Reena, founder of the hugely popular Hygge for Home Blog and a home & interior influencer with over 183,000 Instagram followers, talks to us about working with brands, influencer campaigns and creating engaging content.


How should brands approach you for projects?

I prefer email over direct messages as DMs can get inundated and lost/forgotten about very quickly. I like to have as much detail as possible up front to save going back and forth. It’s always helpful if brands can supply a brief early on with headline messages, content requirements and deadlines. I then have enough information to assess if I have time to take on the work and to make sure I am not planning and launching a similar campaign with a potential competitor brand in the same week or one that may have conflicting messages. It also means I can take all the information I need to establish a fee for the work.

Something which brands don’t tend to do, but I would be keen to see, is to explain why they have approached me and want to work with me. Often it feels like a blanket email approach. I understand that everyone is busy, and always assume other bloggers etc. have been asked too. It’s always a friendlier approach and I feel more engaged if I know the brand has taken the time to look at my content first.

How should brands collaborate with you on content?

A campaign is far more powerful if you give content creators the scope to create different pieces of content as we can communicate your message in different ways. A main feed image is the one that is hopefully going to stop people in their tracks and pause from scrolling and allows for your key message to be taken in by the audience. However, captions alone do not always work and not everyone who likes a picture will read the caption.

Stories and video content are very powerful as it helps bring the product to life and of course the ability to swipe up and buy is really useful for brands if they are using trackable links. Although the job of a content creator is not to make sales, but to increase brand awareness to a niche, targeted and already engaged audience whose demographics fits with their target audience.

When a brand wants to work on a long-term partnership it is also always more appealing as it gives a content creator the chance to develop a longer-term story which feels more natural and authentic. Although one-off campaigns are fine, I think brands need to think of using the same content creator more than once to develop a more meaningful relationship with their followers.

Are there any bug bears that you have about brands that approach you for projects?

The biggest bug bear is if it’s clear that the brand doesn’t understand you and hasn’t taken the time to visit your feed or look at your content to get to know your style and tone of voice and are offering a campaign which isn’t a good fit.

If you get a blanket email, that can also be little off putting as you can feel like the brand is looking to reach out to as many people as possible rather than wanting to work with you specifically.

What are your thoughts on payments for posts Vs offering products for review?

The job of a blogger / content creator can still be misunderstood. A content creator does many jobs from the moment we receive the first email, we have to understand the brief and come up with ideas, email questions back and forth, negotiate our fees, source any props/product, style and shoot the product, edit the photographs and spend time creating the written content. We often have to go through an approval process and once we post the content, we have to manage the DM’s and conversation with our followers. We have to review the content sending stats etc back to the brand and finally invoice…and more often than not, chase the invoice.

It is not a quick process and many hours of work goes on behind the scenes and brands are working with one person who does it all, not a marketing and PR agency who have a team to manage all of those elements, from the Director who may negotiate fees and the brief, to a team of creatives who come up with ideas to a team of prop sources and stylists to the HR team who invoice and chase payments. With that in mind, I very rarely take products for review as it does not make sense for me to spend time writing and reviewing a product instead of taking a fee for my work. With the reach and weekly impressions my account has, in an average month, my content would have been seen and far more people reached than an average magazine might sell copies of, so a brands marketing and PR budget is very well spent if they work with the right content creator.

My exception to the rule is small independent brands who may want to gift items such as plants, cushions or candles, but who do not have a marketing or PR budget. I will do this on a case by case basis as I do not have a house big enough to accommodate lots of freebies and again creating content is so timely, I wouldn’t be able to do this on a regular basis.

What’s the best/most enjoyable brand partnership you’ve recently worked on?

I really enjoyed working on a campaign for Innocent Oat drink over Christmas as it gave me an opportunity to style a different product and talk about other things aside from home decor that I am passionate about. Although my niche is and always will be home decor, I really enjoy working on travel and lifestyle content and that is definitely my goal for this year to work with brands outside of the “interiors” world.

We worked with Reena on the #Outroom campaign for Origin, the UK’s leading manufacturer of bi-folding doors and windows. The campaign aimed to demonstrate the use of the third space created by bi-folding doors - the Outroom - and highlight how it increases the living potential of a home. Read more about our experience in Influencer Relations.

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