From recent events, and pretty much the entire time I’ve been blogging, I feel very inclined to write this blog post. Getting into this business I quickly learned what it took to be successful to grow your following. Being true to yourself and your style is obviously the most important but being cohesive is almost equally important. If you look at my instagram, it’s pretty easy to see that I have a dark and monochromatic theme. I am a meticulous planner so coming up with creative content takes time. To stay true to my style and to create a cohesive feed, I have to plan out my shoots and posts very carefully and this isn’t always an easy task.
Before I even started this business I was and still am a successful commercial advertising wardrobe stylist. Even though I’ve only been blogging for a little over a year, I’ve been on the advertising side for the past 6 years working closely with clients to create an amazing finished product that the world will see. With all of that experience in such a technical industry, I’m pretty damn good at my job. I’ve always treated any client with the utmost respect in representing their product to the best of my ability.
With that being said, I’ve had my fare share of collaboration requests. Most of which go off without a hitch. Every so often there’s a bad apple in the bunch as you might have seen on my Snapchat (@dtk_austin).
Let’s just jump right into it.
Never have I ever been treated so poorly as I was by Smile Sciences teeth whitening company. Let me just give you a quick rundown of what happened yesterday afternoon. Said company had contracted me out to post a photo on Instagram with their product clearly visible in the photo. I signed a contract with the details and went on to shoot their product. Photos were sent over for approval only to be notified 4-5 days later that they were too blurry, yet their product was in full focus. I emailed back voicing my concerns about how they were blurry, what exactly they wanted and then told them I would send them the high resolution photos to show their product is in focus. They sent me a few inspo images which looked just as blurry and literally the exact same as mine, so I responded asking what exactly they wanted with absolutely no response for almost a week.
Considering I am getting married in less than a week, I needed information to post prior to leaving for my honeymoon. Understandable, right? So, I email them yesterday asking if they had received my last 3 emails and if I didn’t get a response I wouldn’t be posting for them. With no response after 6 hours, I give them a call. Said company’s owner felt the need to chat with me in which an unnecessarily heated argument occurred with me telling them I would NOT be posting for them and was voiding my contract. The whole conversation was very condescending towards me and my business… and if you know me well, I don’t put up with that at all, and I let her know that with a few choice words, which she is trying to throw in my face.
In response to our phone call, the owner of Smile Sciences, Andra Moore, decided to write an extremely harassing email stating, “I’d be happy to compare notes on the level of my success versus yours to determine who should be telling whom how to run companies.” Said owner threatened to sue me for slander in regards to this issue, yet I do have the right of freedom of speech and to express my feelings and concern on this subject. In addition, I’m not falsely stating anything that occurred in our dispute. She then goes on to say, “I’m not sure other brands would want to move forward with you if they heard what it was like to work with you and your shocking behavior. We all talk, ya know.” So, is she slandering MY name to other companies now?? Isn’t that worse?!?! Is she trying to ruin my name and reputation because of an issue we couldn’t resolve instead of just letting it go? Like I said, it’s just Instagram…
Since when does anyone deserve to get treated that way? Some of these companies seem to forget we are real people with real feelings. They also seem to think that we’re some twenty year old kid that has no life beyond instagram. Well, excuse me, I’m a 30 something, former architect that started a very technical company from nothing and choose to blog on the side. Does that make me stupid? Does that allow someone to threaten my reputation? No, I actually have a brain and know that what this person is saying is absolutely appalling and absurd!
This company doesn’t value influencers beyond an Instagram post. They could literally care less about anything else but getting an ROI for themselves.
So what could have actually helped in this situation? Their social media person taking the time to email me back in a reasonable amount of time stating what they needed in regards to a post. I did come to find out that this social media gal was actually reading all of my emails and responding to someone else stating, “Can you help me with her? She’s now being a little feisty.” This was even BEFORE I had made the phone call to try and figure out what was going on! Would YOU want to buy a product from this company?? Or promote their product??
Blogging is NOT a full time job for me and I don’t have the luxury to just go out and shoot all day everyday. PLUS, did we all forget… I am planning a wedding in addition to having a life!
From my personal experience, this company is not one I would ever recommend working with if you are a blogger and I personally would never recommend the product to anyone. Take this as my personal Yelp! review. Hope this post was informative for all of you working your asses off in the blogging world. Don’t take crap from ANYONE and ALWAYS stand up for yourselves.