So, you’ve decided to include bloggers in your PR and online marketing strategy. Great! Working with bloggers can be a cost-effective way to increase brand awareness, reach your target audience, maintain customer loyalty, build quality backlinks (for SEO purposes) and ultimately, increase product sales. But, how do you find quality bloggers?
Anyone can set up a blog and start writing, but how do you find bloggers that will be good ambassadors for your brand and give you the best ROI? As a blogger and a marketing and social media professional by trade, I have seen the good, the bad and the downright ugly. Here are some tips.
Finding quality fashion and beauty blogs:
- Look for blogs that have been around for more than 6 months – many bloggers start with great intentions and quickly lose interest when they find out how much work is involved in maintaining a blog.
- Look for good writing. Do you want spelling errors, incomplete sentences and other grammar flubs to be associated with your brand?
- Do past reviews include links to the brands’ websites? If there is a particular keyword you would like to include with a link back to your website, feel free to ask. Many bloggers will be happy to add one or two links of your choice. Be sure to ask for this before you send the product(s) for review.
- Monthly views, page rank, Klout scores and social media followers are important – find out the blog’s reach. Look for a good number of reader comments and social media shares/retweets to determine if the readers are engaged.
- Popular blogs are great and should be included in your marketing strategy. However, don’t overlook niche blogs that may target your audience more directly. For example, a review of running shoes from a blogger who writes about training for marathons may get you more mileage than a review from a blogger who covers sports and fitness in general.
- Look for bloggers that are well connected – participation with blogger groups and associations are good (the Beauty Blog Network and Total Beauty are examples from the beauty world, but there are many others).
- Make sure bloggers are following FTC guidelines – there should be some sort of disclosure if bloggers receive compensation or free products/services. iFabbo (International Fashion and Beauty Bloggers’ Organization) is a great way to connect with quality beauty and fashion bloggers. iFabbo maintains strict standards for blogger and brand members.
- If you find a blogger you like working with, feel free to ask them for recommendations of other bloggers. You can also check their blogroll (a list of links to other blogs – usually on the home page) for similar blogs.