I know I have been slacking off for say, since March with my posts. Woah. It’s been more than 5 months already!
And as one of the saying goes, if there’s a will, there’s a way. But what if there’s a will but there’s not much of a way? It’s really due to time constraints. Not that reason again. This post shall put light on the backend of me making reviews.
This is not related to anything. So if you’re looking for a review/product update/blog update of sorts, move on to the previous or next post. Purely me thinking ahead!
So how do I make product reviews again?
1. Purchase the product.
Duh. Of course I need to buy them first! Or sometimes I d get stuff for free. I would let you know if I got it for free or purchased it off my pocket. Even if I got stuff for free, I still will give you honest reviews (but if negative, just a tad mellow than my normal).
2. Take photos of the haul (before being opened).
This for my recent haul portion. Just so you know what to expect to be posted sooner or later. But more often than not, later. It doesn’t mean I purchased it now, it will be posted few days/weeks/months after. It really depends on mood and urgency of the matter.
3. Log in details in template.
I do have a make-up and skin care excel template to track the following information:
- Brand of product
- When it was purchased
- Name of product
- Price (can be selling price, or price I bought it – for items purchased under discount)
- When product was opened (sometimes, stores open it for you to see that it is not used/new item)
- When product was used
- Expiry of product (depending on when it was opened and how long product is safe to use. I have a chart of lifespan of each product type)
- Remarks (if it’s for gift or received as a gift, got for free, thrown, etc.)
- Product Category (is it skin care? make-up? hair care? foot care? tools? etc)
- Location (where it is intended to be used – eyes, face, cheek, lips, skin, hair, etc)
- With same color? (coding purposes for blogging)
- With swatches? (for me to know if I do have complete photos of the product)
- Done? (If I was able to post it already or not)
And all of these are manually encoded and tracked by me. I’m actually planning to create a program database for ease of tracking, but got really no time for me to even re-study how to make one.
4. Post on product haul.
And this is when I post a haul after writing a short description.
5. Take pictures of product (opened with swatches).
This is when I take full photos of the product – when opened, ingredients, swatches (after dispensed and after used, etc), and every possible location angle of texts for you to easily see/visualize the item. This portion takes so much time and effort. Plus, this has to be scheduled. I normally do product photos by bulk (minimum of 2, maximum of 11/12) for efficiency. A product can have as much as 20 photos, depending on packaging, texts that came with it and product type. The hardest products to take photos of in general are skin care products. But should I be specific, it would be make-up removers
6. If applicable, write product ingredients in my cosdna account.
Cosdna requires you to type each and every ingredient so that they can process it. It is not intelligent enough to correct typos, so at times I need to review the list of ingredients again when they do not have any details to match the particular ingredient. Most of the time, I do have typos but there are occasions that they don’t have details to match the particular ingredient. Skin cares, especially those that target acne, are the ones who have the longest ingredients to be typed. Let me reiterate, I do type them myself.
7. Select and edit photos.
Out of the tons of photos, I normally select 3-7 photos to be posted. One angle can have as low as 1 photo taken or as much as 7-9. Product swatches take the most number of photos taken since I have to check the lighting. I’m not a pro at photography, in fact, I have a point-and-shoot method. No science in taking pictures. I just have to ensure they look good, clear and consistent with my previous photos. After selecting photos, I crop them to the specific area for easy viewing and then put on my watermark. There are bloggers who
steal take photos which took me so much effort to make, that’s why I put my watermark. Hehehe.
8. Write a review.
And now, I write a review. It takes me as fast as 20 minutes or as long as an hour, depending on the post or product. I do research a little, especially the description of brands. I do a little proof-reading, but I’m not a writing major so typos do get by me. I also do title, category and tags alignment with my previous post for easier searching.
9. Post the review. Read it once posted. Edit if necessary.
And when I post it, I review what it looks like when posted. I would edit a post 3-4 times, on typos I missed out on proof-reading, fixing of spacing (wordpress spacing are terrible), change in category and/or tag, modification in title, hyperlinks in a post, an update, etc. Lately, I am editing my popular post for the featured image, which I normally missed out. Still a work in progress!
Phew! And now you know the backend of things. See how taxing it is to make a single review? And I do all of them alone. It is also on top of my full-time work as an analyst, a mom and a wife, writing fics and our super behind light novels/manga, avid gamer and my other personal sleeping life.
But that formula only works for product reviews/hauls. As for others I plan to write (such as gadget, games, movies, anime, food), I have to find a nice formula that I could use. I currently have TONS of foodie pics. I’m not those who just take photos and post on instagram or some networking site. I do have a purpose, not just to tell the whole internet world that, “Hey! Like me! I ate here. See how good it looks?”. No. Definitely not me. I want to share good, honest reviews of stuff especially to those who, like me, tend to search the web for answers before jumping in the decision of buying/trying it out/eating/etc. But they are not to be posted until I come up with a very, very important and costly decision.
I am sometimes the
fool risk-taker just because I am so curious at stuff. All for the love of curious things, writing and stuff!
Your thoughts on posting? Share them below.