As marketing has morphed from from B2C to B2I2C (business to influencer to consumer), blogger outreach is fantastic way for your brand to keep up and partake in effective digital marketing and PR strategies.
After all, 81% of the online population trusts information and advice they get from bloggers.
When it comes to using blogger outreach to launch a new product, there are a variety of strategies to implement. Take a look at the following examples and consider how other brands are doing it and pick the ones that coincide best with your brand and new product.
Enlist bloggers as “hype creators”
Brands have seen success with giving influential bloggers access to the product or service before it’s released. This way the blogosphere is full of product reviews and an urgency for your product before it even hits the market.
Ford is doing a great job with this tactic as part of a campaign they’re running right now. They gave 100 bloggers and active social media users free Ford Fiesta cars before the car has been released to the public.
These chosen few take their car on assigned adventures and create visually driven content. Judging by all the content and the intriguing nature of the content, it’s pretty safe to say that this campaign is doing quite well.
Get your product reviewed
If you don’t have access to distribute early product for blogger review, still take part in the product review tactic when the product gets released.
If you’re a GroupHigh user you can search not only for blogs by niche and reach but also for blogs who do product reviews ensuring they’ll be receptive to working with brands.
Fashion companies do a great job reaching out to fashion bloggers for product reviews. Many times bloggers are sent fashion items with no strings attached to see if the item sparks a sincere post. These posts are then very visually driven and costs only the money it took to send the jeans, sweater, scarf, etc. to the blogger.
Even if the fashion item doesn’t spark an entire blog post, bloggers tend to be active across many digital channels so at the very least the brands usually get at least a Tweet or a pin.
It’s important to note that the more influential bloggers often require payment for product reviews in addition to the free product from your brand. It makes sense if you think about it, they’ve worked hard to curate such a successful blog and their recommendations carry so much weight so if it’s in the budget—go for it. If it’s not in the budget, a lot of brands have still been seeing success with the mid-level influencers.
Gather all of you bloggers in one place
Consider hosting an event for localized bloggers.
Red Lobster hosts blogger dinners at locations all over the country to promote new menu items while Lee Jeans hosts jean parties with bloggers.
Even if your product isn’t location specific like a restaurant, it’s still not a bad idea to get groups of bloggers together in central locations like Lee Jeans does. This gives the campaigns much more of a personal touch and human approach in a world where everything is so digital and faces are rarely put to names.
Give the bloggers the whole experience
Instead of sending the blogger free product, consider sending a gift card so they can document the whole experience with your brand.
Outreach campaigns that see the most success and praise are usually do to the fact that the agency or professional took their tactic an extra step further.
Allowing the blogger to experience and document the whole brand process leads to a more rounded out post and review of your brand.
I’ve seen mixed reviews of the effectiveness of giveaways. The goal with this tactic is to give your blogger a product for themselves to review on their blog as well as a product or two to give away to their audience.
Usually an entry to win the product is a Facebook like or Twitter follow of your brand so between new social media followers and some hype around your new product, this tactic can be successful when done well.
Vitamix ran quite a few giveaways on mom blogs and it seemed to work for them because a lot of eager Mom’s partook!
Give them something for their audience
Bloggers, of course, love their audience members because without them, their blog would be nothing. Thus they try to take extra good care of their members and love to be given the opportunity to offer them exclusive offers and discounts.
When you release your new product give the bloggers you work with a coupon/offer that they can give to their audience.
Time to wrap it up
You’ve got the strategy and creativity down but make sure you equip the bloggers with a call to action for your call to action. That means send the bloggers the proper links and “last step” information.
Be up front with how you want them to direct their readers to the site or store to purchase your new product.
Don’t be too wordy but make sure you give the bloggers all of the necessary facts and material about your brand and topic so that when they write their post they are conveying accurate information.
You can make a quick press page or check out a tool like Pitch Engine so that you can house all of the links, images and information that you want the blogs to have access to.
Have you utilized blogger outreach to promote a new product? Would love you to share your experience in the comments section below!