We’re excited to introduce you to the always interesting and insightful Jennifer Dwyer. We hope you’ll enjoy our conversation with Jennifer below.
Jennifer, thanks for taking the time to share your stories with us today Let’s start with a fun one – what’s something you believe that most people in your industry (or in general) disagree with?
I do not believe in taking “free product” for content creation exchange. A lot of content creators and influencers welcome “free product” because they view it as something they do not have to pay for out of their own pocket. A lot of people first starting out think “well I need to build my library or make my presence known so I will take this being offered”. I on the other hand do not agree with this, regardless of if you’re just starting out, and here is why.
Every brand, every seller, every PR company has a budget. Often they have a budget PER product or per campaign. Social media marketing is at an all time high and continues to grow. Consumers do not watch commercials or read magazines like they used to. Today, they’re glued to their phones watching other people who are just like them. You should be paid for everything you create AND get the product.
I will also point out, that if it was a product I really wanted or felt others would want I would have no issue in buying it myself to do an honest review of it. Furthermore, if I know I can sell the product it is an easy negotiation to obtain the product for free AND be paid by the brand because I know my audience and I know I can sell it.
I tell all of the brands, sellers, and PR companies that approach us that I have to review the products they are wanting content created for, before I will sign any agreements. I learned this lesson the hard way when I first started out. I was stuck in a cycle of creating content for products that I myself could not get them to work, they would arrive broken, tasted awful, or once we got them we would laugh and say “this is not at all what was explained we would be receiving”. Your audience can see right through you. You need to stay true to YOU regardless of what the product is. So if I have things I wish the product did, that I feel would make it better, I’m going to mention it to my audience. I’m not going to pretend it’s the most wonderful thing if it falls apart the moment I touch it.
As a consumer AND a content creator I know that buyers are not dumb. They can tell if you really believe in something or you’re just putting it in your livestream because someone sent it to you.
I have been in a lot of groups and communities where the leaders of the group push newcomers first getting into content creation to take a lot of these “free products” for promoting. They in turn are also getting a kickback by feeding these innocents to the PR companies that their marketing strategy is to have hundreds of people livestreaming or posting about the same products so that hopefully they can sell some of them. How many times have you seen something on TikTok, then you see it 3 more times and think “gosh everyone has one of these maybe I should check it out”?
The power of persuasion. If you see something enough, it may stick. Then if you see if while out shopping or online shopping you’ve already been introduced to it a handful of times and now, maybe you’ll buy it. I read once that the average consumer needs to be introduced to a product (if it is new) seven to ten times before they will commit to purchasing it. The best way to do this before the consumer is somewhere that they can buy, is via social media.
My theory is that if a product is good for your niche, your audience, is a good seller for YOU, you should be building a term agreement with a brand to continue placing that product in front of your audience those 7 to 10 times yourself. If a brand is looking to sell a lunch container to parents, why wouldn’t they want to work with someone who’s target audience is parents with a proven selling record to that audience? Sure you can send that lunch container to 100 people, 1/2 of them MIGHT be parents, another 1/4 of that MIGHT have an audience that buys. But now they’re posting it 1 time of the ten times their audience needs to see it. Where is the other 9 times for just those people?
I think brands and PR companies need to narrow down content creators by niche, content specialty, audience, and the other type of products they are good at selling. And I think creators need to sell themselves as specialty area experts. What we do is a business, a BIG business right now. So why would you do work for Free?
Great, appreciate you sharing that with us. Before we ask you to share more of your insights, can you take a moment to introduce yourself and how you got to where you are today to our readers
My name is Jennifer, I am an Amazon Influencer and Content Creator. I started on social media documenting my lifestyle change into a low carb and ketogenic food journey, while I was pregnant. I would blog about the best products I was finding (aka what tasted good) how to make them and what ingredients worked best together. Trial and error on my end, and then documenting it, at first for myself. If I wanted to go back and make the same keto pancakes, “What did I use last time they tasted good?” it was all right there on my website in the easy recipe section. Then when I started losing weight and my bloodwork got better, family and friends wanted the recipes or information on how to get started too.
My content quickly went from tagging ingredients, pots and pans, and low carb products to all of a sudden “yall aren’t going to believe this ice maker I got and how great the ice it!” A new career was born!
I am a details and data person. I used to work in Clinical Business Management and Pharmaceutical Manufacturing facilities, on the Operations side. When I got pregnant, I was replaced by multiple workers before I even left on leave. No one was expecting me to come back and when I did, there was not a job for me. They waited 1 month and 1 day before they moved me to a team reporting to someone whom I had embarrassed enough over the years for them to definitely not want me on their team. Which by the way I was one of, if not the only “Exceeds performer” on the team before I went out on leave. When someone goes to Senior leadership and literally cries because you’re being placed on their team, and then tells everyone not to train you because they “have no intent to keep you anyway”, the writing is more than right in front of you.
Being a data person though, I knew that without data. it’s just your opinion (and often a lie, if there is no supporting data). As a consumer, I am always looking for information on a product before I buy it. Is there a video about this thing? Are there reviews? Does anyone show themselves wearing this? Is there a real life photo? Does anyone show how this works? These are all things that I want to know or see about items I buy.
So, I started doing just that , but for other people. I make short TO THE POINT video reviews that are uploaded to Amazon and YouTube – sometimes even Instagram Reels or TikToks about Amazon Finds. I have Parent Hack products, Amazon finds of the day, New product reviews – what does it do? what do I wish it did?
I love what I do because I think it helps people spend money wisely. I don’t want to try and sell someone who cannot afford a vacuum a vacuum for my own gain. But, if that vacuum going through your house just freed up time for you to go do homework, or gives you back an hour of your free time, or when you’re away from your house you can drive that vacuum to go check on your pet that was sick the night before, I’m going to show you that THIS vacuum can do those things. I show product features, and oh by the way here is how easy the set up is, and here is how long it took me. It’s all DATA. It’s information in a short quick manner, such as an under 2 min video. p.s. You’re usually going to get my opinion too.
I will answer consumer’s questions LIVE on Amazon Live. I treat my content like a waterfall. My audience will start seeing photos of products first, then they will see set up or unboxing videos. Then I am going to use the product for awhile and once I know the product and can answer questions you’ll see it on my Amazon Live livestream. This is where You can come and ask me anything about it. I love my community and followers we have so much fun. I often host Giveaways – yes brands will sponsor my stream and Giveaway product(s). We play trivia about my Livestream for entries into Giveaways. Come and join us at KetosisMom.live on Amazon Live. You can “tap follow” to see when I am going Live. If you’re looking to save money I can help with that too, I always ask for promo codes for my streams (only valid while I am live) and highlight current deals. My entire family will often be on Amazon Live.
I am a DATA person. What is the data on this item? You can find it all on amazon.com/shop/ketosismom storefront page.
You can find me on multiple platforms!
Instagram, YouTube, Tiktok, Twitter – @KetosisMom
Pinterest, facebook – @TheKetosisMom
Blog + Discounts +Recipes = KetosisMom.net
Amazon Influencer Storefront: amazon.com/shop/ketosismom
Amazon Live: KetosisMom.live
LTK – liketoknow.it/livinglargeinlilly
Is there something you think non-creatives will struggle to understand about your journey as a creative?
I often hear from people in my family (non creatives) “won’t your audience feel like you sold out if you take a brand deal to post about their products?”
The long and short of it is, Yes and No.
Yes in a sense that often people see a “paid sponsorship” label or #ad and think well they were just paid to do this. And in a lot of cases I am sure many creators take any and all deals thrown at them. They take the money and run.
In my case though, I say No. It is No for me, I am not a “sell out” if I work with a brand BECAUSE I am very picky about who I work with and for what reasons. Do I use their product already? Do I like their product? Would I or do I already buy it anyway? Are they offering a benefit to my audience?
Emails come in on a daily basis for content work. 8/10 of them are turned down form MY END.
My husband (Joe) even asks “did you take that deal that came in with the 10 products?” When I say no, he often scoffs. It is something that I do, and stick to, that not everyone else does.
Looking back, are there any resources you wish you knew about earlier in your creative journey?
Absolutely! There is so much “unknown”. You all already know I am a “data person” right?
I wanted to know, How can I do this? What can I use to do this? What’s the most user friendly? How can I find brands or sellers to work with? What do I do? What do I say? What do all these words in this contract even mean?
Are there platforms for this?
It’s all out there! You just have to find it. You have to take the time to search for answers. It for sure it not going to be handed to you. I learned this. It is work, a lot of digging and sometimes it is digging yourself in a hole you don’t want to be in. Climb out and keep going.
Find a community of creators that you can bounce things off of. My advice is to sit, watch, and listen for a beat and make sure it’s going to be for you. Take golden nuggets from them all.
Find a system you like to use or like to shop from/on. Apply to their programs. Go through their onboarding training. Amazon has an amazing creator program. LiketoKnow.it has one of the top shopping platforms. Other shopping platforms are starting to livestream as well.
There are multiple platforms for creators to connect to brands. Set up a profile and forget about it. One day it may bring you something unexpected.
And who knows maybe I’ll put together a “How to become a Creator” class one day.
- Website: ketosismom.net
- Instagram: instagram.com/ketosismom
- Facebook: facebook.com/theketosismom
- Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/ketosis-mom/
- Twitter: twitter.com/ketosismom
- Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/c/ketosismom
- Other: liketoknow.it/livinglargeinlilly Amazon Storefront: amazon.com/shop/ketosismom Amazon Live: ketosismom.live