They say the devil wears Prada, well, the devil can just as easily be wearing Primark. There are millions of blogs floating around the Intervese, with hundreds more starting up everyday. That’s a lot of competition and it’s no surprise that some people may cut corners to get ahead, or let jealousy get the better of them. Here are my Seven Deadly Sins of Blogging and why you should avoid them.
1. Lying About Statistics.
Brands and PR reps are under a lot of pressure to get results & will often take what you tell them about yourself with face value. Smaller brands are particularly vulnerable because they don’t always understand the economics of social media and hand their products out to anyone who will take them, or looks professional enough.The internet has made it possible for anyone to look like a super-star, but this may not always be the case.
Bare in mind that if brands trust you enough to send you something and they don’t get the results they want, they’re unlikely to work with you again.
Just be honest, there are many smaller companies that are starting up who can’t reach out to the bigger bloggers due to costs involved. If you have a reasonable following and are seen to be working hard to build one, that’s where you can come in and shine if you’re not quite an internet star yet.
In any case, bigger companies have endless streams of money at their disposal, take some time to help the little guys out while you’re still trying to get to the top yourself. The little guy can become the big guy tomorrow and they’ll remember you for helping them out.
It is often said that imitation is the best form of flattery, but quite frankly, I’d be annoyed if someone started passing off my ideas as their own.
I think it’s fair to say we’ve all felt inspired by someone, and there’s nothing wrong with looking to more successful people to get ideas, but blatantly ripping off/stealing someone else work will land you in hot water and make you look like a fraud.
3. Stealing Other Peoples Pictures.
I’ll put it down to laziness but there seems to be a trend of bloggers stealing other bloggers pictures & passing them off as their own.
Remember that other people’s work is protected by copy-right law, don’t get into trouble because you can’t be bothered to put in the work and produce original content yourself.
Bigger bloggers in particular often use professional photographers, so you could be putting yourself at risk of major legal action. Do not risk it.
4. Being A Mean Girl/Boy.
Little Miss/Mr Perfect Pants. You’ve probably met them at an event. They think they’re too big for everyone, they bad mouth others, throw shady looks & only speak to people who they deem worthy of their precious air. Goodness forbid you should wear a nicer looking outfit than them – the ultimate crime in their eyes.
Jokes aside, remember this and remember it clearly: you never know who you’re talking to.
One night I was in the club with my friends and there was an older man sitting by himself. He seemed lonely & out of place, so feeling bad for him I went over and introduced myself. After a small chat (and feeling uncomfortable because I realised he was on drugs) I went back to my place, thinking nothing of the exchange. Later on in the night, someone came over to me and asked what I had been talking about with the gentlemen.
The person quickly realised that I had no idea who the guy was and informed me that Mr Lonely was actually a multi-millionaire and owner of a large store in London!! A quick check on Google confirmed this. See – money really can’t buy you happiness – and in the case of this gentleman, friends either.
Asides from his first name, at no point in our conversation did he mention exactly who he was and I didn’t care to ask what he did as I felt it wasn’t my business, but can you imagine if I had been rude to that man, or sat pointing and laughing at him like some of the other on-lookers who were there that night? People, especially powerful ones, never forget a face that scorned them and they won’t necessarily be wearing the shiniest outfit at the party, so get into the habit of treating everyone with the same respect you’d expect to receive.
The drunken, lonely, shabby looking guy may not be who you think, so be careful who you’re rude to on the way up, because you’ll meet them on the way down and they’ll make sure to stomp on you with their shiny Louboutins.
5. Getting Too Big For Your Boots.
I’m sad to say that I have had some less than nice experiences with some of the mega bloggers/Youtubers and I’ve had many other people tell me similar stories.
It’s absolutely astonishing to me that any blogger could grow a movie star ego, and quite frankly, even movie stars should stay humble.
Yes it’s nice to have brands lavish you with gifts, invite you to parties and fashion shows, but keep your feet on the ground.
People go into burning buildings to save lives, perform life-altering surgeries, look after the sick, yet I rarely hear these people, who contribute so much to our society, boasting about their efforts, and they’re certainly not given mountains of free stuff for it. If anything, they’re grossly underpaid. It’s a privilege to do what you do as a blogger and more so if you’re able to do it as a living.
Also remember that popularity/ fame is fleeting. You may be the star of the moment now, but there’s always someone coming behind you to take your place and audiences have a habit of moving on once they’ve seen enough of you.
Even bigger bloggers & Youtubers are struggling to get views and hits because the blogging space has become so saturated and newer faces are entering the market all the time.
There’s nothing more ugly & unfashionable than someone who’s gotten too big for themselves, so keep it real.
6.Not blogging regularly enough.
Blogging is a commitment.
So few people realise this, they think they can just start tomorrow and that brands, followers, traffic and fame will come rolling in. This just isn’t true. It takes time, patience and dedication. Giving your readers regular and engaging content is vital to your success, if you don’t, they’ll simply move onto someone who will.
One post a week is a good start, but as you become more popular, you’ll need to start posting more regularly.
7.Not blogging about an item you’ve been given.
You go to an event, get a bunch of things and they never see the flash of a camera. Not committing to blogging about brands that gift you not only affects your reputation, but the reputation of bloggers as a whole.
I’m seeing this more and more and if it continues, expect that bloggers will be slowly squeezed out of the marketing conversation and brands to go back to traditional forms of promotion.
If you didn’t like an item and you’d rather not hurt the brands name, be honest with them.Tell them you didn’t like the product and that you don’t do negative reviews.
On a final note, reputation is everything, so guard it with your life, because once it slips, it can be difficult to build back again.
Which other blogging sins have you seen others commit?