Blogs have become an important piece of the media landscape. Reaching out to bloggers to gain coverage can be a good way to increase brand awareness, spread your message, and eventually gain more leads and sales.
Whether you’re pitching to bloggers to get your new product reviewed or to offer them an exclusive, it’s important to make sure you follow these 9 helpful tips so your pitch is as well received as possible.
1. Build a relationship with the blogger. Before you start blindly pitching to bloggers, try to find ways to introduce yourself and start building a relationship with the blogger. You can do this by leaving comments on their blog, connecting with them on Twitter, etc. This way, whenever you make your pitch, the blogger at least kind of knows who you are.
2. Know what the blogger writes about. Some bloggers get dozens of pitches every single week. A lot of these pitches are garbage because they’re completely irrelevant. Before you make a pitch, make sure you know what the blogger writes about, and make sure your story fits within the scope of their blog. You can even mention a little something about a post they recently made to show that you know their blog.
3. Know the blog’s audience. One of the things that’s unique about the blogosphere is that the readers have just as much say as the authors. Readers get to voice their opinions on content, so bloggers are always trying to deliver content their readers will love. With that in mind, it’s important that you get to know the blog’s audience before making your pitch. Spend some time browsing comments to get a feel for the type of content they react to.
4. Get the blogger’s name right. Seriously. It’s not that hard.
5. Personalize your pitch. Don’t send out form letters to bloggers. No blogger wants to feel like one of a thousand bloggers being pitched. Personalize your pitch to the blogger so they know you aren’t just sending the same email to every single blogger out there.
6. Keep it short. Bloggers are busy people. Not only do they have to spend time updating and maintaining their blogs, but they also have to sift through pitches on a daily basis. In other words, they don’t have time to read a long pitch from you. Keep your pitch as brief and to the point as possible. Don’t get bogged down in trivial details.
7. Focus on the benefits. Pitching should never be a one-way street. It’s not all about you. The blogger needs to have something to gain from your pitch as well. Whether that’s increased web traffic or happier readers, let the blogger know how doing what you ask will help them out.
8. Know when no really means no. Don’t be a pest. Nobody owes you anything. And if the blogger doesn’t want to give you coverage, you can’t force them to do so. Be respectful and polite, and know when it’s time to walk away.
9. Consider offering an exclusive. Bloggers are always looking for an edge over competing blogs. By giving them an “exclusive”, you can give the blogger a strong incentive for accepting your pitch and granting you valuable coverage. Just make sure you truly keep your word on the exclusive and don’t offer it to others.
What are some of your guidelines you follow when pitching bloggers?
This article is written by Mickie Kennedy, founder of eReleases (http://www.ereleases.com), the online leader in affordable press release distribution. Download a free copy of the PR Checklist – a 24 point list of Press Release Dos and Don’ts here: http://www.ereleases.com/prchecklist.html