How to create content a brand will love to use

If you’re new to Fashion To Follow, you may not know this, but aside from blogging, professionally, I do social media at a Fortune 50 and have been doing so since 2012. I’ve seen social networks change and blogging evolve and having seen many bloggers reach out to work with us, I wanted to write this post to give you insight into what you can do when creating content for a brand. Here are 6 tips for creating content a brand will love to use.

1) Be genuine
Let your voice and style shine through. A brand’s desire to work with you signifies that they like your style and trust you to create content in the voice that you have already established. Take that as a compliment don’t be afraid to let your genuine voice shine through.

2) Create excellent content
A brand is going to look for professional, quality content that they’d be proud to associate with. This means great photos and copy. This one is almost too obvious to mention, but make sure that your posts are well-edited and free of grammatical errors. Proof your content like a brand would, and hold it to the same standards that a publication would.

3) When reviewing products, be honest, but do not be condescending
Whenever you review a product or service, it is SO important to be honest with your readers. Do not mislead them or endorse a product you don’t believe in. Never do it for money or get pressured into a partnership if you don’t like a product. Your readers will not only be able to see right through it, but they’re not going to trust your future recommendations.
In the instance that a brand reaches out to you or sends you products that you are not comfortable recommending, kindly let the brand know but thank them for the gift. It’s much more respectful to let them know upfront that you are not interested in working together and it’s important to avoid writing a negative post. Not only can this negatively impact their brand, but can negatively impact yours as well – primarily because it may deter other brands who see your work from wanting to collaborate with you. Out of respect for the brand, do let them know that you appreciate receiving products, but will not be able to endorse them.

4) Be passionate about the brand
Don’t work with a brand just for the sake of working with them. Be passionate about them! Share what you love about their products. Show your readers why you took the time to write about them. Anyone can write a review, but a genuine review will be infinitely more meaningful than a fluffy post that was done just to appease a collaboration request.

5) Follow FTC Guidelines Always, ALWAYS state when the product or service you’re promoting has been gifted or if you have received compensation for the post. If you don’t, the brand can get in huge trouble with the FTC. Read all the rules here. Your statement can be as simple as “I received compensation in exchange for a review, but all thoughts and opinions are my own.” Your readers will appreciate your transparency, too!

6) Put yourself in the brand manager’s position So you just wrote a sponsored post and you’re about to share it with the brand. Before doing so, ask yourself: If you were the brand manager reading the post, would I be proud to share on the brand’s social network? Would you email it to your coworkers? Would you want the CEO to see it? Create content with these goals in mind.

Remember: Be genuine and only accept work from brands that you love and genuinely want to promote. If you don’t, you’re doing the brand, your readers, and yourself a disservice.