Six top tips for blogger outreach
The increasing consumption of digital media has made the role of the blogger much more important to PR and marketing campaigns – particularly in sectors such as fashion, retail and leisure.
As a result, brands need to make connections and build relationships through blogger outreach programmes. To get this right, many of the same rules apply as when you are pitching to journalists:
1. Do your homework
Make sure you understand what the blogger is interested in so you only target relevant individuals and can explain what is in a relationship for them. This involves taking time to research bloggers. Find out what interests them and a little about their background. They may do other things than just blog (often they are freelance journalists).
2. Build a solid relationship
Craft a tailored approach that appeals to the blogger’s interests and contact him or her as an individual. Avoid a mail merge pitch at all costs – it’s very off-putting to bloggers who will feel they are being treated as part of a procurement process. Once you’ve made contact, use social media to strengthen your relationship.
3. It’s good to talk (and stalk)
Use an RSS reader to keep abreast of what your bloggers are writing about. Google Reader is soon to close down, but you can still use an alternative like Feedly to stay in touch with your group of bloggers. These are people who write to be read (they make very little, if any money out of blogging), so knowing that you are up to speed with their output will make them more likely to engage with you.
4. Use quality content
Bloggers are no different to journalists in that they want good quality content, whether this is a strong story, an eye-catching infographic, a piece of statistic-rich research, or a nugget of sector-specific insight. You also need to speak to them like a journalist and avoid industry jargon. By communicating clearly and making your content easy to use in a blog post, you will achieve early success and entice the blogger to come back for more.
5. Follow-up on your content
Sending content and leaving the blogger to it isn’t enough. You need to emphasise and explain the importance of your content to the blogger. Again, there are similarities with journalists, who gain greater understanding of an issue by discussing its various aspects and implications with a knowledgeable source. A simple thank you when your content has been used will work wonders for your next pitch.
6. Review, review, review
Regularly review and refresh your blogger list to focus on those bloggers with whom you’ve built strong relationships. As with journalists, bloggers’ personal preferences will become apparent over time and certain styles or types of content will be more appealing to one blogger than another. Staying aware of these likes and dislikes will make a huge difference to your outcomes.
To find out how our specialists can help you to run an effective blogger outreach programme, contact us on 01772 888 400 or visit www.freshfield.com