Tuesday, March 21, 2017

*SPONSORED* RIVET RANT: Minimum 3000 followers to make $$$?!?!

My follower count is small because I keep it honest.
I get rid of the bots and the MLM representatives on Instagram.
I do everything on my blog without deception.
My worth as an influencer is minimal because of this.
I don't have that sociopathic trait that decimates everybody in the way for advancement.
I am a terrible liar.
If it's not the truth, I cannot say it.
I won't do it just for the money.
I wanted to do it because I related to it.
I tried to do it because I could have a small double-digit amount of dollars to put away for financial emergencies.
I tried so damn hard to stay awake and ready to do this.
What am I talking about?

A sponsored campaign via TRIBE that requires a minimum of 3,000 followers.

There is a lack of admiration for the people who put out quality content, but do not get the growth. Doing everything a blogger can do; creating the content, contacting brands and PR agencies, being active in blogger communities; and it still just seems like I'm being left further and further behind whilst everybody else is somehow advancing. That's not to say that there is deception involved, but I have to question the following factors as to why my audience is not growing as fast as it should.

Is it my honesty?
Does my content actually suck?
Does my method of advertising my content suck?
Is it my lack of social understanding?
Is it personal?
Am I too critical on myself?
I get amazing feedback from brands, so what is it?
What am I doing wrong?

The only reason I even considered this opportunity to have a sponsored post put up on is because it was relevant to me as a student. I wanted to let other students know that they can get 10% off at Sephora with UNiDAYS (a discount program for students in Australia). Now I am doing it for free, on my blog. I'm just going to tell my audience that this discount exists so my fellow students can save a few dollars. Some influencer out there is going to post about this and make a few hundred dollars because they can.

Here is that flatlay I painstakingly prepared for the campaign before hitting the submit button only to be advised that I require a minimum of 3,000 followers.

Flatlay of products I own that are sold at Sephora and stationary I use when studying.

Some items in this image were received as PR samples, but I'm not talking about the products here, hey?


If you clicked through from my blog's homepage, I actually clickbaited you to read this post.


  1. Oh man that sucks so freaking much. I gave up on the whole followers game thing, it's just too easy for people to buy followers and feels so fake. Hopefully something happens and your profile grows randomly!

    1. I am hoping for that moment where I have content that engages people into wanting to follow.

      Cross promotion isn't doing anything. I check insights to get an idea of when my audience is most active, so I can target posts at that time. I also interact when I receive genuine comments. I don't like those generic comments like "cool pic". Also, I don't allow self promotion on a post, because it derails from my content onto theirs. I wish "aspiring makeup artists" would stop doing that, work for it like everybody else.

  2. This sucks. I've been reading a bit recently about people buying fake followers & it's so dodgy. From what I read, unfortunately some PR's are apparently ok with this, knowing full well people have done it. I don't do social media for my blog at present (although I ought to), but if I did then I'd be keeping it real because I too can't lie to save my life.

    I also think that the blogging market is so saturated these days that it can be difficult to cut through. I'd say that that is only one of the reasons why we have this problem though.

    1. I honestly don't believe most bloggers are buying followers, and less so, not blocking spam accounts, however, it's the growth - sometimes it's just pure luck. The engagement I get from spam is small, so I remove them to get a more organic based engagement reports, but they don't make much difference. I think the algorithms involved in social media play a huge part in engagement. Instagram changed their algorithm to the same one as Facebook pages, so you have to pay to get it out there.

      This blog was receiving a lot of hits from Russia at one point, and I think Google got on top of it and got rid of them.

    2. With Google's new Penguin 2 AI, those buying followers and spammers will no longer be counted. so.. I think honesty is still a best policy

    3. That's really good to know, Ailyn!

    4. I don't believe that most bloggers are buying followers either, but like everything there are those who are more dishonest than the rest of us & will use that to get ahead. I too believe in honesty being the best policy & I'd rather be like that than sugarcoat things. My blog was also getting a lot of hits from Russia at several stages, but that thankfully has stopped now (along with all the weird referring sites).

  3. I think its pretty narrow minded thinking that its just because you don't lie... isn't your blog only a few months old? A follower base takes a lot of time consistent work

    1. The blog is 7 months old, but my Instagram presence is consistent content for 3 years.

    2. I have had a blog for 5 years and still have under 3k followers. Its a slow slog

  4. Thank you for this post! It has been quite frustrating for me too! While some people seem to be breezing through a follower growth, while others clearly have purchased their followers. I just wish that companies like tribe didn't just have the blanket rule of 3k followers in order to apply for a sponsored post. A person with a smaller following can post an impressive photo with a captivating caption and the right hashtags just as an influencer with a huge following. Everyone started somewhere; give the little guys a chance too!

    Lubz || http://lubzsays.com

    1. You're right; killer content doesn't have to come from a place of popularity!

  5. Yes I noticed this with Tribe too. I've been trying to get to 3000 on Insta so I can apply (some other companies insist on 5000 followers minimum!). Wish they would realise there are other important factors such as engagement with your readers/followers and it's not always about huge numbers!

    1. Especially if the numbers do not equate to the target audience. (Could be some legit accounts, but not from the target demographic.)

  6. This is a good discussion.
    I have submitted a few briefs for Tribe last year.
    Just to let you know a little bit more about the process too, it's not a guarantee even if you do meet the followers count.
    I met the criteria and followed the briefs and I was declined on 2 occasions.
    One beauty brand said I wasn't a good fit for them (which confused me somewhat, I assume it was because I was already a customer and had posted about them previously, I couldn't be bothered to communicate further with them)
    Another brief got put on 'hold' for over 3 months before the brand said that where changing marketing direction and cancelled the brief, I do believe from communications with Tribe that they have put processes in place to stop that happening again though.
    I do agree that a number isn't everything, I've seen a few accounts with 20k+ followers who are not even getting 100 likes on a photo, yet brands/PR only seem to look at the top number.
    I do think there will be a lot more changes this year with the way influencer campaigns are run, this is still a really new territory and the rules/regulations are really being written as it goes, with that will open new doors.

    1. Thanks for your input! Sorry that the campaigns didn't work out for you, but you got the opportunity to submit to them, and that is exactly the issue being raised. I hope the changes do have a positive effect on the influencer community and work in favour for both the brands and influencers alike! It just really helps to weed out dishonesty in advertising.

      I've been finding this kind of similar to applying to university via an equity consideration admission; based on disability... Pain in the butt (no really, my right hip is killing me!)