A while ago I wrote a post about how bloggers could make some small changes to help them work with brands (if they so wanted). If you’re interested, you can check it out here. Written with my PR hat on, there were some basic things, easy things to fix, that drive me nuts when I’m trying to organise blogger outreach campaigns.
I did promise though, that I would take that hat off and swap it round, and give some tips back the other way. And after a week of less than fabulous pitches from PR agencies landing in my inbox, I figured it was time.
Every blogger who has even dabbled in sponsored posts will have received at least one bad pitch.
For me, I’ve lost count of the amount of times I’ve been offered nappies, dummies and breast feeding accessories to review. My child is nine. I’m not planning any more. If you send me a pitch for these products, even after I clearly state on my ‘work with me page‘ that I’m not interested, don’t expect a polite response.
It simply shows me that you haven’t taken the time to read my blog, not even once. Not even a cursory glance. I do blogger outreach as part of my job, it’s not that hard. Click through the link on the excel spreadsheet and actually take a look. I promise the bloggers will thank you for it and who knows, you may discover some amazing blogs in the process.
So here are some quick tips that PR agencies and brands could do to greatly improve the success of your campaigns.
- As above READ THE BLOG at least once. Look at the disclosure page, the advertising page, the contact me and the about me page. From those things (or the variations of them), most bloggers will have included everything you need to know. If they say they don’t want to be contacted about a particular product/theme/item then don’t contact them. You’re wasting their time and yours.
- Your time is not more important than theirs. Simple. Be respectful.
- Bloggers are not looking for content. If they choose to write about your brand, even if you’re paying them, it’s a privilege. You’re gaining access to their trusted, engaged audiences and most bloggers, even with payment won’t blog about your product unless they believe in you.
- Pay them. Or at least be open to the conversation. Bloggers who have chosen to monetise are not earned media, they are more akin to advertorial. It’s your responsibility to sell that into the organisations that you’re working with; help them understand the unique value that bloggers can add to your brand. There are lots of resources out there to help with this, but if you need stats to help get it across the line, check out this great article.
- Do as you say you’re going to do. This is a similar tip that I also gave the bloggers and it stands in both directions. If you say you’ll promote their post, then do it. If you say you’ll get them information by a certain date, do it. It builds credibility and respect.
Tell me, what have I missed? Have you had a terrible pitch?