Folksy Ltd

Why I won't work for publicity

(Eileens Craft Studio) #1

This is an excellent blog and I totally agree with very point.

I’ve written and produced 2 piece now for a magazine in return for ‘free advertising’ what a foolish thing for me to have done.

My time is precious, I’m a business and I have bills to pay why would I work for something that doesn’t not pay me money?

Neither time did they even bother to send me a ‘free copy’ of the magazine.

Second time I’ve no idea even if they mentioned my shop.

From now on if I’m approached I will only write for a magazine when they pay me real money at the rate I invoice them for and on my turns.

These magazines are getting free work from us for promise’s of promotion and possible future sells. Yet they get paid.

Promises of so calledl ‘Free promotion’ and future sales does not pay the bills.

(Melanie Commins) #2

So very true.

The only thing I will do for nothing is send high-res versions of my product images if requested.

Otherwise, if someone really wants something (be it physical items or tutorials) then, if they’re serious, they will be willing to pay for it. Writing tutorials for sewing mags has become a lucrative form of income that I had never even considered when I first started my business.

I get so many of the ‘give me this thing for free and I will promote you to my xxxxx number of followers’ emails that I don’t even bother politely declining anymore. Same with the ones offering ‘exciting business opportunities’. If someone has something serious (and worthwhile) to offer they’ll be straight to the point in their first message … none of that vague wishy-washy stuff.

(Julia K Walton) #3

I absolutely agree with you, Eileen.

In the past I was talked into coughing up £150 of free buttons + packaging/shipping to 17 winners of a magazine’s prize draw.(In return for a mention of my button shop in the magazine.) The magazine didn’t even have the decency to tell me when the promotion was taking place, nor send me a free copy of the magazine, and the ‘publicity’ generated no where near covered the cost of the promotion. Never again!

I have also, on two occasions, made my union jack patchwork wall hangings (taking 10 - 20 hours of work each, depending on the size) for free use of organisations during a promotion, with an eye to selling them at the end of said promotions. One did sell (by my own efforts, not through the organisation in question), the other two large ones are still in my shop at knockdown prices because I now have to class them as ‘used’ (even though they are in ‘as new’ condition). It feels like I did all the work, paid for all the materials and got nothing in return. I will not be working for free again!

I imagine ‘sale or return’ in a B&M shop could be similarly annoying, but have no experience of that.

(Pam Southernwood) #4

I sell on sale or return basis Julia and it’s worked out fine for me. True I don’t get paid for anything until it sells but if it doesn’t sell and I take it back I can list it online. I sell much more offline than online and don’t have to do any promoting or worry about posting stuff so I prefer it. I think the situations you have all described sound appalling!

(Christine E.) #5

I was persuaded a couple of years back to produce a “How to make…” article for a craft magazine. They didn’t even print the address of my shop alongside let alone pay me. Anyone else would be paid to contribute to a magazine, but crafts makers- no,we’re supposed to do it for a little bit of publicity. Never again…

(Julia K Walton) #6

Hi Pam

I have never tried sale or return, but I thought maybe if things were stolen or damaged while in the shop’s care, I wondered who would be responsible? Do you have some sort of agreement that covers things like that in advance?

Julia :slight_smile:

(Julia K Walton) #7

Having now read the excellent blog article mentioned by Eileen, I thought that the Margot Potter’s idea of sending the magazine a schedule of the fees she charges was a good idea, when they try to get her to do something for ‘publicity’ instead. Then they either have to pay her fees and she will do it, or there is no deal.

(Pam Southernwood) #8

Julia, the shop I sell at lists everything I take in and makes a copy after I’ve signed it so I have a copy of everything I leave there. He pays out at the end of each month and gives me a note with a list of what I’ve sold. He’s insured so if anything is damaged or stolen I’ll get paid.

(Ronald Koorm) #9

I was once asked to present a research paper that I had written, to a very large audience at a seminar for nothing. Not only that, but I was expected to pay for attending the two-day seminar as well, and no expenses allowed ! They eventually offered a tiny discount, but I declined, and they lost out. They were trying it on.

Anyone who is interested in doing publicity work, should set out clearly with the organisers exactly what is expected of them, and what they are likely to receive in return.
Imagine that I contact each one of you out of the blue, and say “Hey, how about getting great exposure of your product for a small input/ written article/talk/demo/free samples/etc”. Can you spend your time better elsewhere, or not ?

Be very clear as to what is guaranteed via contractual agreement, and what is not. If no contract is offered, you are leaving yourself wide open to abuse of your services. I suspect that getting the organiser to sign a contract will be like getting blood out of a stone.

I have in the past, given seminar lectures for no fee , and even done “free” professional work in the past, for several organisations. In each case, there was a reason for doing so, and it wasn’t all about generating work.

(Sonia Adam) #10

It’s a bit like cheeky bloggers asking for freebies in return for reviewing your item & sharing with their ‘thousands’ of viewers - no thanks!

(Deborah Jones) #11

I get those cheeky blogger ones ,often they are after my most expensive bangles in return for an advert on their blog. Some people must go for it or they wouldn’t persist.

Julia @FireHorseTextiles I sell sale or return through quite a few shops and the items are their responsibility while they have them.
I think I would think twice about doing it with textile or paper items that could get spoiled or grubby though- wholesale would be better then.

(Heidi Meier) #12

Great blog - made me smile. Thanks for sharing it!

(Julia Walton) #13

Hi Pam - that sounds like a good system!
Hi Deborah - yes, I agree re: textiles & paper. I have been putting off trying my textile wall hangings at galleries/art cafes etc for that reason.

(Sorry I am replying from my other account now - I am Julia from Fire Horse Textiles!)