There seems to be some sort of confusion regarding the difference between a blogger and an influencer and how our content differs.So i’m going to try and clear this up here for people who actually have a mind of their own.
A blogger by definition is someone who has their own website and writes about whatever they want.For example i love to write about make-up,family and my own daily life.Other bloggers i know also write about other topics such as food, home design, fashion, mental health or what they did at work today etc.We do not get told what to write,we do not get paid to keep what is in essence an online journal.We simply write about what we love and want to share.There is no team of marketing specialists,no pr management,just us and our laptops.
An influencer however can go by many names,even a blogger but they are paid for some if not all of their content and see their website/blog as a way of making an income.They are part of a PR list,they get sent products to review and paid to recommend those products.They have built up a great reputation with their readers,gained their trust and are able to use this to make a steady income by the means of affiliated links/follow links/ads/events etc.In most cases influencers have a big following on social media and use this to their advantage.
The confusion however seems to come from the grey area between being a blogger and becoming an influencer,if you’re trying to enter into the world of being an influencer then you can call yourself either one,right?
If a blogger has written only a few paid reviews they would generally still call themselves a blogger,not realising that they have actually become an influencer.It doesn’t matter if you haven’t made your first £80 from any content you’ve published,if someone has brought something you’ve been paid to recommend then you are in effect an influencer.I don’t need to give you lessons on what it means to influence someone,but you get my point.In most cases,influencers that i know give honest reviews of their paid recommendations.They tend to only recommend a product they would be happy to use themselves,hence why a lot of bloggers have loyal followings.
Now i’ve explained what the difference between a blogger and an influencer is,now i want to rant talk about the negative attitude aimed at both and why it needs to stop!Certain media outlets have published articles portraying influencers and bloggers in a demeaning and slanderous way.Take for example the article in a well known magazine only a few months ago,slamming influential bloggers and belittling their worth as influencers.What right does someone in the public eye get to belittle a person who makes a living by doing the same job,just under a different title?!I can understand how a well established editorial/assistant can become jealous and write the most petulant piece on how bloggers have no place in real editorials roles.They’ve probably worked in their role for a number of years,become accustomed to being first in line for the latest scope.Suddenly having their nose put out of joint by an influencer who has the freedoms of self-employment,can become really infuriating-especially to those who feel superior.
Even then though it doesn’t give that person or anyone the right,to pass their vile opinion onto others.Which brings me onto my actual issue,which is people’s rights and opinions.
It makes no difference to me whether someone has been paid to review/recommend a product,i am perfectly capable of deciding for myself if a product is worth my money.
If you include links in your post that make you a few pennies from my purchase i will happily click on it.I would click on any link that took me directly to a product i wanted to buy,who has time to search for a product themselves these days?
Aslong as that influencer is honest somewhere on their website that their content has affiliated links,it’s cool.Honesty gains you the trust of many,arrogance however earns you nothing.There’s nothing worse then seeing someone on social media say that they haven’t disclosed the fact they do use affiliate links in their posts because they didn’t feel it necessary.If you haven’t worked it out yet that morally it is important,then you should probably know that legally you are obliged to let the public know.
Having said that i am seeing far too many influencers being trolled by people on social media,even in their post comments about being paid for content.I see no other explanation other than jealousy for this outpour of people spewing their vile opinions across the web.I can see where some frustration from other bloggers/readers can come from.When you’ve read someone’s blog for years and they typically write about the most must see travel destinations,then they sudden start posting about this wonderful vitamin that can make your skin glow like Kim Kardashian, you could be forgiven for calling them a sellout.
It is not ok however to leave hurtful,unconstructive,hateful comments across their site or social media channels.Hours of work goes into their posts,whether paid for or not and the time it takes to gather information,take specific photos,it’s not easy.Please stop holding a grudge against people trying to make a living doing what they love.
Same goes for us bloggers,just because we share some personal posts, recommend products we love and post regularly on our various social media channels doesn’t mean we have to provide information we don’t want to.There’s a line that even us unpaid bloggers have and honestly i see far too many people cross that line.
The majority of us do this as a hobby,during our free time.None of us expect to be inundated with messages asking us questions such as – who’s that woman you were with yesterday?Where is your child?Where do you get the money to buy all your make up?These questions are personal,you are a stranger on the web.Asking people about their finances and family and friends isn’t ok.
Yes some people are happy to answer those types of questions but once a person makes it clear that they aren’t going to answer them,don’t start leaving hateful comments.Or even going to the extent of using personal content that blogger has shared to help others against them to be vindictive.
So whether a blogger makes money from their content or writes just for a hobby,it doesn’t give anyone the right to bully or harass them.
There is a small percentage of bloggers and influencers that are pulling away from social media,closing down their blogs and sites because of the hate they have receiving,everyone responds well to constructive criticism but this isn’t constructive and it helps no-one.
Please think about the impact your words have on people.I don’t want to lose any more decent blogs or even friends i interact with on other social media platforms because of unsolicited comments.