3 Tips to Make Your Influencer Outreach Awesome

Social Media Influencer Outreach

Influencers: “Individuals who have the power to affect purchase decisions of others because of their (real or perceived) authorityknowledgeposition, or relationship. “

Social Media Influencer Outreach

Influencers are everywhere. They can be in the form of a 14 year old girl with a Youtube channel about makeup application, or a stay at home mom who blogs about raising her children. Influencers are not necessarily high powered folks with a lot of money, they are just people who have an audience, and something to say.

Influencers sound like the kind of people you want on your team right? Of course. We all know that word of mouth and referral are extremely successful methods in attaining new customers. In conjunction with your marketing plan, Influencer Outreach can be a very effective, and inexpensive way to reach your potential consumers. When we are creating an Influencer Outreach campaign, we go through the following steps to build our plan of attack.

  1. Know your Audience: This is critical to any aspect of marketing, but it is especially important here. If you are going to be doing outreach, you want to make sure that your product is going to end up in the hands of someone you know will love it, and later recommend it. It is important to assess the type of blogger you want to reach out to based on your existing demographics. For instance, if you are a food brand, try compiling a list of Mommy Bloggers and At Home Chef bloggers.
  2. Develop the right Collateral: Influencer Outreach is as much about you as it is about the blogger. It is important to find a way to entice the influencer to want to try, and recommend your product. Are you sending them free samples? Are you allowing them to do a giveaway on their blog? Are you offering free media in return? This is an incredibly important aspect of your plan and the collateral can make or break the entire campaign.
  3. Share the Love: Bloggers are just like us, they want to increase their reach. One of the most important elements to an any outreach campaign is offering some love in return. Ask your bloggers to write a review, or share a recipe, or pictures (depending on the time of product you have). Use their content on your own social media platforms. Not only does this give varying content to your audience, but if gives the bloggers a lot more exposure. Influencer Outreach really needs to be a two way street, so don’t forget to share the love!

These 3 steps are just the beginning of a good Influencer Outreach plan and when you focus on creating the right plan, you might be surprised by how much you get back.  We have had a lot of success with building customer bases using Influencer Outreach for our clients and we continue to broaden our horizons with this type of marketing.



It’s the Little Wins that Count

When you start working with a brand in the very early stages of a marketing campaign, you quickly realize that it’s the little wins that give you the encouragement and motivation to keep you and the campaign going. For those of us who work on the social media side of the campaign, it can be a daunting task to break through the Internet chatter with your brand’s message. Whether you’re reaching out to people on Twitter or through a blogger outreach effort, it’s a super noisy Internet-world out there. But every once in a while, you connect with a member of your audience. Whether it’s through a popular, mainstream website or blog or just an everyday customer who has something nice to say about your brand, every tiny win is a step towards greater success.

Last week, I found out that due to our blogger outreach efforts, a popular beauty blogger was going to feature a review of a client’s product. As I pulled up the blog’s homepage, my heart jumped for joy when I saw the familiar name and logo of my client at the top of that blog. This wasn’t the first blog placement we have secured for this client, but it is still incredibly rewarding to see the results of your efforts working one small placement at a time.

Every blog placement, Twitter interaction and Facebook conversation, while they may seem small, are little wins that intertwine your word of mouth efforts to increase brand awareness and help propel your client to the next level. Even the big brands that boast million-dollar advertising budgets started out with a tiny budget and small campaigns. Growing a brand takes time, hard work, dedication (and a lot of coffee). Cherish the little wins and remember them once you make it big because it’s the little wins that make you and your brand who you are.

Tumblr: Or That Thing You Need To Think About

 As of last year, Tumblr had 8.5 times more page views per month than WordPress.com. Let that sink in. The scrappy little purveyor of humorous gif’s has 8.5 times more traffic than one of the most established hosted-blogging platforms in the world. I guess this means we should be paying attention, eh?

What is Tumblr? It’s a blogging platform at heart, but with a twist. This isn’t meant to be a traditional blog for writing that people visit or subscribe to with an RSS reader. Tumblr is designed for short, media-driven content: pictures, songs, movies, quotes, links. On top of that, Tumblr has a social angle (because honestly, who doesn’t these days). If you have a Tumblr account, you can follow other Tumblr blogs by clicking a follow button. All the content from blogs you follow show up in a feed on your Dashboard, similar to Twitter’s timeline.

It might seem overwhelming to add another social to your repertoire, but it’ll be worth it if your audience is age 12–34. Here are a few tips to help you get started.

  1. Keep posts short and, if possible, visual. People scroll through their Tumblr feed quickly, similar to scrolling through their Twitter timeline. If your post is too long or too wordy, users will likely scroll right past it. I love those epic 4,000-word New Yorker cover stories and I still find myself scrolling past things in my Tumblr feed that are wordy. It’s just not the place for it.
  2. Post quickly and frequently. Unlike Facebook or Twitter, the rule on how often to post is a bit more lax. Tumblr blogs may post 10 times in the same day, but Tumblr’s focus on visuals makes scrolling through lots of posts easy. Also, don’t take time stressing over every single thing you post. Tumblr’s vibe is quick, easy-going and off the cuff. Cut loose!
  3. Show your personality. The thing about Tumblr is that, unlike Twitter and Facebook, there aren’t many hard and fast best practices. As long as you’re having fun, you’re probably doing it at least half right. One great use for Tumblr is to show the personality of your brand. Posting pictures of antics around the office or of the things your employees enjoy. What pop song is on repeat at the office? You could even use it as a way to show off your awesome customers.

Here are some brand examples.

Nike uses their Made by Nike Tumblr to profile young athletes and creators wearing Nike work out clothing.

Coke’s Happiness is.. Tumblr is a visual stream of what Coke thinks happiness looks like.

Popstar Carly Rae Jepsen’s Tumblr shows off fan-made covers of her new single.

Popular Mac/iPhone e-mail client, Sparrow, uses Tumblr to post tips and tricks on using their application.

MSNBC uses Tumblr to post news articles, but always with a prominent photography accompanying a quick story.

Are you already on Tumblr? What tips and tricks do you use?

A Software Developer Shows Us How To Do Viral Marketing

iPhone development team taptaptap posted a run down of 10 more useful iPhone tip & tricks on their blog last Friday. They were really good tips. Even as a self-professed iPhone nerd, I didn’t know some of these tips.

I know what you’re asking, “Ok fanboy, what does any of this have to do with social media?”

Well honestly, what’s better than a list of awesome tricks? Even jaded iPhone “experts” are commenting on the post saying it’s the best list of tips they’ve seen. It has almost 650 tweets. That’s pretty decent traffic to the blog of this modest indie developer. taptaptap even took it one step further and integrated little pitches of their own apps into the list.

For each tip, taptaptap included iPhone screen shots showing how the trick works. This is one for the built in Apple camera app:

And then twice they followed the Apple app screenshot with a screen shot of one of their apps and how it it improves on the features of the build in app. This one shows taptaptap’s app, Camera+, and how it differentiates from Apple’s built in camera app:

The integrated pitches were very tasteful, never overbearing and didn’t dominate the post. taptaptap did a great job compiling information they knew was unique and would get people to pass the post around, driving traffic to their site and getting eyes onto their products.

5 Tips on How to Pitch Bloggers

Our clients hire us because they want advertising. They have a message that they want to get out to their target audience. Blogs are an excellent tool to use, because they attract specific audiences. The only problem is that we don’t have control over what is posted on a blog, because blogs are completely controlled by their creator, the blogger.

This is why the act of pitching bloggers can be so vital to some of our word of mouth campaigns. In this blog post we will show you 5 tips on how to pitch bloggers so that they are most likely to write about you in a favorable light. This will increase your website search engine optimization, and more importantly get your message out to your target audience.

Tip 1: Create an outreach plan.

We never talk to bloggers without a lot of planning. First, we make sure that we are reaching out with bloggers that make sense with our client and our campaign. Just because our client is a chain of restaurants doesn’t mean that all food bloggers are appropriate. If our client’s restaurants are high-end, then we might reach out to foodie bloggers. If the restaurants were low-end we might reach out to blogs that focus on saving money. It all relates back to the overall campaign and how we are positioning the client. Our blogger outreach has to sync with our creative work so that the messaging is consistent.

After we’ve created a database of bloggers and their contact information, we get creative with our pitches…

Tip 2: Think about the blogger and the blogger’s audience. What’s in it for them?

Bloggers only want to post things that their audience will find valuable. However, that doesn’t mean that every blogger outreach has to involve some sort of contest or giveaway. Sometimes we offer an exclusive discount on our clients product. Sometimes there is such a good match between what our client does and what the blog audience wants that simply hearing about our client is value enough. It can even be as simple as offering a link exchange or writing/featuring a guest post for the blog.

In short, you need to be creative and strategic in what you are offering bloggers. Make sure that there is something of value for  both the blogger and the blogger’s audience. For example, offer the blogger a free trial product and have them run a contest on their blog for their readers. You get exposure, the blogger gets free product and a cool blog post, and the blogger’s audience gets gets a message and giveaway tailored to their interests.

Tip 3: Make your email personable

We never mass email our bloggers, for several reasons:

1. Bloggers get pitched all the time. They can sense a spam email from a mile away.

2. We want to create a relationship with this person. We treat them as more than just a name and an email address on a list.

3. We offer each blogger a unique incentive or discount. An “exclusive discount code” doesn’t do much good if the same code is posted on about 10 other blogs.

Tip 4: Can’t find their email? Do some research!

Bloggers often refrain from posting their email address on their blogs because of spam or other reasons. This can make it difficult to contact the blogger, but it’s not necessarily impossible. Worst case scenario, you can always leave a comment on their blog. But often there are other ways to contact bloggers. Try their facebook page, twitter page, linkedin profile, or even try googling them. We’ve had success by interacting with them on other social networking platforms, and they appreciate being contacted in a new or different way.

Tip 5: “Blogger” is a loosely defined term

You don’t need to have a blog for us to want to reach you. We like bloggers because they have specific audiences that pay attention to them, but with the advent of social networks, they don’t necessarily need a blog to have an audience. For example, Ashton Kutcher doesn’t have a blog, but he does have over 5 MILLION Twitter followers. We never pass up an opportunity to reach out to influencers, whether they have a blog or not.

BONUS TIP: Bloggers have a strong sense of loyalty to their readers. If they don’t think that your product/service/event is up to their standards, they may not post about it, or even worse – they could write an extremely negative review. This just emphasizes how you need to ensure that the bloggers you are reaching out to are a good fit. You also need to be confident in your product. If you think there is a chance a blogger might not like your product, you might want to think twice before sending it to a highly influential individual.

Now that you understand some of the issues surrounding blogger outreach, you are better prepared to get some visibility for your company. But be careful, you don’t want to start something like this without a plan, or without considering the risks. What are your overall goals? Is this the best way to achieve them? Are there other marketing tactics that would compliment this outreach? If you have any questions, feel free to give us a call. We’re happy to help.