So let’s break the process down a bit.
Step 1: Find
The first step in blogger outreach is to find the bloggers you might want to reach. All of the bloggers that you find now may not be the ones you ultimately pitch, but rather a starting point for whom you might want to reach out to later.
Where can you find bloggers?
- Blog Databases
- Twitter Directories
- Twitter Chats
Step 2: Research
This is the most important step in your entire campaign. The quality of your research will determine whether you’ll be successful in your outreach.
It’s important to learn everything you can about the blogger for two reasons:
- It helps to identify the right bloggers for your campaign—the bloggers who will actually appreciate your story.
- You can make your pitch as personalized as possible.
Step 3: Engage
How much you should actually engage with a blogger depends on the blogger.
The more professional bloggers are comparable to traditional journalists. They’re on the lookout for great stories and opportunities, so they will be receptive to a pitch assuming it’s targeted and personalized. In this instance, engaging is less important.
Many bloggers aren’t so professionally minded. Their blog is personal…it’s their baby and they’ll only let certain people in if they know and trust them. It’s important to get to know these bloggers on a more personal level before pitching them.
How can you engage with bloggers?
- Comment on their blog posts
- Reply to their tweets and RT their links
- Email them (without pitching anything)
- Involve them in your project from the start
Step 4: Pitch
All your hard work to this point can go down the drain if you don’t do this part correctly.
But hey, here’s the good news. If you’ve already done all the hard work to research and engage the bloggers, the pitch becomes easy. It becomes a “soft sell”.
Here are some things to consider when pitching bloggers (each tip won’t necessarily apply to all bloggers):
- Write captivating email subject lines.
- It’s always better if you can personalize the message.
- Remind them of previous times you’ve connected.
- There’s beauty in brevity.
- Be a knowledgeable and helpful resource.
- There are more channels than email.
- A pitch should be an opportunity for the blogger, not a request.
Step 5: Track
You thought that was it didn’t you? Once you pitch, your job is done right? Wrong!
This is where you start tracking the conversation and following up.
Then you should join in the discussions and content sharing. Help them spread the post across social platforms. Respond to any comments they get on the post about you.
Even after it’s all said and done, they’ve written about you and you reported the results to your boss or client, stay involved! You never know when you might want to work with the blogger again.
That’s just a really quick overview of the FREPT model. We’ll dive into each of the steps in more detail throughout the rest of the Guide to Blogger Outreach blog post series. So you can either subscribe by RSS, or if you don’t want to wait, you can download the entire guide to blogger outreach for free.