I feel the need to address a recent issue that has been brought to my attention. I want my readers to know my thoughts and stance on the subject as well as fellow bloggers. Please do not read this if you cannot be respectful AND mature in your response or comments. I completely understand and of course respect everyone's difference in opinion but please just appreciate the same in return. FYI...this is long so read when you have time :)
So as a blogger there are several things I have learned over the past few years (and I am by NO MEANS and expert, I still have far to grow):
A.) This is a competitive trade as in most other careers AND this is a job for some of us. Though I believe those who blog as hobby still have to worry at times about its competitive nature. A little competition is good but not when it turns nasty. Blogging is still fairly new to some so we should be educating others on its benefits and encourage companies to work with more bloggers/individuals than just you.
B.) Bullying seems to be spreading into the cyber world very quickly and even with GROWN and seasoned adults. What goes around DOES come around. I have had several large bloggers help me when I was little and I am willing to help those who need it from me now (ask around...I do). Karma.
C.) HONESTY is key (although some believe they can hid behind a computer screen with their lies). Individuals, Friends, Family, AND Companies actually appreciate the feedback we provide even if it is BAD feedback. There is always a way to remain respectful and professional about how you say something negative.
D.) Because any form of social media is a form of selling yourself (to friends, family, companies, or fellow bloggers) people tend to forget sometimes too much is TOO much. No one (at least I have never met anyone) likes being blasted with spam even by their friends. Be respectful and not pushy, change things up every once in a while, and no still means NO.
My reason for these specific four lessons is the ridiculous amount of complaints I personally have received from friends, readers, fellow bloggers, and companies alike. None of which have thankfully (or just yet) been directed at me or A Lucky Ladybug. I may tend to be a very brass person at times and don't always have the appropriate filter. BUT, I genuinely try and read every comment, criticism, or compliment I receive - I READ, HEAR, and take to HEART. Sometimes I may not always change when criticized and especially if it is minor (in my opinion) and it may only be one complaint but I take note and try to fix things to fit the common good for everyone involved.
I was given a fantastic opportunity a while back to with the company Ohio Flame. They were phenomenal in every way! Not only did my fire pit ship right away they were upfront about how it would age, what the expectations of the review were, and everything including quality, which exceeded my expectations. I truly believe that had they not been, their VP, would have been understanding and still worked with me. I have had several companies thank me for my negative feedback because of how tasteful it was. Though this was not the case with Ohio Flame as I LOVED mine, I have had the opportunity to be a contact for their VP through any and all of their bloggers and blogging program.
Quite frankly I was in shock to learn several bloggers had taken advantage of their graciousness and either took MONTHS (2-4) to complete their review and some not at all. Each blogger was contacted several times with little or no response and excuse after excuse about why they hadn't completed this review. Now keep in mind this is not the first company that has complained this was happening. The most recent blogger had taken 3 months to complete as she was sick and had an unexpected move - yet still continued to complete other posts and reviews. Then after posting the review finally she decided she had a poor experience with her fire pit and was "unsatisfied" another month later but instead of contacting the company first to see if it could be resolved she changed the review and proceeded to blast Ohio Flame on every form of social media she could.
Of course, I would expect a blogger to change the review if something happened after it had been posted but it is as common as when you purchase an item to contact the company to get a resolution rather than being "ugly and immature" about it. This kind of behavior gives those of us professional bloggers a bad name as Ohio Flame has now decided to discontinue their blogging program after this final incident. This is happening with a lot of companies lately where bloggers are leaving a bad taste in their mouth. VERY UNFORTUNATE and I am very offended.
I CANNOT stand people who think I do reviews only to get free products or bloggers who say they do it for that reason too. I take a lot of offense when I hear things like this because I work very hard NOT to copy and paste the same info you can find on a company website and at times I am overwhelmed and behind with the amount of products because I spend SO MUCH time with EACH product that comes through my door. I make it a point to support EVERY company I have worked with good or bad and I take every project they are working on to heart as if it was my own (which is also why I feel a little crazy at times).
I don't expect everyone to be exactly the same or feel the same but I think all in all no matter how or why you are blogging we all need to remember once something is out on the internet it is out there forever. You may be able to hide behind a computer but remember you can't hide from your actions and everything eventually comes back to you.
- About the Ladybug
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