Right, you have just started a business or are planning on launching one this year.
You have a great product/service and a snazzy new website. (If you haven’t got a website yet, I highly recommend these guys).
You have set yourself up on social media. (Facebook & Instagram have personally been the best 2 resources for driving traffic to The London Mummy but people rave about Pinterest which I haven’t quite mastered yet).
Your friends and family have been supportive but you can’t rely on them forever. You have used your wider network.
Now you need to get yourself out there and market yourself to… your target market!
We are all getting used to the new wave of media that has taken the world by storm in the last few years. There are Bloggers, Vloggers, Instagrammers, Blogazine’s and Microbloggers (who ‘blog’ on a social platform) to name a few.
Bloggers are becoming popular with businesses and PR companies as it is now apparent that an audience is more responsive to a personal recommendation than an old school advert.
I have worked in PR and am now on the other side. The former is much harder let me tell you. If you have your own business, you have to do your own PR.
I am coming up to 18 months of this blogging lark and I absolutely love it. I love that I am free to do what I want, free to research, read, shout about and give exposure to people, products and places that I have chosen. So how do I hear about these people? Most often they contact me and that is what you have to do. Reach out!
How to build a good relationship with bloggers (if you want to use them) and how to maintain that relationship –
- Research some blogs that reach your target market (ie fashion, parenting, travel blogs?) When you approach them, make sure you use their name and get the spelling right. It is also obvious when it is a generic email (I understand that sometimes it’s a numbers game) but you are more likely to get a good response if you make it personal. Have you actually read their blog?
- Better yet, say why you like it (not for the ego) and even follow on 1 or 2 of their social media channels.
- Why not organise a small launch in a local cafe with a few local bloggers. If a blogger says they can’t make it – don’t get the cyber pip! You have to think about building a long term relationship, so reply with a ‘I understand’ etc (if you reply at all – sometimes not necessary…)
- Some bloggers receive a lot of requests. If you want them to differentiate between requests, give them an incentive – whether that’s a coffee, pay the taxi ride, offer a goody bag or send a sample. If you don’t have a budget, a good incentive would be that you share the post on your own social media or ‘press page’ on your website.
- If a blogger has agreed to give you exposure and sent you a list of questions and requirements i.e. types of photos, links etc rather than send over 10 different emails, send just one email with all the information. It makes it so much easier!
- Send loadable images! Don’t send thumbnail images but on the other hand don’t send too high res (as it is a massive hassle resizing photos!).
- I can’t say I am a fan of Dropbox. I prefer being sent pics in an attachment but perhaps that’s just me. Don’t send every marketing photo you have ever shot either!
- Be polite. Nothing worse than suck up central when wanting something and then you hardly hear from them when it’s done. Manners maketh man and all that.
- Not only should you say thank you if you want them to include you again, share the post on your social media and make sure you tag them correctly. (You press the ampersand @ then write the ‘handle’ and it should come up in bold).
- It’s also polite to comment on the post if you are tagged in it and it is about you. If a PR company has arranged the exposure for you, it is still a good idea to reach out and makes you relatable.
If you are starting a new business and are thinking of doing so this year, I hope you have found this post helpful. There are some excellent resources under ‘Careers’ on The Ultimate Directory. I will also be putting a series together of my favourite websites & bloggers in all the different sectors, so watch out for that too.
Lastly, if you email me with your new business, I will put together a post all of you who have asked!
Remember, if you don’t ask, you don’t get!
Have a great day xx