As an event blogger, I receive so many requests to cover events. That’s to be expected. But what PR firms don’t expect is my reply with my fee to cover their event. It’s one thing to invite me to an event as an attendee but it’s another to ask me to “promote” “take photos” “use your hashtag” etc. That’s work for me. And I don’t work without getting paid.
Yet, many PR firms do this as a way to get more “media” coverage for their client.
Bloggers may fall under media but we’re not free labor.
Unlike traditional media that will be paid through ads, subscriptions, sponsors, etc bloggers do not have that option as a way to get paid to cover an event. Our ads, subscriptions, sponsors, etc are for other purposes.
Events are more than showing up, taking some photos, writing a blog post or creating a video. It’s designating time to do that, paying for parking if necessary, editing those photos, creating captions for those photos for social media, time to write the blog post, time to write the script for the video, editing the video, create a schedule of posts to promote before, during and/or after the event, maybe buying a new outfit if we don’t want to be seen in the same thing, hiring a babysitter if we’re a parent and so much more.
This is why when PR firms reach out to paid event bloggers like myself and receive a reply, I have no hesitation. All that time, effort and energy for your client’s event is time away from money-making activities for me to pay my bills. Covering events is one of my services, therefore, a fee is attached to that work.
The reason I feel bloggers are becoming the new unpaid interns for PR firms is it’s so easy to find willing bloggers to work for free. They don’t understand the economics of putting in all that work for free just yet. And PR firms aren’t going to mess up a good thing by explaining they could and should actually be paid.
Like I stated before, bloggers may be seen as media but we are so much more than traditional media. We promote your event beforehand, light up social media during and push people to continue to engage afterwards. Traditional media doesn’t do that. I wrote about this 3 years ago and it still boggles my mind that some PR firms don’t put in their budget to actually pay bloggers.
After 7 years of doing this, I’m not anywhere near intern status so my time, work, and audience are not for free. Nor are a lot of event bloggers out there going to keep working for free. So PR firms, please, for the love of God tell your clients they will need to add a line item called, bloggers. That way you have a budget when you reach out to work with us.
You get paid and so do we.
We’re both trying to help your client’s event be as successful as possible.