How to set your sponsored content rates | The business of blogging

Thursday, August 11, 2016

As a blogger, one of the hardest things to figure out is how much you should be charging for your content. Companies are often unwilling to pay bloggers unless they set their own rates, and in an industry that’s very closed-doors about how much everyone is charging, it can be difficult to figure out where your ballpark should even be (much less the exact figure that you want to aim for).

Earlier this year, I surveyed a number of fashion, beauty, and lifestyle bloggers to anonymously find out how much they were charging. Here are those results.

how much to charge for a sponsored post

Montly unique visits average beauty blog

Average monthly visitors for the blogs surveyed.

Background information

First off, if you missed the rest of my Business of Blogging series, you can view the first few posts here, or at the links below!

How to start a beauty blog (and what to expect once you do!)

How to monetize your blog, partner with brands, & more: The do’s and don’t of blogging

Additionally, I wanted to share a bit of information about the bloggers who took this survey before we begin. Most of the respondents were beauty bloggers (84%), and on average, they posted 2-3 times each week. 

The number of unique visits and page views that these blogs saw varied greatly, but they averaged 14 000 monthly unique visitors and 29 000 monthly page views. 63% of bloggers mostly waited to be approached by brands, and there was no significant difference noted in the rates secured by bloggers who took the initiative to approach brands.

making money blogging tips

Sponsored posts

For a single sponsored post, most bloggers are charging about $250. A further breakdown follows:

  • 100 000+ monthly visitors: $1200-$1800 per post. Average $1500.
  • 10 k to 90 k monthly visitors: $60-$500 per post. Average: $280.
    • Instagram: $15-200 per post. Average: $100.
  • 50 to 9000 monthly visitors: $10-400 per post. Average: $125.
    • Instagram: $24-$150 per post. Average: $45.

Within each of these tiers, much of the discrepancies can be explained by bloggers’ Instagram follower counts. With almost no exceptions, those with over 15k followers on Instagram were the ones commanding the upper range of each spectrum, and those with under 10k followers were charging the lower end of each.

Blog stats aside, here’s how everyone’s Instagram numbers broke down when examined on their own:

  • Under 3k followers: $15-$100 per post. Average $30.
  • 3k to 50k followers: $25-$400 per post. Average $125. *Note: this category’s data set was all over the place. Outliers aside, most bloggers in this category charge $100 per post. 

How to set a sponsored post rate instagram

Sponsored content rates vs monthly visitors

Sponsored post rates vs. unique monthly visits. Note: outliers were excluded from this scatter plot because frankly, the rest of the data looked like one big lump with them included. For the full range of the survey, please read the textual content of this post.

Blog sponsorships and banner ads

Far fewer bloggers offered blog sponsorships and banner ads than sponsored posts, but there were more than I had expected! 26% of bloggers offered sponsorships and 34% of bloggers offered banner ads, with sponsorship fees being consistently higher than banner ads.

  • Over 10 000 monthly visitors: Average sponsorships $300/month, ads $50/month.
  • Under 10 000 monthly visitors: Average sponsorships $100/month, ads $35/month.

Event coverage

For event coverage, most bloggers either charged nothing or charged around $200. 

Because only 20% of respondents included data for this section, I will not be drawing any additional conclusions.

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how to charge for event coverage blogging guide

Overall conclusions & tips for getting a better rate

I’m hoping that these averages will help provide you with a starting block for how much you can be charging if a brand requests specific content or coverage from you, but they’re not at all a definitive guide.

One of the things that I learned while going through these rates was that nowadays, sponsored content rates are no longer only set by page views. Social media is a key determining factors in rate-setting, and a while a difference of 10k page views has no impact on a blogger’s rate at all, a difference of 10k Instagram followers can change the rate that they command by hundreds of dollars.

Sponsored post rates beauty blog

Instagram stats had the most significant impact on how much bloggers were able to charge, and Bloglovin’ stats seemed to have no influence at all. However, there was one big predictor for who saw the most visitors and those who made the most cash: the top five bloggers surveyed all posted daily or multiple times a day.

In conclusion? If you’re looking to make blogging a living, focus on growing your social stats – primarily Instagram and YouTube; not so much Facebook or Twitter. From there, stay honest, and make sure to update your blog daily if possible!

What are your tips for rate-setting and sponsored content? Leave your do’s and don’ts in the comments below!

Image sources: (1) (2

Libertine Fragrance Soft Woods EdT review, photos

Monday, August 8, 2016

Libertine soft woods roll on review photos

The product: Libertine Fragrance Soft Woods Eau de Toilette Roll-On

One of my favourite fragrances got a bit of a facelift recently, so I thought I’d take a moment to share it with all of you while it was fresh in my mind. Soft Woods (like the rest of the Libertine line) now comes in clear glass and a beautiful white box, but the scent and formula remain the same.

Libertine fragrance Soft Woods review photos

A little bit about Libertine: I’ve been trying my best to support local and indie businesses over the past couple of years, and Libertine Fragrance is basically the pinnacle of that–especially for me, because they’re based right here in Edmonton. Josh, the brand’s founder, is a forester turned designer who got hooked on perfume, and he now blends unisex fragrances right from the cozy comfort of his home.

(And yes, he still has a very forest-y beard. Hipster boys would weep in its wake.)

All of Libertine’s products are made by hand in small batches, and Josh uses a mix of high-quality synthetic and natural ingredients diluted in fractionated coconut oil or perfumers alcohol. Their blends are 60%-80% natural and are vegan and cruelty free, and all of the brand’s printing is done locally by a family-owned Edmonton business!

Edmonton indie Libertine Fragrance review, photos

The scent itself: I sniffed my way through the entire Libertine range at last year’s winter Royal Bison, but Soft Woods was the one scent that really stuck with me. It has this really guttural, sexy vibe to it, and it just envelops you in scent with the slightest touch of the roll-on.

Key notes and origins: Natural balsam fir (Canada), juniper (Hungary), black pepper (India), rose de mai (Egypt), frankincense (Oman), and bourbon vanilla (India). Synthetic, cruelty-free musk.

Indie soft woods fragrance review

What makes Soft Woods so special is that it’s sultry in a really natural kind of way – like hi, hello, I sleep in a pile of moss and everything I own is encrusted in gold and rubies. Small birds help me get dressed in the morning and my best friend is a cheetah. It’s woody, sweet, and floral, with an almost acrid edge that makes it alluring and risqué instead of headache-inducing or overpowering.

Basically, Soft Woods smells like what Tom Ford Black Orchid would have smelled like if it had been made for hipsters instead of ladies of the night. Both are gorgeous; one has far more veneer.

Soft woods review - Libertine Fragrance, edmonton

The verdict?

Soft Woods is a beautiful blend of woods, rose, and vanilla, and it smells like crisp winter evenings in utter silence. It’s one of those rare fragrances that hits it out of the park in every category, with a really genuine founder, excellently sourced ingredients, and the sillage of the roll-on is perfect for catching one’s nose and encouraging them to lean in for the full effect (nudge nudge).

Availability: $48 CAD at Libertine Fragrance and through these Canadian stockists. Ships internationally.

PS: If you’re addicted to Rahua products and Palo Santo wood (and really, who wouldn’t be), you NEED to try Libertine’s Leche De Palo Santo Linen & Body Spray ($32) as well!

Keep reading! »

Charlotte Tilbury Tell Laura Hot Lips, Kiss ‘n’ Tell Lip Cheat | Luxe lipstick for a great cause

Friday, August 5, 2016

Charlotte Tilbury Hot Lips review

The products: Charlotte Tilbury Hot Lips Matte Revolution Lipstick in Tell Laura, Lip Cheat Lip Liner in Kiss ‘n’ Tell

Alright, so firstly: I still haven’t found it in my heart to swatch these two gorgeous products. I will get to it eventually, but I look absolutely terrible in orange-based tones, so it’s been really hard for me to motivate myself to ruin the perfect finishes! To see what it looks like on a (truly) wide range of faces, check out its Charlotte Tilbury product page.

Secondly? If you’re not following me on Snapchat, go do that now!! I’ll be chronicling my belated birthday plans for all of today (I still haven’t the slightest idea what my partner has planned), and I usually have lots of Tuna photos & puppy videos up there. All in all, it should be a pretty good time.

Alright. I’m off to get this post scheduled and get to bed, so I’ll leave you with these Tilbury photos! Enjoy.

Availability: Hot Lips Lipsticks $32 USD/$38 CAD; Lip Cheat Lip Liner $22 USD/$27 CAD.

Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat Kiss n Tell

Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Tell Laura review

“Inspired by 12 of the world’s most mesmerizing women, Charlotte Tilbury has created 12 hot lipstick shades which celebrate the beauty, style and power of each namesake celebrity. 

Charlotte Tilbury will donate $2 from the sale of each Hot Lips lipstick for the first two months of sale to the Women For Women International charity, an organization which actively works to better the lives of women around the world who are affected by extremism and conflict occurring within their country.”

Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat Kiss n Tell packaging

Keep reading! »

Burberry Lip & Cheek Bloom in Poppy: swatches, review, photos

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Burberry lip and cheek bloom review photos swatches

The product: Burberry Lip & Cheek Bloom in Poppy No. 9

Alright, so I don’t know how I left this Burberry blush sitting in my stash completely unswatched for months (that’s a lie, I know exactly how; it’s because it looked so pristine and pretty and I couldn’t bring myself to do it), but I finally swatched it.

And dudes. It was NOT what I was expecting.

Burberry lip review poppy cheek bloom swatches

As a blush: This Lip & Cheek Bloom is springy, mousse-y, and sheer. I was expecting a solid-feeling silicone gel (because this formula is heavy on the ‘cones), but for some silly reason, I saw that glossy finish and immediately thought, “Hmm, I guess it’s going to be slick.”

And I mean, I guess “slick” isn’t totally incorrect. But this is far from your standard gel blush: it’s more like a dense little cloud of powdery delight. It’s sheer and so easy to blend, and while the shade isn’t the best for me–it definitely looks a little warm and ruddy on my olive complexion–I think it works. It’s a classic colour, you know? Like a classy rendition of primary red.

Burberry Poppy lip cheek bloom swatches review

Burberry Poppy No. 9 Lip & Cheek Bloom swatches (heavily/lightly, artificial lighting)

As a lip colour: The Burberry Lip & Cheek Bloom formula, if you can stand silicones, is nice as a blush. Where it really shines, though, is as a lip colour.

It’s very strange to see a satin product that’s this sheer, and even though the Lip & Cheek Bloom formula isn’t hydrating, I really like it. Its sheer, satin finish is really unique, and Poppy instantly gives my lips a “popsicle stained” effect. It also layers overtop of any other lip colour to transform the finish into a soft matte (à la Smashbox Insta-Matte, which totally lied when it said “matte”), and looks beautiful overtop of a brown lipstick.

Seriously. Throw Poppy over any ’90s browns that you’re regretting buying & you’ll end up with the most gorgeous deep pink ever.

Burberry kip cheek bloom poppy review

The verdict?

While I think a shade like Rose or Purple Tulip probably would have been better suited to my makeup aesthetic, I surprised myself by really enjoying the French-made Burberry Lip & Cheek Bloom formula. Its satin finish is cloud-like, very blendable, and uniquely sheer, and it creates a beautiful, blooming lip or cheek!

Availability: $30 USD/$33 CAD at Nordstrom, Sephora, Burberry (US), and Hudson’s Bay (CA).

Keep reading! »

Contour & Sway with Rodial and NYX Cosmetics | A bright-lipped makeup look!

Friday, July 29, 2016

Rodial NYX makeup look

Every time I post a makeup look, it’s like, “Hi, I know it’s been a while, but surprise!”

This NYX Liquid Suede Cream Lipstick was a pretty big surprise too, at least for me. I just finished being disappointed by the brand’s Soft Matte Lipstick in Transylvania, so when I pulled out Sway to finish off this Rodial contouring feature, I was really surprised by how lovely it was.

I haven’t given it a day-long test just yet, but it feels awesome – thick and creamy and dense, with the opacity and finish to match.

NYX Liquid Suede cream lipstick swatch Sway

NYX Liquid Suede Cream Lipstick swatch in LSCL 06 Sway (Emprise)

Rodial makeup look motd products used

Products used

I used Rodial for my base, of course, and their Contouring Powder, Illuminating Powder, and South Beach Blusher on my cheeks. Their lightest foundation matches my summer tan really well, and the contour is nice (if a bit subtle). Then, I threw on my standard eye base/brow combo of the moment: Clarins Waterproof Liquid Eyeshadow and Annabelle Skinny Brow Liner.

Clarins Rosewood new 2016 4 colour eyeshadow palette review swatches makeup

Clarins 4-Colour Eyeshadow Palette in 02 Rosewood, Marcelle Double Precision Liner in Black, and Annabelle BigShow Waterproof Mascara

To give a little colour to the eye, I used the brand new Clarins 4-Colour Eyeshadow Palette in 02 Rosewood ($43 USD), which looks… Surprisingly unlike the old Eye Quartet Mineral Palette in 03 Rosewood ($42 USD). I’m not sure why they didn’t just give it a new name – the near-identical packaging and labelling make things a little bit confusing!

(The mascara is Annabelle BigShow Waterproof ($9.95 CAD), which is also new to me. I liked it, but not as much as their Expandable Mascara.)

NYX Sway Liquid Suede review motd makeup look

And, finally, there was that NYX Liquid Suede lipstick. The formula smells a little bit like paint in the tube, but it’s actually super lovely: it has a velvety matte finish and applies so easily that I didn’t even need a lip brush to apply it. I’m kinda dying to add a couple other shades to my makeup collection!

What’s your favourite bold lip colour range?

Rodial Instaglam Contouring Powder 03, South Beach Blusher swatches, review, photos

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Rodial makeup review 2016 new launches

The products: Rodial Instaglam Contouring Powder in 03 and Blusher in South Beach

I’ve been using a ton of Rodial in my everyday makeup recently (mostly the new Rodial Airbrush Make-Up and Airbrush Concealer, which I LOVE), so I have one more little review for you guys! And, of course, a makeup look with a nice, bright lip – it’ll be up on Friday.

Actual Friday, not “oops sorry today is Tuesday.” Seriously. I already have it drafted and everything.

Rodial instaglam contouring powder 03 review swatches photos

Rodial Instaglam Compact Deluxe Contouring Powder ($57 USD)

I began my testing, of course, with the much-lauded Rodial Contouring Powder ($57 USD). The shade is great for light skintones (very balanced, and definitely not too warm), and Rodial released a new contouring shade this year to fit a wider range of faces.

However: Rodial’s Contouring Powder Dark is a solid medium at best, and saying that it “works well for dark skin tones” feels like an act of exclusion to me. The formula of Rodial powders is very sheer and the line’s contour shades are very light, and they are simply not designed with ethnic skin in mind.

» If you’re a POC or you want to support a brand who designs makeup for ALL makeup wearers, check out the contour powders offered by NYX, Anastasia, Black Up, or Kat Von D instead.

Rodial packaging contouring face sculptor and definer swatches review photos

Rodial Deluxe Contouring Powder review, swatches

Rodial contour, south beach, instaglam highlighter swatches review photos

Rodial 03 Contouring Powder (lightly/heavily), South Beach Blusher, 01 Illuminating Powder swatches – lightly primed skin, indirect sunlight

Rodial blush south beach review photos swatches

Rodial South Beach Blusher review, swatches

Rodial South Beach Blusher ($35 USD)

I didn’t personally have problems with the opacity of the fresh, springy South Beach Blusher ($35 USD), but again, I didn’t love the formula. Like the contour powder, this blush is very sheer. Both of these pressed powders contain a lot of talc and a fair amount of silica (as well as cornstarch in the contour powder), so they kick up some dust and have that slippery-smooth silica feel.

In other words, they blend well, but you can’t build them up. Which means that they’ll never have the ability to make you look awful (even if applied in the dark!), but it doesn’t give them any versatility at all. Even with my fair skin I have to apply two layers of this blush whenever I wear it, and I’ve never been able to get my Rodial contour as dark or sharp as I like it – it just blends itself away.


Rodial makeup new items

The verdict?

I enjoy using these powder products from Rodial, but if I’m being honest… they’re just not as good as the brand’s Airbrush base products. I’d recommend them only in a strictly luxury capacity, and not at all if you have medium to dark skin.

For the price, I am disappointed in the quality of these products. The packaging and luxury “feel” are spot on, but they’re very sheer, and (in my opinion) their ingredients and formula just don’t justify the price tags.

Availability: Rodial, select Shopper’s Drug Mart Boutiques, and Murale.

Keep reading! »

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