Layered Dress + Moto Jacket // What Is Your Content Worth?
In a recent interview, I was asked the following question: “People say it takes business owners about 4 years to start being really successful. Now that you’re on your 4th year of blogging, what can you say to that?” Um, hello freak out. I definitely don’t feel like I’ve “made it” by any means as a blogger and I sure haven’t blow up yet. (I’ve been stuck at 22K followers for about 3 weeks now... Help me!) But I do believe the question came out of a sincere appreciation for my work. While maybe I don’t see my success, other brands and publications just might. I’ve spoken to many other bloggers who feel the same way, that our work isn’t good enough, that our followings aren’t growing, and that our engagement is low.
This constant self doubt is absolutely detrimental to our businesses. It’s important to realize your value even when you feel like you’re failing, because otherwise you are sure to undersell yourself to brands. If you don’t believe your content is worth actual money, why would a brand pay you? And if they are paying you, they’ll probably negotiate a fee way below your worth if you’re not going to fight them on it. Never forget: They are reaching out to YOU, which means they understand the value you can bring to their brand.
Ask anyone, I am the world’s worst negotiator. When I finally believed in my content enough to start charging, I was lowballing my prices at about $25 a blog post. Now break that down. It takes me about 2 hours to do my hair and makeup and plan my outfit. It takes about an hour to shoot the look. Selecting and editing the photos takes another 2 hours. Tack on another hour for writing the blog post and doing any associated backend work. That means I was essentially valuing myself at $4.16 an hour. That. Is. Crazy.
I still don’t know the golden equation for how much I should charge (and getting brands to agree to pay your fee is a whole other story), but the first step is doing a self evaluation of your content and recognizing its worth. Are your photos consistent and high quality? Are you getting decent engagement? Are you meeting deadlines and following post requirements? These are the types of questions you should be asking yourself to determine your content’s worth. If you can answer yes to these questions, you are more valuable than you realize. Brands don’t see that your Instagram following is stuck at 20K. All they see is that you produce beautiful, consistent photos and that you would be a perfect fit for their next campaign, exactly as you are. Once you recognize that, you’ll start to see the value in your current success and pitch brands accordingly.
Layered Blue Dress: Jay Godfrey (c/o)
Black Moto Jacket: Eleven Paris (c/o)
Waldorf Chain Party Bag: Henri Bendel (c/o)
Black Marina Booties: M4D3 Shoes (c/o)
Photography: Fausto Nuñez