Sunday, September 2, 2012

So here's what happened yesterday...

Some of you may know that yesterday was the Adelaide Beauty Conference and I had a ball. I was so impressed by everything I felt compelled to jump on here immediately and post about how happy I am to be part of Adelaide's Blogging Community.

There are so many favourites I have for what happened yesterday (and I will do a proper recap post sharing pics and what happened in the next few days) that I feel like I have "stuff" inside me ready to burst. One of the reasons I got into blogging in the first place was because I have interest in learning more about products and ingredients so I was in my nerdy-heaven yesterday when we had a couple of different companies talking to us about their products and their philosophies.

But what I call the highlight was the blogging panel about monetising blogs featuring some bloggers who had monetised and some who had not. This is a topic I have felt uncomfortable about ever since starting to blog. There is so much finger pointing at people who receive PR samples etc... stating that they cannot be independent. Honestly I don't believe that receiving compensation makes you a sell-out but here is where it gets interesting for me.

After the last conference I did receive a number of samples from PR (which I am very grateful for), the problem was that I FELT COMPELLED to review them in a timely manner and where possible feature them on my blog. I was never asked to do this -but I didn't want to be a PR black hole so I put the pressure on myself. Ultimately because I am not willing to spend the time it takes to post everyday I found that I was no longer posting about stuff I discovered but rather stuff I received - which took the fun out of it for me.

Blogging for me is a release from my stressful and very serious full-time job and because I am the type of person who doesn't like to get something for nothing, PR samples are a bit of a double-edged sword for me. Let me guess - are you thinking did you take a goodie bag yesterday (hypocrite implied) - and the answer would be yes I did. And here's why I did.... It was stated several times that if you did not want to take a bag you did not have to, bags were provided to all bloggers rather than to me specifically and remember why I got into this in the first place - to learn about new things and products.

The products provided to us had a focus on Australian companies and natural products - which is right up my alley. There are several products included in the bags which I have been very interested to try and because I do not have an unlimited budget I may not have been able to try them for some time. I was never made to feel that my taking a bag I have to review them on here but I suspect I will (Sukin provided some items and you know how much I love them for starters).

So where to from here for my little blog - there are enough products provided yesterday to keep me busy for months so I'm not really 'open for business' but what I am is more educated about the monetising issue more generally. I know I will never monetise my blog because of my reason for starting this blog and what blogging means to me in terms of my whole life. But I am not and have not been looking down my nose at bloggers that do either.

The key to blogging for me is hearing your voice and what you have to say about things. If I start to just hear PR lines instead of what you have to say then the reason for me to read your blog has gone. It's the same reason why I don't read magazines. But that is just my personal opinion.

Anyway... I guess I just wanted to share and would be really interested in hearing your thoughts on this topic too. I am genuinely appreciative to the ABC organisers and the panel bloggers for sharing their thoughts on this issue.

Happy Sunday



  1. Great post Jac. I am glad you had a lovely day. The Adelaide bloggers seem to be a wonderful group of ladies!
    I appreciate your comments on monetizing too. I think a lot of people feel the same. I much prefer blogs these day which have a balance of PR/self purchased samples. I don't read "professional" blogs anymore. I much prefer blogs where you can see the writer has a real genuine interest in the products and brands.

    1. I had a ball. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this too :D

  2. Jac this post really hit the head on the nail for me! I run a small blog and I have only recieved products for consideration a few times but I am so wary of it! Whenever I get something for the blog I do feel obliged to mention it, whereas if I had paid for it myself, perhaps I wouldn't! I try to focus my blog on the things that I am using and loving at that moment and I like not having to worry about that side of things.
    I just wanted to let you know that I am with you and I really appreciate you writing about this!

    1. Thanks so much Kimberley - I'm glad to hear I am not the only one too. It can be daunting to work out a comfortable line for yourself around this stuff I think.

  3. Hi Jac, I enjoyed reading your post about this. I get where you are coming from because for me my blog will probably never be a source of income or a way of capturing freebies. I'm in it to share my love for awesome aussie products and inform my readers about why they should try local brands. And I get lazy - I had enough pressure to do things in high school and from my job. I want to do things on my terms - even it that means only blogging once a month. And i'm sure you can when you monetise, but I just don't want to do that right now.


  4. I'm so glad you came, Jac. It really wouldn't have been the same without you. And I'm especially glad to read this as it really makes me happy to see that the aim of our panel was achieved. All we wanted to do was show everybody that there were many paths, none of them set, and that everybody was quite open to doing whatever they wanted. There are no rules to blogging and definitely no rules when it comes to whether or not you should monetize. =)