Written by Candice Kilpatrick
Want a piece of the new media pie? Bloggers are a great place to start. They are professional, knowledgeable, influential and for hire.
How do you land a blogger that is both a great fit for the campaign and will deliver the goods?
There are three main phases for ethically snagging a great blogger: Investigation, Communication and Compensation.
Investigation, or “Stalking” is time consuming but a necessary step of the blogger hiring process.
First, identify your niche. Bloggers exist in every niche, ever. Try to think of a niche that a blog is unlikely to be written on, and google “(unlikely thing) blog”.
Exhibit A: the taxidermy blog http://www.ravishingbeasts.com.
No matter the blog niche, use your stalking skills to find a cache of bloggers. Search twitter, twitter lists, industry conference hashtags, google.
When you find a blog that resonates with your target audience, stalk the people who are following it.
Like begets like.
Once you have identified a blogger who you think might be a good fit for your campaign, stalk them more.
Read a variety of their most recent blog posts, the content of their tweets, the amount of followers on each platform, the comments on their blog posts, Google their blog name, their name, check out the Instagram feed and their Facebook page.
Make sure there is no controversy surrounding the name of the blog or blogger.
Check that their content is at a level that you think could represent your brand to their audience in a way that is in line with your goals.
Now you are ready to contact the blogger. Time for Communication!
Bloggers are self-employed. They are used to working by themselves and they cannot read your mind. Bloggers appreciate clear and concise communication regarding
· What exactly it is you want them to do
· How exactly will this benefit them
Do you want them to write a blog post? How many words? How many photos? What are the key messaging points to be included in the blog post? Should they write a tweet? What about a Facebook post? Use a certain hashtag or keywords or phrases?
Lay it ALL out in a logical manner. Don’t make them guess. Bloggers are far to busy to do your job for you. The most successful bloggers are in high demand and are selective about who they choose to work with.
Give them every reason to say YES to you!
Gone are the Wild West days when bloggers worked for free, for link swap or for coupons.
As someone providing a service to you (amplifying your brand message on their carefully cultivated social channels), bloggers expect to be compensated.
When contacting the blogger to propose the partnership, make an offer. They are free to accept, reject or counter.
Do not contact a blogger and ask them to spam their audience.
This is an example of a real PR pitch that was ignored by bloggers everywhere. Names changed to protect the innocent:
Hi CanCan, Just wanted to share a few the latest family-friendly deals and happenings from A Cool Tourist Place Out West! I thought you may be interested in sharing them with your Mom’s Most Traveled readers. In addition to the deals, below is an image of the mountains At The Cool Tourist Place, so you can get a feel for how breathtaking the scenery is.
I’m happy to answer any questions or provide additional information, images and video, if interested!
This pitch offered no compensation and no communication. What do they want the blogger to do? Something like this:
Hello readers! Look, the mountains of the west!
NE WAYZ! Back to blogging! LYLAS!
By sticking to the formula of Investigation, Communication and Compensation, you can avoid pointless exercises like the above pitch and land incredible reach and impressive impressions with top-notch influencers!