Social Media Magazine

10 Tips for Successful Blogger Relations

Posted on the 29 May 2013 by Abhinavblog

When blogs were first established over a decade ago, they were used as a platform for an individual to share their opinions, interests and views to an audience. Without having to be trained in journalism, or being a paid employee by a publisher, a ‘blogger’ could potentially have their content read by thousands of people. As certain individuals became more prolific and well known for their opinions – whether regarding politics, film, cookery or gaming – PR professionals realised that they could be highly influential at publicising and promoting products and services. However, as a relatively new phenomena, there was little in the text book at how best to liaise with them. Here are ten tips for building successful blogger relations to ensure maximum effectiveness:

10 tips for successful blogger relations

1) It may sound obvious, but thoroughly research the blogger’s history. Read through a large number of their posts, establish what interests them and ensure they are relevant for your brand or the client you are representing.  Check for any controversial content that could reflect negatively on your brand.

2) Go beyond the blog – Google the individual to find out what is being said about them online. Perhaps they have been included in a list of Top Influential bloggers? Maybe they have had their content reproduced in traditional media, meaning their reach goes beyond the blogosphere.

3) Find out how strong their social media presence is. Influential bloggers are likely to have a high number of followers on Twitter and other channels. Bloggers by their very nature tend to be at the forefront of online technology, so it is likely the most successful ones will be members of alternative channels, such as Audioboo, that are likely to be ‘the next big thing’.

4) Check the regularity of their posts. There is little point in targeting a blogger who has not updated their page since 2012. Only target those that seem fully engaged in blogging.

5) Analyse what the best way to engage them is. Do not send a blanket email to all bloggers on your target list as they will see straight through a ‘Dear all’ cc’d message. It may be that some are more likely to respond to a product review or reader competition, while others prefer to be targeted with a potential angle for a feature.

6) Establish how the blogger likes to be contacted. Many bloggers have full time jobs, and maintain their site in their free time, so will not appreciate being telephoned during the day. It is likely  your liaison will be over email, or if you have a close relationship, over Twitter or even text message.

7) Don’t assume that because the blogger is not paid for their writing, that they will be willing to promote any brand or product in return for a freebie. Treat the blogger as you would any other journalist, and understand that it is their reputation that is at stake meaning they will only write any article if they feel 100% happy with its content.

8 ) Be creative with your PR campaign. Instead of just pitching press releases, or sending freebies, think about a more exciting activity that will engage the blogger, such as a product launch, or the chance to take part in an interactive (but fun!) workshop.

9) As you would with any journalist, follow up afterwards. If they have written an article about your product or service, drop them an email to say thank you. They will appreciate that you haven’t taken their input for granted and be sure to share the coverage over social platforms to assist them build their reach.

10) Finally, analyze your results. Not all blogs will be covered by media monitoring agencies or in search engine alerts, so make sure you regularly check for coverage. Analyse any comments to understand reader appreciation, and make note of how many followers the blogger has, so you can estimate the total influence of the article. 

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