I have recently started surveying the Bloggers Bazaar newsletter subscribers and a key question that many bloggers have is how to work out what to charge for sponsored posts on their blogs.
I thought I would unpack a little of this today after discussions with many bloggers and research across the Australian blogging network.
There does not appear to be a whole lot of transparency about blogging rates and there are certainly no formal guidelines for what bloggers should charge. This being so it can be very hard to figure out how much to charge a brand that wants to work with you.
The blogging industry in Australia is rapidly growing and brands are quickly realising the influence that bloggers have with niche audiences. Many large companies now target bloggers and work with them in a variety of ways such as through sponsored posts, advertising, brand ambassador positions, giveaways and many other mediums of promotion.
There is a very handy little equation that is used by many bloggers across the globe and it is a great benchmark to start with. Of course every blogger has their own preference for what they wish to charge but there seems to be a trend for many bloggers to charge very low rates and undersell themselves.
THE SPONSORED POST EQUATION
(Time Spent x Hourly Rate) + ( (Average Post Views/1000) x Advertising rate)= $Price per Post
So lets break this down –
Scenario – A fashion company approaches you and wants to do a sponsored post about their new online store that has just launched. This company fits the demographic and feel of your blog so you decide that you work like to work with them. (Quick tip – it’s totally ok to say no if you don’t feel your readers would be interested in hearing about the company involved).
You may be very surprised how long it can actually takes you to put together a sponsored post depending on the brands wishes.
Remember that – time is money.
Hours of work involved – (this is just a guideline and will vary for every person)
- Emailing back and forth with the brand to arrange the post – 30 minutes
- Researching writing the post – 2 hours
- Sourcing suitable images and editing them – 1 hour
- Final edit, posting the blog post and promoting on social media – 30 minutes
Total time spent on the post – 4 hours
*Try and plan this out before you quote your fee. Some sponsored posts will be much more work than others so get as much detail up front about what the brand wants to do and work out how long it will take you before letting them know the cost.
YOUR HOURLY RATE
This is a personal rate that you must decide upon yourself. Take in to account the overheads that you have working from home, the cost of running a blog and how much experience and value you bring to the table. You may decide to start at $50 per hour if you are a relatively new blogger and as you become more experienced and your costs grow you may charge yourself out at $100 per hour.
For this example I will set my rate at $60 per hour. So the equation is looking like this – (4 hours x $60) + ( (Average Post Views/1000) x Advertising rate)= $Price per Post
YOUR AVERAGE POST VIEWS
Next up you will input your page views into the equation. Now this is page views PER POST. So check out your Google Analytics and get an average of your average page views for each blog post and use this figure. (Go to your Analytics home page and click on Content and then Overview and choose a date range of approximately 6 months to one year and look at your average post page views).
For this example I have an average of 800 page views per post on average.
YOUR ADVERTISING RATE
This can be a little tricky to work out, as there are a few things you need to consider. This rate is not equal to a standard sidebar ad. By doing a sponsored post you are offering premium ad space o your site and crafting the content to meet your readers interests and needs. This is of higher value than a basic sidebar ad.
You can look further into this by checking out your Google Analytics and looking at your unique page views, unique blog post views and click-through rates for your sidebar ads (If you have this service set up). This will give you a good idea of the value of your blog post content as opposed to your sidebar advertising.
For this example I have chosen to value the advertising space of a sponsored post at $70. (My sidebar ads range from $30-$40)
So here is how the equation is shaping up so far – (4 hours x $60) + ( 0.8) x $70 = $Price per Post
THE FINAL ANSWER!
Hopefully I have not lost you, it really is not complicated I promise!
This is what I would charge for the scenario outlined above –
($240) + ($56) = $296 for the Sponsored Post
Please note that this is a guideline and a great one that I have used in the past when working with brands. What you decide to charge yourself out at (Your Hourly Rate) and your Advertising Rate is totally up you.
The brand may say no and wish to negotiate with you which is not a bad thing but if you feel they are not valuing your work and what you can offer than just say no.
There are a few other common formulas that bloggers use such as –
Number of page views + Number of twitter followers ÷ page rank number x $ .01 ÷ 2 = your approximate sponsored post rate.
Charging $25 for ever 1,000 monthly page views that you receive on your website. This means that if you blog gets 10,000 page views each month, you can command a rate of $250 per post.
BE UPFRONT ABOUT YOUR SPONSORED POST GUIDELINES
When working with a brand make sure that you are upfront in your initial communication about your sponsored post guidelines. This could include how many words the post will contain, how many images and links will appear in the post, when it will be published and on what social media platforms you will promote it.
Some bloggers also have a guideline that a company must purchase an advertising space on their sidebar to be able to take part in a sponsored post so consider if this is right for your blog.
LASTLY – BE TRANSPARENT WITH YOUR AUDIENCE
Be upfront and transparent with your audience that the post they are reading is a sponsored post. This will give you credibility and trust with your readers and is by far the ethical thing to do.
Sources – Wooden Spoon Kitchen, Nuffnang, The Remarkables Group, Google Analytics, The Blog Herald
Image Source – image edited
I would love to hear from you and what formula you use or if you are interested in trying this one out.