How to Find and Hire a Blogger to Work With Your Brand
Bloggers have now surpassed mass media entities, and even Facebook, as influencers in consumers’ purchase decisions. Bloggers rank third in influence just behind Retail Sites and Brand Sites. The personal experiences of bloggers, and the audiences they influence with their blog posts and social media promotion, are more valuable than ever to brands. Bloggers share their opinion as if they were a trusted friend, and they in fact are to their readers and followers – your customers and future customers.
Hire bloggers by doing the research yourself
You know your brand best, so you know what kind of voice would amplify your brand best. Search for your brand’s name or product in Google. See who is already talking about you, just because they like you. Those bloggers who already love, use, and talk about your product are your biggest fans. They will be your most dedicated brand ambassadors.
Once you identify your brand on a blogger’s post, go comment on the post. Start a relationship with these bloggers by giving them the compliment of acknowledgement. Follow and talk to them in social media. Build this relationship the way you would with a friend.
Hire bloggers through a blogger job bulletin board
List your job (your desired blog post) on a blogger job board like Business2Blogger, and it gets put in front of thousands of bloggers who can then choose to apply for the project. You control the project; this service just makes meeting bloggers who are already predisposed to working with you easier.
Hire bloggers through a blogger organization
Hire a group that represents bloggers like The Motherhood to do all the heavy lifting. Blog organizations can identify, vet, and do all of the project management for you.
Hire bloggers through an ad network
Most professional bloggers are part of an ad network like Glam. Ad networks usually also have an authorship program in which their more talented writers can be hired to write to a prompt, or about a product or event, as a part of an ad buy.
Hire bloggers through an affiliate marketing network
If your brand is a retailer with an affiliate marketing program, you’ve already got a built-in base of bloggers talking about you. Work with an affiliate marketing company like Commission Junction to target a number of these bloggers with a sponsored post, giveaway, exclusive code, or other premium content program.
Bigger is not always better.
Whether you’re a PR firm, an interactive agency, or a brand manager, the practice of relying on sources like Klout, Alexa or PRChecker to choose your bloggers will only get you so far. Bigger is not always better when it comes to bloggers. Ranking systems can be gamed or just plain wrong. None of those analytics will tell you how many email subscribers a blogger has or how a blogger uses different social media platforms and blogging networks to promote their posts.
And none of those systems will tell you how much a blogger loves your particular brand.
You must visit a blogger’s site and engage with them in social media. Get to know them and their writing voice. When you develop a relationship with affinity bloggers that “get” your brand and talk about it in ways that reinforce your brand’s vision, it’s a win for everyone.