When I was trying to decide what to write for this weeks ‘Blog Club‘, I thought about the questions I get asked most by other bloggers and the one area of blogging that seems to be a little hush hush and mysterious is…..money! However, it is not just about the money, lots of people message me asking how to respond to the emails they receive from brands or PRs. They lack confidence and I hope by writing this post, I can help to give all those who need it, a little more confidence and direction in their paid work with brands. Fingers crossed!
The difficulty is that in our industry there is no standard pricing. You cannot go onto a blogging website and download a price list detailing what you should charge. Wouldn’t that be lovely if you could?! The thing is your ‘fee’ depends on so many factors and when it comes down to it, your fee will be a figure you are happy with; regardless of anything other people say or do. So, while I can’t say you should be charging X amount, I can, hopefully, shed some light on how you can start to get an idea of what your fees should be in the current market. I should say that this post will be focused on the UK market and on family, parenting, lifestyle blogs. Other countries are making their own rules regarding fees and different niches, even within the UK, are charging completely different fees to ‘us’.
What you should take into account;
- The amount of traffic you get.
- How long it will take you to carry out the task? For example, doing a week long challenge that you blog about should attract a higher fee than a quick blog post. Include in this calculation how much time it is going to take you to promote it too, once written.
- The size of your social reach. The bigger and more engaged your network and larger your reach, then the more business’ will want to work with you and the higher fee you will be able to demand.
- Your Domain Authority. Domain Authority is a measure of the power of a domain name and is one of many search engine ranking factors. Domain Authority is based on three factors: Age, Popularity, and Size. It is a number between 0 and 100 (the higher number the more authority the blog has, the higher up the search engines it will appear and the more desirable it will be). Some business will want a blog to have a DA of at least 25 (some brands don’t care), while anything over 40 is a really good score. You can find your DA here.
- Are you adding extra value? Are you adding a video to the post? Creating content that needs further skills? Then make sure this is considered as well.
- How engaged if your audience? How much influence do you have on your network. It’s not always just about the size of your network, but how engaged they are. Do you get lots of comments, can you show a brand that people are engaged with you and your content. If you can then this should attract a higher fee.
- What will they pay? Now you NEVER have to take any fee. Just because a brand offer you 20p and a packet of polos, doesn’t mean you should be grateful and accept. However, your minimum fee is totally up to you. We have all got bills to pay, but just don’t undervalue yourself or your blog. If a brand is contacting you, then they are interested in working with you, so take confidence from that and work with it. What they will pay varies from niche to niche, with beauty and fashion industries generally paying more than parenting.
What should you charge?
One starting point is to figure out an hourly rate for content creation (the post writing part), then add on top a fee for the additional skilled aspect to the post, i.e the video creation. Again these fees are what you feel happy with. You can ask friends or in group what the going rate is and some might share their media pack/rate card.
If you were working in an office then you might think £20 an hour is great. Remember though that you should factor in the desirability of your blog space. I would demand more for a post on my site, than I would to write a post for another site, as my post has a value of its own.
Our friends across the pond are stating that even a newbie blogger should be charging $250 minimum (roughly £160) and I think this shows how their market is still ahead of ours. Most new bloggers would be very lucky to find a UK brand that would pay that much to an unknow blogger with limited pageviews.
Remember that any sponsored post you do is evergreen advertising for the brand. So all you newer bloggers out there, remember that even if your traffic might not be huge right now, the brand are getting a good deal, as the post will still be on your blog when your traffic is greater down the line.
It definitely shouldn’t be a one size fits all fee. You are not going to have one flat rate for everything offer on your blog. Some work will require more time and effort; some people will want a bigger social media promotion package than others, so my advice to you is to be flexible. Making sure you are still dancing to your own tune and not the tune of the brand/PR/SEO. Ultimately it will come down to what the brand is willing to pay. Be prepared to negotiate and think of the bigger picture. Is it is brand that you will benefit by being involved with? Is there a promise of further work? If yes, then bear this in mind, but only agree to a fee when you are happy with it.
There is a vast difference in the fees charged by the bloggers I know. Some people will write a sponsored post for £30-40, while others won’t put fingers to keyboard for less than £200 and there isn’t always a massive difference in the stats of these bloggers.
There is a formula that some bloggers use to decide on advertising fees for their blogs and that is; £10 for every 10 of your DA score + £10. So for example my DA is 43, so my monthly fee for a standard advert (300 x 300 or whatever yours is) should be around £50 per month. You might then choose to knock it down slightly for a series of prebooked adverts.
Anyway, back to sponsored posts. I did a little research and come up with this formula, which I think gives you your rough ‘rate card’ top line fee – your DA x 4.5.
However, it isn’t simply as cut and dried as that, you could be offering much more value in certain areas than someone with the same DA as you. That’s why I can’t give you an exact fee appropriate for your blog, there are simply far too many influencing factors; not least how much the brand want to work with you. My standard rate card rate is based on the above formula, I have accepted less on occassion and have also agreed larger fees than standard when the project is more complex or it will take more time.
Responding to Brand/Pr Emails
I have a few standard responses to help you negotiate with brands and put you on the right track. Talking about money is never easy, right?! These can be copied and pasted, then tweaked for the brand/project. What they should do is to help you to start the conversation the right way and help you get paid what you deserve.
All you have to do is sign up to our newsletter and these responses will be emailed to you. Simples!
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I hope this post helped you to feel more confident when talking about money. If you have any questions please ask them in the comments below. If you want me to cover a certain topic in Blog Club, then please also let me know in the comments and I will try my best!
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