UPDATE – This post was originally written and published in 2014, the blogging landscape has changed A LOT since then, and sadly sponsored posts are no longer a method of monetisation that we either use or recommend. We have since fallen head over heels in love with monetising via eproducts and courses, and if you’d like to find out more about how you can do that too, click here.
Q: I have had a few enquiries from brands lately about doing sponsored posts, but I have no idea how much I should be charging? I don’t want to under charge, but I don’t want to scare them away either. Help!
A: This is actually a question I get asked all the time, and was one of the things that prompted me to start my blog monetization eCourse the Bloggers’ MBA (where I dedicate 3 out of the 6 weeks to the proven strategies and actions bloggers need to take to start really making regular money from doing what they love… blogging!)
You see unlike pretty much every other occupation on the planet, there is no real industry standard for bloggers, especially not for things like how much bloggers can or should charge.
And because everyone is just making it up as they go along, it can also make it hard to justify the value you and your blog brings to a brand, when the number is just plucked out of the air.
So I decided to make it my mission to blast through the BS around how to make money from blogging!
And the first place I wanted to start is with how to figure out exactly what the value is of one of your blog posts. And it’s not just knowing what you can charge, but knowing why you can charge it. Because once you know the actual value of your product (which is what your Sponsored posts are), then it makes it so much easier to sell when a brand comes knocking as well.
Now there are three factors that need to be considered when pricing anything you do.
1 – How much time and skill is creating this going to take (that is, how many hours do you need to actually create the post)?
2 – How much coverage and value is the brand going to receive from having this on your blog (this is all down to your number of visitors, how much interaction you get etc).
3 – What is the market willing to pay? Sadly, advertising is still a free market, and so you do still have to take what buyers expect to pay into consideration as well (but just because a brand only wants to pay you $100 doesn’t mean you should take it!).
How you actually calculate your Sponsored post rate should be roughly as follow:
Number of hours spent creating/writing the post x Your post creation hourly rate (aka $50) + Number of specialist hours spent aka styling and photography x Your specialist hourly rate (aka $100)
= This equals the bare minimum you should be charging.
ie: 2 x $50 + 1 x $100 = $200 (minimum Sponsored post cost)
As a minimum I would say you should charge at least $50 per hour for post creation, $100 per hour for photography, and $150+ per hour if you are a real expert in your field.
Next we figure out how much your sponsored posts are actually worth as far as the coverage they provide to the brands you work with.
And you calculate that as follows;
Minimum Sponsored post cost (as above) + (Average number of comments per post x $5) + (Average number of views per post x $1.50) + (Average number of Social Media shares per post x $5)
= Total value of your sponsored posts.
ie $200 + (20 x $5) + (500 x $1.50) + (10 x $5) = $1100 per Sponsored post
Now of course this is just a guide, and it is based around Australian ad rates and is in AUD$, but I hope you found this simple calculation a good starting point when you are next updating your media kit, or responding to a Sponsored post request. And don’t forget the service you/we provide brands really is just so valuable, and we need to be charging what we are worth!