As door-openers to brands, PR people can be great partners for bloggers. Here are 10 tips on how to make the most of the relationship.
When I started my PR career many (too many) years ago, we were the ones doing the pitching. We’d reach out with story ideas to media on behalf of our clients promoting ways for brands and products to be favourably received and seen.
But with dwindling resources in the traditional media world and a digital revolution that has led to the influence of social media and talented bloggers like you, it’s all changed.
Of course, we still work with media, but increasingly, PR people are the ones being pitched by bloggers interested in collaborating with the brands we represent.
So, what’s the best way to get in front of PR professionals and their clients? Our team came up with this Top Ten list for your consideration. Happy pitching and good luck.
- Know your own brand. What do you stand for? Are you a food specialist, a DIY diva or do you chronicle your latest home design project? Develop your elevator pitch describing what you are passionate about, what’s unique about you and why a brand should care? If you can’t clearly articulate to us who you are, we can’t describe you to the brand.
- Make a brand wish list. Put together a list of the brands you would love to work with and then add a column and fill in why they should work with you. Communicate this clearly to the PR people you are pitching.
- Engage with the brands you love. Once you’ve identified your brand wish list, become part of their community. Begin following all of their social channels – comment, post and share their content. Brands are looking for ambassadors who get their brands and are enthusiastic advocates – so be loud and proud.
- Do your research. Follow the business of the brands you crave to work with (and their competitors). Check out the brand’s website, read media stories about the company, set up Google news alerts so you can keep up. This will help you understand if there are new initiatives underway or a strategic focus that you can leverage in your conversation with the PR team.
- Help us sell you. In your own personal style, present us with a package that demonstrates your distinct attributes and social clout. Describe the reach and engagement levels with your blog and your other social channels. Tell us if you have been featured in mainstream media. Are you media trained? Do you do your own photography? What other brands have you partnered with? Show us examples.
- Know your competition. We know that the blogging community is one born from collaboration and support for each other. But with the explosion of bloggers there are so many for brands to choose from – so you need to stand out. Make sure you are keeping up with best practices in the industry and constantly evolving and innovating.
- Be prepared to do something for free. Sometimes the best way to demonstrate to a PR person how you could represent a brand is to show them. Consider writing a complimentary blog post for the brand to show how your passions comes to life.
- Be selective. While it is tempting and exciting to be courted by brands, think about the company you keep. Work with the brands you respect and will add value to your brand.
- Be a pro. PR people need to advocate to a brand that you are a great partner and not only a brilliant content creator. That means you need to be responsive, professional and typo-free.
- Understand that this is a symbiotic relationship. PR people want and need to collaborate with bloggers. The brands we represent are increasingly leveraging bloggers to create connections with consumers. So don’t be shy about what you have to offer.
(PHOTO SOURCE: “Pick Me – Stock Trading” by OTA Photos. Creative Commons. https://www.flickr.
Hear more from Cynthia during her BlogPodium session, Do’s and Don’ts of Making your Blog Irresistible to Brands. When brands look at all the talented bloggers out there, what sets you apart? As door-openers to brands, PR people can be great partners for bloggers. In this workshop, learn from a seasoned communications specialist who evaluates blogger partnerships on behalf of some pretty cool brands. Learn the do’s and don’ts of making you and your blog stand out.