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November 6, 2014

Blogger Relations: My 5 tips for a successful cooperation

Blogger Relations: A term that has been used very often in public relations these days. This is not surprising, as more and more companies are discovering the world of blogs for themselves and are exploiting their potential as a successful marketing tool. Just like the Facebook page or Twitter channel, blogposts about products and services can be an important factor for a company’s digital communication strategy. Reach, unique visitors and advertorials: These are just some terms that play an important role in blogger relations, also called Social Media Influencer Relations. Since I have been very busy working with bloggers lately, I would like to give you some tips, rules and facts for a successful collaboration.

 1. Find the right blogger for your company

Before randomly selecting and addressing bloggers, companies should always answer certain questions in order to approach influencers with a clear vision about the cooperation: What kinds of blogs are exciting for my product or my service? Which influencer is of interest for my company? What is the concept behind that blog? Which topics do the bloggers cover and how do they work? Once you and your team have answered these questions, you’re set. Most bloggers already provide a clear indication on their website about working with companies. The more you can get to know in advance about the blogger and his cooperation policies, the more precious time you save in the initial contact.

2. Mutual information is half the battle

Once you have contacted the bloggers, it is helpful to supply them with as much information as possible for a successful cooperation. You should definitely be aware that the blogger might not know anything or only very little about your company or services. In this case the following applies: The more the better but well prepared and clearly structured. Unnecessary regulations or rules could discourage many bloggers as they don’t like to sell their voice and opinion. An important factor is trust. Take your time to get to know each other. In most cases a phone call is much more helpful than an email.

 3. Choose a wide time window

In Germany, professional bloggers are not as well established as for example in the United States. So if you as a company chose to do social media influencer relations, you should be aware that many bloggers do this in their spare time. In addition, there will always be a number of factors from the first contact to the final blog post that delays the schedule and thus requires a lot of patience and time. Thus, it can take one or two months until a partnership comes to a successful end. Especially in the early phase bloggers can cancel the cooperation on short notice, either from lack of interest or time. Give the bloggers as much space as possible in order to deal intensively with your product or service. In this way an honest basis for a successful collaboration is created.

 4. Friendly manners are a must

Blogger relations can be compared to a friendship and are characterized by a mutual give and take. Do not forget that it is you and your company who want something from the influencers and who want to benefit from blogger relations. Therefore, you should actively offer your support. Note that bloggers are not service providers but first and foremost brand ambassadors, who start a cooperation with conviction and interest in the product or the service. Courtesy and respect should be essential for dealing with bloggers.

 5. Create incentives

A cooperation contract clearly states the rights and obligations for each contractor. It should also be noted exactly what condition the bloggers receive as a compensation. You shouldn’t forget that many bloggers live from their blogs or that a large part of their income is based on their blog. Therefore it must be worth something to you and your company to win over the targeted influencers. This can be a product that is made available to the bloggers and/or a certain budget. In the end a positive review of your product or service can only be a win for your company as the web never forgets!

Foto: Taro Yamamoto CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

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Stefanie Möser
Senior-Beraterin bei Mashup Communications
Ein Prise Gelassenheit, eine große Ladung Humor und viel Herz und Verstand: Das ist Steffis Geheimrezept für die perfekte Team-Power. Ihre Top-Tools sind immer griffbereit: Stift und Papier, denn die besten Geschichten finden sich nicht am Büro-Schreibtisch.