A little background.
Most of y'all know about my anonymous-ish blog Finding My Virginity, that matches my whole online presence as Belle Vierge/Belle Femme. In July, I started a new blog under my real name. I've worked really hard on it, and I hope to monetize it in February after a trial run of ads in January (blogging friends will get free ads so I can practice).
My anonymous blog still gets a decent amount of attention, especially considering I only write 1-2 times there a month. Last week I received this email.
My name is [redacted], and I'm the [position redacted] reaching out to you on behalf of Williams-Sonoma. When it comes to creating a wedding registry, some don't know where to start, and some tend to go a little overboard.
We'd love for you to share your own wedding registry do's and don'ts in an upcoming post on your blog by sharing some tips and tricks that you personally have used or would use in the future. Since there is no real rulebook to registry etiquette, there's nothing better than being inspired by those around you. Anything goes, so we can't wait to see what you come up with.
Our social team is intrigued, and may be featuring some of their favorite segments. So let me know as soon as possible if you are interested, and I can provide you with some additional information. I look forward to speaking with you soon.
I replied back immediately via my professional email and not my anonymous one. After several days, I replied via my anonymous email, in case she didn't receive my other one. She responded today. Below is our exchange.
Hi [redacted]. I don't know if you received my email last week, that I sent from my professional email address. I've copied it below.
You emailed me earlier today at my anonymous blog in regards to a blog post on my wedding registry process.
If you spent some time looking at my anonymous blog, you may have noticed a recent dwindling in posts there. In July, I started a blog under my real name, where I post 2-5 times a week. I've written several posts related to weddings, like about my best friend's bridal showers and about the honor of being invited to weddings. [Links to relevant blog posts redacted]
If you're interested in a collaboration with my new blog, I'd love to hear more information. While it's not as established as my previous one, my page views have increased every month, at a much more rapid rate than my anonymous blog did.
Let me know what you think!
Hi [Real Name],
Thanks for taking the time to get back to me. Yes, I did receive your last email and I apologize for my lack of response. I would be more than happy to continue this initiative with your new blog.
Whether you choose to create a picture board, include a bulleted list, or even share a registry etiquette story - you have total creative freedom! With all the in's and out's of planning a wedding, many people tend to forget the basic guidelines of determining what they want versus what they need. Including any tips you've picked up, from either buying from a registry or putting one together, will do the trick!
Considering that we are only reaching out to a select group of bloggers, I would prefer if you didn't disclose any of my personal information within your post as to not encourage others to contact me to participate. Our social team may feature some of their favorites on social, so let me know as soon as your post goes live on your blog. Be sure to qualify your post by mentioning Williams-Sonoma, and we also have a great wedding registry resource page that would be great to highlight in your post as well for those seeking inspiration for planning their own big day. I look forward to seeing what you come up with!
So here's the deal. I work my ass off on my blog. I post 3-5 times a week. Some posts are easy to write. The post I published yesterday was researched out the wazoo and probably took 7 hours of researching, quoting, citing, and writing to get done. Bare minimum, I spend 7 hours a week promoting my blog. Most weeks I probably spend 20+ hours working on it, including learning CSS, reading blog tutorials, networking with other bloggers, taking and editing pictures, planning out my editorial calendar, and writing the blog posts themselves.
I've never worked with an established company before. My stats are not at the level where I can even sign up for companies that pair up bloggers with brands for sponsored blog posts.
Can someone help me figure out the wording to request compensation? Or to get a guaranteed number of social shares in exchange for this blog post? My stats might be good for only being online 4 1/2 months, but a boost from a popular company like Williams-Sonoma might be worth not getting paid. I hate to buy into the "do free work for promotion" thing... but I've already paid bigger bloggers to feature my guest posts on their blog. Promotion is really important, especially to a newbie.
That was long-winded, but I figured I should be clear about my dilemma.