Building relationships through blogger outreach is a great way to gain traffic to your site and shares or mentions of your brand online. However, blogger outreach is rarely a “one size fits all” scenario. Follow these best practices to get the most out of your outreach efforts.
Before you type your first word, you need to know who you are reaching. Make sure the bloggers you’re pitching to would actually be interested in what you’re offering. That means, do your research! Tools like Technorati and Alltop make it easy to find the top bloggers relevant to your industry. Just make sure you’re looking deeper. Check out their “About Me” pages and read their previous posts to make sure they would be a good fit. Pitching to a blogger who doesn’t write about anything relevant to your brand or customers probably isn’t worth your time or theirs.
Grab Their Attention
The first thing the blogger sees of you pitch is the subject line… make sure it’s a strong one! Keep it short, simple and to-the-point. Make sure you’re not coming off as spammy if you are offering a free product.
Make it Personal
As I said before, blogger outreach isn’t “one size fits all.” Make sure you tailor your pitch to the specific blogger you are writing to. Mention their blog title, previous posts of theirs and even ask or compliment something about them that you learned in their bio page.
Keep it Clear
The body of your pitch should, like the subject line, be clear, short and concise. Make it very clear what you are asking of them and what you are offering in return. Give them just enough information so they understand your idea. Make sure the blogger knows the next steps you want them to take by including a clear call to action.
Bloggers (especially popular ones) are flooded with reader emails as well as other pitches. It is quite possible that your pitch may get lost in the crowd. A typical best practice is to follow up 5-10 days after sending the first email, depending on how quick you need their response. It may seem strange, but try adding “final” to the subject line of the follow up email to provide a sense of urgency. It also helps to provide a deadline for when you’d like to hear back about your proposal.
Continue the Relationship
If a blogger agrees to work with you and writes a review (or whatever action you requested) that relationship shouldn’t end once it’s posted! Make sure to follow up and thank the blogger for their time and effort and continue building the relationship. Who knows? You may have another blogger opportunity in the future that they could help with again.
Blogger outreach takes time. You can’t simply send out a template pitch and expect results. However, following these best practices will help you get the most out of your time and effort.