Your blog is going well. You’ve hit your stride in posting, you’re inspired to write, and people are actually reading it! You’re doing so well in fact that you’re being approached to receive products to try out and review on your blog. You gladly accept, receive the product and…. you hate it.
Oh, no! You don’t want to write a glowing review you don’t like, but you also don’t want the advertiser to refuse a final payment or never consider you for a future campaign. What do you do?
Here are a few tips that may help you out of this bind:
Sometimes it’s all in the way that you present it. It’s fine to not like a product (and no reputable brand or agency should require you to lie or to provide a positive review if you’re not feeling it). But, can you find something you do like to go along with what you don’t? If you think the packaging is great, but the product dried out your skin, say so. Maybe it smells nice or you love the color or you can see what they were trying to do even if they didn’t quite get there. Absolutely be honest, but be fair as well.
Feel free to give advice. If there is a way you can see the product being better, post about that. Often, these products are in limited release or they are being tried out with a small audience to see how they are received. Because of this, negative (but constructive) feedback is extremely valuable as it helps the brand improve their offering and makes you a more trusted influencer both with the brand and your audience.
What do country music, skinny jeans, tofu & smart cars have in common?
The answer is that I am not a fan of any of them nor would I be compelled to extol their virtues. Not everyone has the same taste. Some things may be great for someone else, just not for you. It’s all a matter of fit.
If you receive a product that would never interest you in a million years, feel free to share that, but if you can identify a different audience that would appreciate the merits, by all means mention that as well.
When it comes down to it, if you just can’t find anything constructive to say, then you always have the option not to post. These instances are rare, but should they arise, you can never go wrong sending a note to the advertiser letting them know your hesitation and concerns which should allow you to preserve the relationship for the future.