Anyone who has followed my writings for at least one year knows where I stand when it comes to brands being unwilling to pay tech bloggers for services. Should you be new on these streets and so be on the dark about it, I call it BS. Pardon my French. Every person who offers a service deserves their pay. Today, however, I am here to call out bad behaviour on the part of some of our bloggers (and influencers too).
I have been around far longer than any other active tech blogger in Nigeria. I was there in the early days when none of the barely five of us was getting business from brands. And I have heard tech bloggers complain about lack of patronage. Eventually, things began to change. I was there when the doors began to open.
Considering that tech bloggers have been crying for due and just compensation for years, one would expect that when opportunities come, they would seize them and go all out to prove that they deserve them. Unfortunately, it isn’t always the case.
Every now and then, brand managers and digital agencies rant about how unreliable some bloggers are. Even worse, I got to see some of it up close. It leaves me wondering if tech bloggers are really ready for business.
So, dear bloggers (especially those of us from the tech world), I have a few insights for you if you are interested in building a lasting business from what you do.
First, when a brand pays you, you owe them. You owe them time and resources. You owe them results. This isn’t a game anymore. They have become your client. That means there are obligations on both sides. On yours, you need to deliver whatever you were engaged for. If your client asks you for a report of the activities you carried out for them, they should not have to chase you around to get it.
In my over 12 years of tech blogging, no brand has had to chase me or my team around. From Nokia, to Etisalat, to TECNO, Infinix, Ntel and others, we have stretched ourselves to uphold integrity. I tell my team that it must not happen. It is not an option.
It is very bad taste for a client who has paid you for a service to have to chase you around for a report or for an account of your stewardship. Do not become the person/blogger/influencer known to be unreliable. Word will go round about you and it will only be a matter of time before your business suffers.
Second (and this has changed among the leading tech bloggers, but the newer ones need to learn it), be presentable at formal occasions. In the many years I have been attending events as a blogger, my eyes have seen glorious things.
I have seen tech bloggers arrive at a formal occasion looking like they were off to see a neighbour down the street. Dress well. It doesn’t have to be expensive. You do not have to put on a tie or jacket. The important thing is to look decent. Being an eye sore at a formal event is very bad taste. You will be treated like trash and it will be your fault. You want respect? Be respectful of your clients or hosts by appearing at their show/event in a decent way.
If you want to be successful at running your tech blog as a business, please please, please, be a person of integrity and do not have your client chasing you around after paying you money. And by all that is good and proper, dress well, look well, and smell well (yes; that too).
I do not know what obtains in other climes, but tech blogging in Nigeria is a hard vocation. We cannot afford to to now be seen as undependable.
Too many tech blogs start and fall by the way. Do not set yourself up to be one of them. Build a sustainable business by pursuing integrity and building a good image for yourself.