Working with bloggers can be a powerful way to improve and help your marketing strategy thrive. They can really impact your business in a variety of ways, and the whole experience should be a pleasant one for all involved. This is, so long as you approach blogger relations with due care and attention, ensuring to stick to these key dos and don’ts:
Select Bloggers Carefully and Build Meaningful Relationships
Blogger or influencer marketing should be viewed as a collaborative process, and so you need to carefully consider who you decide to approach. You should find bloggers that you think fit with your brand (or where you desire your brand to be), produce content that you like and most importantly, are relevant to your target audience. If you’re an arts and crafts store for example, approaching a DIY blogger would make more sense than a fashion blogger.
Look At Engagement Not Followers
As with most things in life, quality not quantity is where the real value lies. When you are researching bloggers to work with, look at their engagement rate (social media comments, consistency and authenticity) rather than the number of followers that they have. ‘Micro-influencers’, bloggers 10k or less followers can sometimes bring more to the table than one with 100k plus.
Ask If They Charge For Their Services
A lot of work goes into creating blog content, social media posts and videos and whilst not all bloggers charge for this, some do. Never assume that a blogger will do something for free just because they are getting a product. Always ask what their rates are, or if you have no budget to pay them, tell them this upfront. If you are a small business with a great ethos but a small marketing budget, bloggers will understand and support you anyway. If they have to charge, due to time restrictions/labour costs, then at least you have established a relationship for later down the line.
Send Out Mass Generic Emails
Bloggers want to work with brands that they feel a connection to. Either they really like your product, your store or your brand. They have to feel a personal or creative connection to want to collaborate on a project with you. Every email you send out should be personalised and relevant to the blogger. Why should they work with you? What is it about their blog that you like? If you send out a mass of generic emails, bloggers will know that you have sent the same thing to 100 others, and are very unlikely to get back to you.
Dictate Exactly What You Want
The reason that bloggers have such large audiences, is because they have their own way of doing things. They are uniquely creative at making content that their followers want to read and see. If you work with them on a project, maybe a guest post or a review, that content needs to remain true to their original style. Their followers will not engage well with a blog post that looks like an advert or doesn’t ‘sound like’ the blogger that they know and love.
Therefore, when you approach a blogger don’t tell them exactly what you want. Instead treat it as a collaboration. Give the blogger space to come up with their own ideas and you’ll achieve a much more authentic outcome.
Burn Your Bridges
Blogging is a community, and a lot of bloggers are friends with one another which is wonderful when they find a brand or store that they really like. They will spread the news like wildfire! However, when they have a bad experience with a brand they will talk about this as well. So, always be polite, diplomatic and reasonable. If you are not seeing eye-to-eye with a blogger, it’s best to put the collaboration on hold or see if there is another way to make it work.
Which bloggers do you really want to work with?
Let us know: firstname.lastname@example.org – Subject: Bloggers