There’s no denying that bloggers are quickly becoming respected for their influence. Brands are starting to come around when it comes to working with bloggers to get the word out about their products. According to Technorati’s State of the Blogosphere 2011 study, more brands than ever are writing product reviews, giving advice about products, giving products away or offering sponsored content on their blogs. Big companies are doing more of this than small ones, but that’s no reason you shouldn’t get ahead of the curve.
Consider Bloggers Your Marketing Army
Consumers are listening to bloggers more than they’re paying attention to traditional advertising, there’s no denying that. Here’s how bloggers can make your brand shine.
1. They’re Talking About You Anyway
In this social world, people are talking about brands they love (and hate). Why not harness that to develop a long-lasting relationship that goes beyond a few tweets and create a true brand evangelist that can influence others to buy your products?
2. Working With Them Makes Them Feel Special
If you approach the relationship the right way, that is. If you do your homework, finding out what a blogger has been writing or tweeting about, you can go a long way to show you cared enough to research them. Don’t offer a one-size-fits-all proposal on how you can work together. Instead, invite them to contribute ideas on a collaboration.
3. A Little Respect (and Cash) Can Go a Long Way
Bloggers get pitched a lot. And they get pitched poorly. By really getting to know a blogger, you instantly create reciprocal respect. Also, I’m big on paying bloggers for their time, and not all companies have the same attitude. I guarantee, if you offer some kind of compensation other than product, they’ll bend over backwards for you!
Bloggers want to interact with your brand, no matter if you sell software, toys or services. The key is in identifying bloggers that influence your market and building relationships with them. After a few months of effort, you may see that blogger outreach exceeds expectations for other types of more traditional marketing!