So, you’re taking our advice and are actively engaged on your social media platforms and notice that a blogger has tagged your business in one of their posts – you can use that photo for your own feed, right? WRONG! But, let’s discuss why.
The first thing you should ask yourself is this post one I worked with the blogger on? Now you may think that if you worked with the blogger and sponsored the post that of course you have a right to the material – but was this spelled out in the agreement? We will not share our personal opinions because every blogger is different and has their own reasons and we encourage you to have these conversations with the bloggers you work with but we see bloggers who consider the sponsorship to only cover promotion on their channels while others consider sponsorship to include photo rights. Keep in mind though that unless you contracted the photographer to create the photo the photo rights do not belong to you – they belong to the blogger.
If you did not work with the blogger on the post than first off take a moment to celebrate that you are receiving free word of mouth promotion! Always go and acknowledge the post and thank the blogger for their support. From there it really depends on you and what you feel is best for your business. Do you like the post and think it would add value to your own social media platform, are you impressed with this blogger’s photo quality and / or the response their post has received and would consider working with them in the future? If you would like to use the photo you could always just ask if you could repost but do keep in mind that this photo was created with the blogger’s time and talent – and presumably they spent money at your business so be respectful in your ask – if you are able to pay for the rights to the photo or offer a complimentary product / service than by all mean do so – this could be the start to a wonderful relationship! But, there’s also nothing wrong with simply acknowledging the post and moving on – after all you didn’t ask for this post to be created.
Essentially photos are a blogger’s inventory and just because you see it and you like it doesn’t mean you can have it any more than someone walking into you place of business can just have what they like. As we discussed in our last photo – it takes a lot of time and money for bloggers to create each photo they post. When working with bloggers it is so important to cover on the front end what is included in your partnership.