A big thank you to Rori for this guest post! She recently published a free ebook on how to get started in the world of sex blogging, and she has a lot of great information and advice. Since I’m struggling to post regularly this summer anyway, her submitting this guest post really helps me out. Please contact me if you’re interested in being a guest blogger.

I Started a Blog and All I Got was This Lousy Sex Toy…

I didn’t start blogging at Between  My Sheets in order to receive free sex toys, but it has definitely been a perk. It was unexpected, the first time I received an email from a sex toy company who wanted to send me something for free. I couldn’t say no, and as more sex toy companies began to approach me, I continued to say yes (and I even wrote a post for Naughty Muffin about my propensity for hoarding sex toys).

But I’ve learned that I just can’t accept every offer, and it isn’t just because I run out of space. I think it’s also important for all sex toy reviewers out there to value their time. Some sex toys just aren’t worth it.

If you were to charge by the hour, how much would your time be worth? Now, think about how long it would take you to review the product in question and write the review on your blog? Is your “payment” – the free product worth it?

If not, that doesn’t mean you should give the company a blanket “no.” Instead, you have a few other options:

  • Ask the company to pay for a sponsored post. They can sponsor the review itself or sponsor a different post and also send you the product to review. In either case you are upselling the company from sending
    you a sex toy to actually spending money with you.
  • Offer to tweet or post on Facebook about the product instead. Social updates take a lot less time than full blog posts, so it makes sense to do them in exchange for a lower-priced item.
  • Ask if you can link using an affiliate program. That way, you’ll not only get a free product, but you’ll also receive a commission whenever someone buys a product after reading the review on your blog.
  • Propose a giveaway in conjunction with your review. Contests and giveaways can bring a lot of traffic to your blog. If a review product alone isn’t worth the time for you, instead consider proposing they hold a giveaway on your blog in addition to the free product. What you don’t get in retail value, you can make up in traffic.

In any case, whenever you talk to brand about reviewing a toy, remember to put on your professional hat. We might be talking about items to stick in your vagina here, but it’s still a business deal. If they send you an offer that you don’t like, remember that it’s nothing personal. They’re trying to get as much value for their money as possible.

I know several sex bloggers who companies avoid like the plague because they are rude or even downright nasty. And believe me, people in this industry talk. Being unprofessional to one company (yes, even if the rep is being annoying or a jerk) could put your relationships with other companies at risk. So if you choose not to work with a company, politely say no and move on to the next to review offer.

Bio: Rori Sweet is the author of How to Become a Sex Blogger which is available for free on her blog, Between My Sheets. You can also find her on Twitter at @SweetRori.

Comments and feedback welcome.