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Irish Hotel Publicly Shames Social Media Influencer for Requesting Free Stay 'Maybe I should tell my staff they will be featured in your video in lieu of receiving payment for work carried out while you're in residence?'

By Lydia Belanger

entrepreneur daily

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Elle Darby | Youtube

The lifestyle of a globetrotting blogger/influencer -- traveling the world enjoying free meals, lodging, helicopter rides and more in exchange for social media promotion -- is one many aspire to. The aspirational nature of this entrepreneurial way of life is exactly why it works. People want to follow along on the fabulous journey.

That's what 22-year-old influencer Elle Darby was betting on when she emailed Paul Stenson, owner of Dublin's the White Moose Café and Charleville Lodge, requesting a complimentary stay in exchange for videos and posts on her Instagram account.

Although Darby's account has more than 80,000 followers, Stenson was not impressed. He posted a screenshot of her email to the White Moose Café's Facebook page (see below) along with a scathing note that questions the return on investment of influencer marketing in exchange for goods and services.

Related: This Former Math Teacher Now Gets Paid to Travel the World and Take Pictures of Her Meals

The post prompted Darby to upload a 17-minute video in which she describes Stenson as having "roasted" her with his "savage" Facebook caption and defends her request of the hotel, saying she had "nothing but the purest intentions."


Many fellow bloggers have taken to Facebook, Twitter and other platforms to show their support for Darby, and Stenson is running with that development, most recently posting on Facebook to announce that he's decided to ban all bloggers from setting foot in his hotel and café. Ironically, his refusal of Darby's proposal to help him gain publicity has resulted in more attention than her posts and videos ever would have garnered.

Read next: The Hotel Owner Who Called Out a Blogger for Asking for a Free Stay Now Wants $6.5 Million From Her

Lydia Belanger is a former associate editor at Entrepreneur. Follow her on Twitter: @LydiaBelanger.

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