6 Oct 2015

The do’s and don’ts of blogger outreach

Manuella Haddad – Junior Account Executive at Spreckley

Today, blogger outreach is an essential part of your marketing plan. Whether you are raising brand awareness, or launching a new product, it is increasingly likely that at some point your campaign will involve reaching out to them.

Blog readers tend to approach content in a far more interactive way than they do with more traditional publications. For example, when someone mentions your brand on a blog post, there is much more potential for conversations to spread quickly and easily among your target audience, than from working solely with journalists in publications. If you’re not participating in blogger outreach, you’re missing an opportunity to spread your brand’s message among highly targeted consumer groups.

It doesn’t matter whether you’re an agency, brand or individual seller, your outreach tactic will greatly benefit if you follow these rules:

Do use their name

Addressing a blogger by their name is a common courtesy, and also essential if you don’t want to end up in their ‘spam’ folder. Addressing the email to ‘blogger’ or by their blog name shows that you’re not thinking about them as a person, and this will ruin the chance of building up a relationship with them. By targeting them individually instead of adding their details onto distribution lists, you will ensure positive feedback for your brand or product.

Do check their niche

There are so many niches out there that it is very important that you do your research and look at blog traffic and Twitter followers. It is also important to look at how aligned a blogger’s content is with your messaging. An easy way to check this is to see what topics the blogger actively writes about – but remember, if a blogger posts about recipes for example, it doesn’t necessarily mean their blog is a match for an organic food brand – bloggers can be very specific.

Don’t ask for something for nothing

Most bloggers will spend time and money on their blog, so if you ask them to promote your product or brand in return for nothing then it is likely to be taken as an insult. There should always be something the blogger will receive from the collaboration, whether that’s a product, exclusive information or discount codes.

Do ask for feedback

If you’ve played by the rules and the blogger still doesn’t want to work with you – that’s okay, as long as you learn from it and understand why they don’t want to work with you. It could be that they are busy at the moment, or the brand doesn’t reflect their blog. Finding out why will help you to improve on your future outreach.

Don’t be unrealistic

Many bloggers will have a full time job, with their blog as a second job or a hobby. It is therefore unrealistic to expect a spontaneous reply or action from a blogger, especially those with children or in education. When you liaise with them, let them know your ideal deadline and ask if they will be able to make it – if not, try negotiating something reasonable for you both.

Do build a relationship

One benefit of working with bloggers is the opportunity you have to build a relationship with them. Always try to read their blog as this will help to get to know the blogger and comment on their latest posts when you talk to them as this will show that you are interested in their content.

Bloggers have changed the nature of the news and information people consume since blogging allows for more reader-driven content than a traditional newspaper. Bloggers have given readers a much wider range of news sources to choose from and it’s made news travel faster than ever so make sure your next campaign targets them specifically.