Monday, 27 June 2016

Can You Trust Bloggers?

Can You Trust Bloggers

Hi guys

This is in no way a post about hating bloggers, I am a blogger and I enjoy writing posts whenever I get the chance to do so. I am not 100% dedicated or super serious about it but I really enjoy it. For me, it’s supposed to be a hobby. I have nothing against any of the amazing bloggers who have made this a part/full time job, more power to you! I don’t get arsey about analytics, page views, how many followers I have, how many have unfollowed me or media packages but I do care that my readers trust my judgement and like my posts so I decided to write this post about trusting what bloggers have to as well as a few other things that came up while I was typing haha. 

After spending the day looking through reviews, I began to ask myself, are these bloggers being honest? I dont let the fact that it says "sponsored post" or "this item was sent to me for review" deter me from reading it or trusting it, but I did question if bloggers were being paid/gifted to give positive reviews rather than give their honest opinion.  I have never questioned it before as I like to think all of the reviews I read are truthful. I have bought numerous items on the back of what a blogger has to say and I almost always agree with them. I hate thinking bad of anyone, and I get that they may not want to risk ruining a business relationship or damage their reputation but surely all companies want positive and negative feedback to ensure their products are the best they can be. I just always remember that if someone is willing to buy a product based on what you are saying then make sure you are giving as much information as possible so your readers can decide if its for them or not. 
I understand everyone has a difference of opinion and a product that may work on me may not necessarily work on you but it is mandatory to be as honest as possible. This is just common courtesy and it gives readers the respect they deserve. I try to be as truthful as possible. If I dont like something, I say that. If I love it, then I say that. Sometimes it isnt as black and white as that as you may like one aspect but hate another. Just be as honest as you can. Sometimes I speak highly of something and then a few weeks/months down the line I have gone off it. That doesn’t mean I wasn’t being honest, it just means I have moved on. I am a beauty blogger after all. Its my hobby and job to an extent to review products. I am also a slut when it comes to products as I want to try everything so I can give you an idea of what’s good on my skin (oily, sometimes dry) as it may also benefit you. That means I may rave about something and then you won’t see me using/talking about it again but does that mean I was lying? No, it means I moved on to something else in the hopes that it’s better or different. If I need something new, mostly skincare, I go back and read old blog posts to find out what worked for me and then buy it again. Thats right, I read my own reviews haha and I am often surprised at what I had to say. I wonder why I never bought certain items again but I now know it’s because I am a skincare slut ha-ha. 

This is now going into rantville. Would you trust a blogger who copies others work? I have a huge problem with bloggers who quite literally copy and paste another bloggers work, change a few lines and then don’t even link back to the original content. Dont get me wrong, sometimes I use other peoples photos, especially when I have gone back to fix links in old posts and my pictures are horrendous but I always, and I mean always link back to the original content by writing "Source" under the photo and linking website. I hope others do the same as it lets your readers view someone elses opinion and see where the original picture came from. 


The amount of time and effort that goes into one blog post is quite astonishing. I didnt realise this back in the good old days when I just read blog posts but think about it. You take the time to set up your camera, tripod, lights, backgrounds & product placement. Then you have to edit your pictures, make sure they are sized correctly, make sure they are clear, bright & eye catching. Then comes the writing. The review is the most precious, well for me anyway, as it should explain what the product is, what the company says it does compared to what it actually does (i.e. your findings) and also what is in it as people may be allergic to certain products. I like to look at reviews to see if other bloggers experienced something different and link it to give my readers a different view. Then you grab links and prices for readers so it’s easy for them to head over to buy or look. Once this is done, then it’s time for scheduling/publishing the post. Scheduling tweets. Posting on Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook and may more social platforms. I think you will agree it’s already quite a lot at this point so for someone to copy and paste all of this hard work is downright disgusting. I totally understand why some bloggers get upset by this but trust me I have read a few posts in my time which have been carbon copies of others so its more common than you think.

Sponsored posts are a big one to get people talking aren’t they, I usually keep out of all the agg on Twitter but  I have noticed more and more people talking about bloggers being paid to talk about a certain product or to talk about a company. Most recently Zoe London spoke out about this and I totally agree with what she said. I have nothing, and I mean absolutely nothing against bloggers being paid, hell we all got bills to pay but I do have a problem with liars or people deliberately misleading their readers to make a few bucks. Just look at Naomi Campbell and Scott Disick on Instagram recently where they have copied and pasted the PRs message straight into the caption ha-ha, I find that bloody hilarious! This could have been a publicity stunt for both company and celebrity but it really makes you think doesn’t it? 

I carried out a poll on twitter asking people if they believed bloggers who were paid and gave a glowing review. My results were as follows:
No 14%
Yes 14%
Depends 50%
Dont read it if its an ad 22% 

I then asked who they trusted more when it comes to reviews and the results were as follows:
Famous Bloggers 0%
Small Bloggers 83%
Magazine Articles 17%
Celebrities 0%

These results astounded me, I honestly believed that big blogs would have been top of the polls as they have so much more sway with the public. But I do agree with small bloggers being more trustworthy as thats who I look to when I want an honest review. I dont really believe hype when it comes from celebrities, the amount of faces you see promoting brands that you know are shit is quite unbelievable but for now, I am more inclined to believe  smaller blogs. 

The one thing I am noticing more and more of is bloggers/youtubers etc. being sent products weeks/months before the official release date to get their readers/followers intrigued and all hyped up. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this, it’s a perfectly good marketing strategy but I do have a problem with the majority of bloggers stating these products are amazing and when you order it on their good word, the product is actually a piece of shit. Again, I understand that everyone has different needs and a different experience with products but when you see a larger quantity of "smaller" bloggers who actually buy these products using their own money, stating the products arent good, then surely, you have to trust that. 

I suppose you will always find out if a product is good when you actually buy it but who the hell has money to burn. If you are unsure, then go a wander around the shops and collect samples. Counters always have samples and if they refuse, you don’t really want to be giving these people your money do you? I love doing this in my local Debenhams as the staff are usually friendly and hand out samples like candy.

I feel I have to say again, this post isn’t directed to anyone in particular. I normally stay out of online fights and usually catch the jist at the end of the night so if something has happened more recently and it coincides with this post, then it is purely coincidental. I am all for bloggers, there is more than enough space for everyone but as I said, I do have a problem with people being dishonest to their readers.

Do you believe bloggers?
Do you believe big or small blogs?
Would you buy something purely because a blogger said it was amazing?
Would you be more inclined to believe a celebrity when it comes to products?

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  1. I trust some bloggers but not others. In general I don't take a sponsored post as a literal review of a product, but more as a source of information. I think that it's pretty easy to spot which bloggers are truthful and which ones are not. The former share negative reviews too and discuss the positive as well as negative aspects of a product. The latter use the words "gorgeous" and "amazing" in every sentence!


  2. I think this is a general problem of the blogging community. I usually don't read "big" blogs as they get paid to say what the brand wants them to say. Got zero trust in those. Smaller bloggers depends on the way they've structured and reviewed the product. Let's say I trust a comprehensive review with pro and cons more then a review with one picture and three lines under it that pretty much all go the same (amazing, gergeous ect ect).

    Caz | Style Lingua

    1. Yeah, Im the same Carolin. I need the review to have more substance than "its amazing". Tell me why its amazing, is there anything wrong with it etc? xx

  3. First of all I end up skipping a lot of sponsored posts period, but the ones I end up reading I tend to take with a grain of salt. Of course they don't HAVE to write a positive review after being sent the product, but if they don't? I imagine it doesn't look good because why would a company pay them to promote a negative review? The company is expecting positive and if you take the product and accept payment that is typically what the blogger feels obligated to they usually do. It's definitely sketchy. All the bloggers can't love everything that much!

    1. No i agree Cece, I just find myself not knowing what blogs to trust nowadays as its all 'business'. I want to know the pros and cons of a products rather than hearing its great with no reasons why or just a quick run down of the product rather than an indepth review.

  4. I agree with your headline and you did provide an interesting read. I have a background in marketing and I have an aversion to disagree with any form of copied content.

    Personally I don't trust bloggers these day because so many of us are ill informed about whatever it is we would like to talk about and post general sh*t. I've fallen victim to this myself - I'm no angel.

    From my point of view, if you want to follow a blog, only follow people that are educated enough and have the accreditation's to prove it, without placing too much trust in mainstream media companies.

    You've given me a great idea for my next blog post though! (of course, I'll link back to your blog as a kind of attribution :) )

    1. Couldnt agree more! Im no angel either, its just my opinions on products etc but I like to think I am reading peoples real opinions rather than positive thoughts because they are being paid!
      Thanks for the comment Calvin :) xx


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