How to: Product Reviews. We all have different learning styles, and our review formats will not appeal to everyone's style, but what it will do is reflect your personality and let it shine. While I am no blogging expert, I do read and write a lot of product reviews, and I am just going to take some time to share some observations and tips that I've learned through blogging.
HOW TO: PRODUCT REVIEWS
Depending on what you look for in a product, your product review will most likely focus on those items. For myself, I find that I like to get to the point and not dilly dally too much around small details. A person who depots their eyeshadows, blushes, and lipsticks won't really care what the packaging looks like. However, for someone who likes to display their products will take packaging into consideration. I am somewhere in the middle. I've found that if you have large, clear photos that demonstrate a product's beauty, you won't have to talk too much about what it's made out of. You can go straight to talking about the formula, consistency, and what you like/don't like about the product. Also, you can write in several paragraphs, one for each point, or summarize everything in one short paragraph. A typical product review on A Beauty Moment looks like this:
- Short Background
- Name of product and brand
- Formula and Application
- Likes and Dislikes
- Where to Buy and Cost
When you watch ads on the internet and on television, you are usually drawn in by the bold, vivid colors and clear, high definition images, right? Same with product reviews. You want your product photos and swatches to be BIG, BOLD, CLEAR, and most importantly, you want to showcase the beauty of that product. If there's a nice detail on the packaging that you would like to showcase, zoom in. (Tutorial: Make Photos Brighter)
There are many bloggers and Youtubers that use photos from Google searches, Pinterest, etc., and I have to warn you of using those photos. Firstly, they aren't the most attractive photos, because it's clear that they aren't yours. Second, the original photographer can retaliate if they don't like the way you used the photo or if they just don't like people using their photos. Sites like Polyvore or RewardStyle are okay, since the products are linked directly to vendors, but when you download a photo and use it, be sure to use caution.
First, let me say that just because a review is negative, does not mean that it is more honest than a positive review. I'm not really sure why people get excited when negative reviews are posted. We don't like negative reviews, because that means someone somewhere wasted their money. Not good. However, we write negative reviews every so often, and there is a proper way to go about doing so. I've found that completely bashing and blasting a product or company is not the way to go. Why? As bloggers, we want companies to work with us. When brands see us saying nasty things about other brands, they will think twice before considering working with us. Wayne Goss, legendary makeup artist is a perfect example. Most companies don't work with him, regardless of his million+ following, because of how he worded reviews in the past. They use his videos as company training tutorials, but they won't send him products to try out and review or even put him on their PR list. Why? Probably because they're scared of what he'll say.
Also, brands can retaliate and some do. You do not want to be sued by a brand, because your negative review "ruined' their company. Real story right here. Yes, it sucks, it's scary, and it's very possible. Again, be careful what you say. There are ways to say negative things without being nasty and hateful. When you completely bash a brand or product, it turns people away from that product and that brand, and it really doesn't help anyone. I think everyone is entitled to their own opinion and with that opinion. While we can and should respect each others' opinions, everything on the internet should be taken with a grain of salt.
Ahhh the controversy is here! Lol, I'm kidding. However, people get so put off by sponsored reviews, and I know it has a lot to do with companies buying positive opinions. You can see it clearly in Youtube and blogs, and it is a little disheartening, especially when every single person that received the PR kit has nothing bad to say. Very fishy and it turns off your readers and viewers. If they start to suspect, they won't trust you anymore, and you don't want that.
Sponsored reviews are when a company pays you to review a product, and it's good, because it means you are on a company's radar. There's absolutely nothing wrong with making money off your blog as long as you continue to provide excellent quality, relevant content. Don't promote a hammer if you're mainly a beauty blog, you know? Blogging, especially fashion and beauty blogging can be really expensive. People will get all nasty, because mostly they are jealous and hateful trolls - so just ignore them. For your loyal readers, though, you want to be completely transparent. You want to have a clear disclaimer at the beginning or end of your sponsored post that is easy to see. And no, a * is not good enough. You need to be CRYSTAL CLEAR. Nobody likes a shady blogger or Youtuber.
There are probably a lot more points to hit, but I'm going to save that for another day. What are some of your thoughts on product reviews? Like them? Hate them? What about sponsored posts? Share below! :)
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