The blogosphere is HUGE. There are 227 million blogs on Tumblr and 75.8 million on WordPress (these are free blogging websites) and even more on Blogger and those using unique URLS. You can find a blog on every subject, from specific hobbies to general topics such as food or parenting. This huge blog world also means opportunities to help you grow your business! Let’s talk about why and how.
Why should you engage with bloggers?
- From the aforementioned numbers, it’s a big network. You’re bound to find a subject that fits with your business.
- Your potential audience is more likely to believe the recommendation coming from someone other than you. This is word-of-mouth marketing. Instead of sharing tips at the water cooler, it’s online.
- Bloggers have influence through a loyal readership. Depending on the blog’s focus, a blog can have hundreds to millions of followers that engage with it.
- Bloggers have social media influence. To increase readership and connect with their readers in on other platforms, bloggers also grow their social media presence.
- Great bloggers are serious about their work. They work with honesty and integrity and they’re willing to work with brands that fit their blog.
What are the ideal results in engaging with bloggers?
- Your ideal audience is educated about your brand and product.
- Bloggers write blog and social media posts raving about your product and brand.
- Increase awareness about your brand because your ideal customers saw a blogger’s post.
- Increase ROI because your ideal customers who saw the bloggers’ posts bought in.
- Increase customer loyalty because now actual customers return.
- Increase awareness because actual customers write social media posts and give verbal recommendations to network.
[For more on what to expect from bloggers, see my truth about bloggers and blog content post on my lifestyle blog Fearless Captivations.]
What will it cost you?
It depends. For brands with physical products, it involves you gifting a product. (Think pieces of clothing for fashion bloggers, a meal for food bloggers, etc.) In some situations, bloggers are compensated.
Ok, so now that you’ve decided that the blogger network is the best way to increase your customer base, here’s how to utilize it.
1. Perfect your product.
Is your product in its best form possible? When a blogger sees/uses/enjoys your product, will his/her first action be to rave about it?
2. Figure out your engagement goals.
Who is your ideal customer?
What is your ideal outcome? This can include a specific number of blog and social media posts.
How will you continue the brand-blogger relationship?
3. Map out the logistics.
Will your event be online or in-person?
Why would bloggers want to participate?
What hashtag will you use to connect people on social media?
How will you measure success?
4. Create your list and send out invites.
What blogs do your ideal customer read?
Who are the bloggers?
What materials, info, graphics will you provide?
5. Engage in person or online.
Be friendly. Answer questions. Provide takeaways.
6. Follow up.
Send a thank you and feedback survey. Comment on blog and social media posts.
7. Collect data and debrief with your team.
Go back to what you decided you would use to measure success. Did you reach it?
What would you have done differently or will do differently in the future?
We’ve only skimmed the surface about bloggers and ways to go about engagement. There can be plenty more discussed. Have questions? Post a comment below or send me a message.