Bloggers Brunch, Brands and The Modern Parent

Last Friday, myself and 50 or so other bloggers gathered together for my third Bloggers Brunch run by the lovely Christie from Kids Business.

These mornings are a great way to catch up with other bloggers, to have a champers and a touch of pampering (thanks Ellie makeup) and to be introduced to some of the new products being launched by a variety of brands and organizations.

It started well enough, catching up with blogging buddies old and new. Then wouldn’t you know it, I was called up to model one of the latest looks from Mix Apparel,  the new clothing brand by Coles.You know when you have this weird feeling they are going to pick you, so you pretend to be busy, play with your phone and look anywhere but at the lady up there with the microphone…and yet they still call you up? Anyway despite the apprehension of having about 50 or so other bloggers watching me strut my stuff on the catwalk (most clicking away photos to later appear in twitter streams and on facebook), it was sweetened a little by the offer of Mix to let those of us that modelled, keep our outfit. And I must say the clothes are really pretty good and best of all, reasonably priced. A little weird to be buying clothes whilst doing the groceries, but apparently all the rage in the U.S and U.K. 

(here I am modelling my outfit…and yes I am aware I need not point out which one I am!)

After the fashion parade I made my way to see some of the products that are hitting the stores and so headed to the folk at Logitech. I was interested in learning about speaker docks for the boys ipods and accessories for the ipad. Whilst my son does a lot of typing on the ipad I was pleased to discover some great keyboard attachments that also act as ipad covers. Well fast forward to the end of the brunch and who should win the fabulous ipod speakers but yours truly! I must admit I did feel a little like a prize hog as I took out the clothes and the speakers…oh and then was called up with 5 other bloggers whilst everyone sang happy birthday!

(with my fabulous new ipod speakers and dock)

Anyway whilst we went home laden with bags of goodies, and I did discover some other great products, I think I will use this as an opportunity to have my first giveaway. So stay tuned!

And speaking of brands and blogs and products and sponsors, it is probably a good time to state my position on making money or receiving product for a blog.

Most bloggers work extremely hard on their blogs for very little monetary reward. I know that I blog because I love writing and I truly feel that I have something valuable to say and hopefully fulfil a need in my readers, be that to inform, to empathise, to support, encourage, give advice or purely to entertain. But if I am offered some form of sponsorship or product I will take it on only if it is in keeping with the aims of my blog, which is to help parents thrive in the world of modern parenting . This may mean it is a product I think will help make parents life easier, may help their daily grind, may entertain or educate their kids or may just add some fun to their day. In saying that however, I will not sing the praises of a company just because they have sent me a packet of biscuits, nor will I say I enjoyed a DVD if I did not. (note to DVD companies, I really don’t like a lot of kids movies so don’t send me any unless they are amazing and will keep me glued to the TV).

Thanks again to Christie and all the companies that did take the time to meet with bloggers. It is encouraging to know that brands are realising the potential of bloggers as an avenue to show off their products. They are realising that readers have a certain trust in the bloggers they read and are excited by the interaction and community spirit that these blogs are creating.  But whilst this is all good and well, creating great content takes time and effort, and the time and effort of every parent is precious. If I am going to spend it writing on my blog, I will always have the final say about what I write.

Do you like reading blogs that offer product reviews? Do you like the opportunity to participate in giveaways and competitions on the blogs you read?

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This Post Has 22 Comments

  1. Ai Sakura

    I like to read reviews only of stuff that I am interested haha. So obvious, right? But what I’m saying is that if I’m reading a fashion blog, I don’t want to suddenly have a review of that new mower you got.. I think participating in giveaways is pretty fun 🙂 but that’s not the main point for me to come bk to a blog..

    1. Martine

      I agree about the relevance thing and that is something I will be sticking with too. And absolutely a blog has to offer good content first and foremost to keep peole coming back 🙂

  2. Alex aka Whoa Mumma

    I’m happy if bloggers review stuff on their blogs. Just don’t give me a 300 word review on a packet of chips.

    I like getting things for free and I’m happy to let others know if the stuff is good.

    1. Martine

      Thanks Alex, and yes it is important to keep it all in perspective.

  3. Veronica @ Mixed Gems

    I don’t mind reviews and giveaways but I tend to skim those posts, in all honesty, unless the product is of interest and it’s esy to enter. I haven’t any plans to monetize my blog, mostly because doing just the writing part is already a lot of work. I may change my mind in future.

    1. Martine

      I agree about the time factor being an issue. I too am finding it challenging enough to keep up with the writing side of the blog, so we will have to see how we go!

  4. Caz

    As with the others, if the product is interesting i’m there. I love to have other peoples opinions before i buy. I’m also not again winning things 🙂

    1. Martine

      Thanks Caz, it certainly makes sense to read a review from someone whose opinion you trust, afterall there are so many products out there it can sometimes be little overwhelming.

  5. Jess

    It really depends on the product and the review. I don’t like straight out reviews; I want to hear about the blogger.
    I’m hoping to monetize my blog; I might not get much, but I love doing it and if I can make some moment as well, that would be great!

    1. Martine

      I think thats why I would be choosy with products as they have to allow me to tie in other information to make it interesting and worthwhile for the reader 🙂

  6. Kellie

    If I’m searching for a specific product or you can pique my interest in a new product, then I’m happy to read reviews.
    By the way, you looked gorgeous up there!!!! 🙂

    1. Martine

      Thankyou Kellie….way too kind!

  7. Claireyhewitt

    If I even get a whiff of a media release I am off, but rarely does that happen in the blogs I follow.

    I have no problem with sponsored posts, if they are well written, disclosed as sponsored and relevant. I also love a giveaway.

    1. Martine

      I like a giveaway too but similiarly I dont need to read a press release!

  8. Maid In Australia

    I actually love blogger reviews, as long as they are about something I’m interested in and are honest (ie, not just a press release). I trust bloggers way more than traditional advertising, PR and even traditional media reviews, because, like you, most bloggers can’t be bought or swayed, they are honest. I have been known to buy something because a fellow blogger I trust has recommended it.
    Likewise with giveaways, but it has to be something worthwhile entering (eg, not a packet of chips or a $5 voucher), and not too difficult (eg, sign up here, follow x company here, then do this and this and this. Just answer a question and follow me is usually good enough for me, if it’s too hard, it’s too much work really).
    Hope that doesn’t sound bad, I DO want to win stuff, but there are so many competitions out there now, and I have such limited time, that I tend to allow myself say an hour a week to enter, and so the quicker they are and the more relevant they are to me, the more likely I am to enter.
    Hope this helps.
    And keep on blogger, the brunch sounded GREAT!

    1. Martine

      I agree that if it is too much trouble to enter I usually give it a miss. I also agree that bloggers are usually a good source of referral for a poduct as they generally are very honest. Thanks for your valuable comment 🙂

  9. Gemma @ My Big Nutshell

    I like product reviews of things I am keen on, I like reading about others experiences too. I don’t really enter comps unless I am super keen. I don’t like having to jump through a million hoops to enter either.

    The brunch sounded really fun and interesting too. You are a lovely model!

    1. Martine

      It seems to be a consensus that time is precious so we dont want to be jumping through hoops just to have a chance of winning something 🙂

  10. kirri

    Someone had a lucky day!
    I enjoy the opportunity to win something for sure but in all honesty, if there are giveaways left, right and centre, even if they are great prizes, I find it a bit of a turn off. I visit blogs for a good read, advice or a bit of a laugh. Once in a while a review is great but too often and I start wondering what the bloggers motives are. Too honest?

    1. Martine

      Absolutely love your honesty Kiri and I have to say I largely agree. Whilst I may do the odd giveaway in the future they will be a very small part of my blog.

    2. Fizuli

      Itna achchhi baten, itni peadnarryak . Nishchaya hi aisi baaton ki taraf logon ka dhyan aakarshit karna vastav me ek paropkari karya hai jo pratyaksh me nahin dikhta kintu apratyaksh rup se yah karya logo ka jeevan badalne me sahayak hota hai. Aapko bahut sadhuvad. Aise karya karne wale vyaktitya ko protsahit karna main apna saubhagya samajhati hoon.

  11. Lower North Shore Blog

    Hey all,

    That’s a cool topic about the modern parent in this modern area. Which is we have to still appear modern to connect with our children. And the important is we have to keep a relation between the blogger each other to gathered.


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