If a blog post on simply START living contains any of the categories mentioned below, in any combination, I’ll lay it out for you in a disclosure note under the header image. In simple terms. 

Here’s a bit more information about what it all means... 

Paid For Content 

In order to facilitate an income, I occasionally partner with brands to create paid for content. This will only ever be with brands I love and who I already shop with or would happily decide to buy from. 

I’m not here to deceive you and never have been - my business model is a simple one. I create a mix of content - approximately 70% is my own organic content and the other 30% is paid for. The 30% enables me to carry on and create the rest whilst meeting my business costs and make a small profit each year. 

I turn down about 80% of the things I’m asked to promote as they’re not relevant to me or to you and I refuse to comprise the relationship I’ve built with my readers over the last eleven plus years. 

If I’m paid to write content you’ll also see the word AD appear in the title. This means I’m paid for my time to come up with a concept, style and photograph everything and weave it all together to create some useful, informative or inspirational blog and social media content.  

I’m not paid to like something, give you a false impression or regurgitate sales speak verbatim.  

Affiliate Links 

If I use product affiliate links I’ll tell you by putting a * next to the link. Affiliate linking means that if a reader makes a purchase from clicking a product link or image, I receive a small percentage of the sale in the form of a commission payment. This doesn't impact the cost of the product to the reader and dependent on the brand, is generally between 2% and 10% of the item amount.  

It doesn’t mean that the brand has any say over how I feature the link/image/product or even if I feature it in the first place. 

I partner with Reward Style to facilitate the majority of my affiliate links and you can read their Privacy Policy here. 

Gifted Items 

I sometimes feature gifted items within blog posts and over on Instagram. 

In 99% of cases, my working setup means that gifts are sent on a pre-agreed basis. This means the brand isn’t wasting their budget and between us, we’re not creating unnecessary waste in the environment. 

If I’m sent something to try and I don’t like it - it won’t make it anywhere here or on social media. If this turns out to be the case and it’s of significant value then I’ll offer to return it - if not I’ll pass it on to a friend who might like it. 

As gifts don’t pay the bills, the majority that I feature are on a zero obligation basis - i.e. the brand has no control or input as to how it may be featured. Should I accept a gift as “payment” for including some brand directed content, I’ll make this clear in the post. 

All gifts in any instance are declared in blog posts, Instagram feed posts and in Stories frames. 

If it’s something that was gifted as part of a previous paid for collaboration and it’s making a reappearance, I’ll tell you. 

The CMA guidelines state that anything gifted in the last year time is considered a relevant time frame for declaration so those are the timelines that I work with. 

A word on beauty products (gifted or otherwise): 

Here’s the thing - I’m not a beauty blogger, nor am I a beauty expert. I am however a midlife woman who LOVES a really good beauty product!  

If you see me mention a product on this blog it’s because my user experience is really good - i.e. it makes me feel good or it makes my skin/hair/whatever feel nice. And I like seeing it in on my bathroom shelf in the morning too! In all probability, it won’t make me look ten years younger/erase my wrinkles or make my hair look like spun silk - I just like using it and it does a decent job. Which is the basis upon which I believe most of us buy our beauty products. 

Events, Press Trips, Free Travel or Accommodation 

If I attend any of the above and write about it here on the blog or over on Instagram, I’ll declare it in simple terms. 

You may or may not agree with these guidelines and rules but I believe they actually make bloggers and content creators more transparent than some of the mainstream media. So I’m happy to abide by them.  

Simple in essence. 

If you have any questions about any of this, please drop me an email. The same applies if you feel I’ve not declared a partnership here or in social media clearly enough. You can email me at:  amanda@simplystartliving.com.

Further Information 

Guidelines from the CMA around blogging and social media endorsements

The ASA Influencer’s Guide To Making Clear What Is An Ad

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