICS OF “FREE STUFF”
Oh yes…the perks of being an influencer! Companies are basically beating down your door trying to give you free stuff. Oh, what’s that? They’re not? Well then, you obviously need to know how to get free stuff blogging, and I’m here to help!
Obviously, brands and companies are not just giving you free stuff because they like you. They want you to give them publicity in the form of product reviews, blog posts, social media mentions, and more. So, when I say “free stuff”…it’s not truly free. Regardless, I’m going to explain to you my journey in how to get free stuff blogging.
SO WHAT KIND OF STUFF DID I GET EXACTLY?
One of my websites is sort of wine related, so I have gotten SO. MUCH. FREE. WINE. And vodka, and schnapps, and mixes, and holiday liqueurs…and more! What mom doesn’t want free wine, am I right??
It was an absolute blast having cases…that’s right, I said CASES, not just bottles, of really good wines get delivered on my door step every day. The UPS man was so intrigued by my life and my wine deliveries, he just has to ask what it was that I do for a living, lol!
A few of my other websites involve health food, baby gear, and parenting. So, I have received gift boxes of healthy kids snacks, gift cards to grocery stores, and samples of lots of yummy things. I have also received free Boppy pillows, free video baby monitors, clothing, books of all kinds, and more!
At Christmas one year, I set up a Holiday Gift Guide, featuring all sorts of unique gift ideas. Since I knew how to get free stuff blogging, I was able to save money on presents that year by targeting my gift guide niche to things I knew my family would love and give them the gifts! Yes, I’m cheap. But also very smart, right?!
I was invited to dozens of movie premiers, parties thrown by brands, and restaurant openings. I received free tickets to every theater show that came to our region, and to shows like Kidz Bop, Peppa Pig, and more. (hooray for my kids!)
IF YOU’RE STILL READING, BE PATIENT…I’M GETTING THERE.
I was invited to be part of morning news shows to promote my brand and my blog…All of which I turned down, by the way, because I have absolutely no desire to be on TV. I get nervous when I have to be in front of people talking about what I do. I have a fear of failure and major stage fright. I can write all day behind my computer, but that is where I’d like to stay, thank you very much!
WHAT’S THE CATCH WITH ALL THAT FREE STUFF?
There’s a catch to getting free stuff, and this is the reason I stopped accepting gifts from PR companies and brands. When you accept free stuff, it’s never truly “free”. They say that there’s no such thing as a free lunch for a reason.
Accepting free gifts means you owe them something. A blog post, a product review, in any case, they want you to give them some good quality content in exchange for the swag. When you’re spending time keeping up with all the loot arriving in the mail, and having to thoroughly test the products out, take photos, write a blog post, publicize it, and follow up with the company…..when you’re doing all these things, you’re not really investing in YOUR OWN brand. You’re investing in someone else’s.
JUST BECAUSE I KNOW HOW TO GET FREE STUFF BLOGGING, DOESN’T MEAN I SHOULD
I love presents, just ask my husband. But, I got into the blogging business to become a millionaire, not to get free wine. A millionaire can buy her own damn wine, right?
I got SO CAUGHT UP IN the PR world, schmoozing, and getting my free swag bags early on in my blogging life, that I lost sight of my goals. I was spending ALL my time promoting other people’s products, and not promoting myself or my own brand at all.
I was also losing my audience. While you can definitely seamlessly incorporate paid sponsorships into a blog and make them feel natural, I wasn’t doing it right, and people could tell. I was pumping out so-so content and losing traffic because of it.
The “free stuff” phase of my career was definitely fun, no doubt. But I put an end to it so that I could focus on my business and the long term.
SO DO YOU STILL WANT TO KNOW EXACTLY HOW TO GET FREE STUFF BLOGGING?
Then here’s what you need to do.
First, you need a strong social media presence and you need good branding. Make the look and feel of your blog match ALL your social media.
You need to look professional. I also highly recommend having your email address match your domain name. For instance, the email for this website is info (at) momsmakemoneyfromhome .com. It shows we are legit and own our site.
Some companies won’t even talk to you if you don’t have this.
Next, add good contact info and a media kit to your website. Brands need to know how to reach you, and they like to see your stats. Number of followers, page views, etc. Those are all good things to add to your media kit.
Start flirting, with brand names, that is. Research what products will fit into your niche and that your audience will be interested in. Reach out to those brands via Twitter and let them know how much you love their stuff.
More often than not, they have flirted right back with me and sent me a nice swag bag. Then I would do a product review or blog post about it.
Lastly, get in touch with PR companies, and let them know that you’d gladly be added to their email list of bloggers and influencers. This is how I started getting BIG offers rolling in, except the PR company contacted ME, I didn’t have to contact them.
So, have I given you some good tips on how to get free stuff blogging? I really hope so! Keep in mind, though, there’s no such thing as a free lunch! 🙂 But, getting free gifts is really fun, and I wish you lots of luck!