October 5, 2019
This instagram bio challenge for creative women was accidentally started by a small group of influencers and has quickly gained momentum. Now, dozens have changed their instagram bios to band together to set the tone that we do work that deserves to be paid (as opposed to discounts, free products or promises of ‘exposure’).
Testimonial: “Since I switched my bio, I feel more professional and assertive, and I’ve had a few inquiries around my rates (as opposed to offering free stuff). I am getting inquiries from people who value my time and my work which is validated and encouraging” – Influencer, asked to remain anonymous
So– all of this kicked off when Crystal from Hustle With Luster was reading the below excerpt from my blog post “If You’re A Canadian Influencer, Then You Can Start Making Money (I’ll Show You How)”
Stop using the terms “collaborate” + “partner”
If you want to start getting paid, only use the words “Work With Me” in your bio, media kit, rate card and website. This places the emphasis on the fact that you do REAL work that deserves to be paid.
Crystal shared, “I’m replacing the term ‘collaborate’ with WORK in my profile… it definitely is work to create content and people who work should get PAID”.
So there were two of us who changed our bios. In most cases, it would have just ended there. But little did we know, things were just getting started. Kelly from Pine and Poplars added “work with me” to her instagram bio and a movement was created!
11. K Dreyer Co
12. CPC Woodcraft
13. Monsterz Mama
14. Van City Kids
15. Just Sultan
18. Rhiannon Mairi
19. Melanie Alatise
20. Kaylyn Barr
27. A Dose Of Ohana
28. Chasing The Ts
32. Fashion Or Knot
38. Glammama Of 3
40. The OM Edit
42. Candace Rorrer
43. Style By Dona
44. A Cup of Jaba
45. The Honest Root
47. Nina On The Moon
48. Life As Mrs Mum
49. PNW Teacher Mom
50. Travel Rebel
51. Kelly Bailey
52. Blackberry Trees
53. The Felt Barn
55. Mommy Mila Blog
If I wasn’t surprised enough about how this challenge struck a chord, things reached a new level. Many people told me that they wanted to add “work with me” to their bios but were afraid that they’d “piss off” brands and get themselves “blacklisted” by PR agencies.
This makes me feel incredibly sad, and angry. Creative women were telling me that they were afraid to ask to be paid for their work. This is 2019.
Imagine my surprise when a handful of PR Agencies and mainstream magazine editors sent me messages of quiet support– they agree that influencers and other creative women deserve to be paid for the content they create.
As cool as it is to be supported by industry insiders, the best part of the “work with me” instagram bio challenge has been the feedback from women about how it’s helped change how they see themselves– and how others see them.
For the record, I’m not anti-collab or partnership AT ALL. Being able to join forces with like-minded small shops and other influencers are part of the main reason that I love instagram and the rest of social media. Some of my most favourite projects I’ve ever worked on have had zero money exchanged and have been mutually beneficial collaborations with brands that I’ve long respected and influencers who I consider to be close friends. So– that’s not what I have a beef with.
It’s unfortunate that the words collaboration and partnership (to a lesser extent) have been used and abused by brands (bigger brands especially) to mean that influencers will do what amounts to hundreds of dollars worth of unpaid work in exchange for free stuff that’s not worth nearly the same amount of money.
Creating content takes time, experience, and also costs a lot of money for camera equipment, editing software and website hosting. Yes, free stuff is nice at first, but it doesn’t pay the bills. I’d rather pay my own money I make for the things I want to have, or the events we want to do.