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Monday, August 22, 2016

Lesson Learned: Instagram Advertising Gone Wrong


Many bloggers accept free products in exchange for a review on their website or an advertising post. Like myself, I've gotten plenty of freebies from companies where some would say something along the lines of: we'll send you this if you post this for us.

Well, I just learned my lesson. 



My Story 

I prefer receiving money in exchange for ads, but sometimes I'll accept a freebie. Since blogging, I've received free clothes, sunglasses and books. 

Back in May, I posted several posts of a hair company to promote their upcoming hair events in exchange for free hair bundles. Another blogger that I'm cool with told me about it and asked if I would like to do it. I said okay, even though I haven't rocked weaves in over a year. 

So, I get the videos to post on my Instagram page which needed to be advertised a lot for this company's event. Anytime my blogger friend posted one, I reposted their caption and video. 

Mind you, all of these ads would have added up to several hundred dollars, but instead, I agreed to post in exchange for hair. 


I exchanged numbers with the person in charge of the company and we talked on the phone. I gave them the address of where to ship the hair and everything. She also said I could attend their hair event in New Jersey for free, but I didn't go due to being busy. 

Like two months go by and I realized, I never received the hair. I told the blogger and I DM'd the company. They apologized and said they had me on a list to have the hair shipped in May and would double check. 

I gave them the same address that I sent the first time. Still nothing after like a month, I DM'd them earlier today and said: "I still didn't receive anything, that's fine. I guess it's free advertising, lol." 

Now, I'm over it, but I feel used and a little dumb. 


My advice to bloggers who advertise and accept free products

- Get the product first before posting and advertising it. 

- The same goes with paid advertisements. Make sure the money is cleared first before posting. 

- Make sure you actually like the product and test it out before posting, make sure it's safe, etc. Your followers trust your opinion, don't blow their trust over a couple of freebies or some dollars. 

- This is your business, don't let people take advantage of you.

- Remember, it's okay to say no. Don't feel like you have to do someone a favor because they're cool or because someone is asking you or because you feel sorry for them or because they may be your friend. 

This is business and YOUR brand, 
stand your ground and protect it! 





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