August 20, 2014
Last week, we explored reasons why working with bloggers can be beneficial to brands and companies, and provided roadmap for finding and evaluating bloggers. This week, we’ll review the essential things you should be doing when working with bloggers.
After you’ve thoroughly vetted bloggers and selected the one(s) you’d like to work with, you’ll want to make sure to:
- Be very clear about your expectations. Before you begin working with a blogger, make sure both you and the blogger are clear on the expectations of the relationship. Outline goals, due dates and exact details of what is to be accomplished. When necessary, establish a contract that formally binds states expectations, deliverables and payment information.
- Read their blogs. You will want to monitor blogs to make sure that your content is being shared and that the bloggers you are working with are keeping their opinions and thoughts in line with your company’s views, but you’ll also want to closely watch to see how bloggers are engaging with other brands, what they are working on and how you can leverage their latest post.
- Develop a personal relationship. It’s important to take time to develop relationships with bloggers. Remember, these are real people with personal lives, problems and other commitments. Find out what else they enjoy doing besides blogging and follow up with them to show you are invested in them.
- Be generous with credit and links. Working with bloggers should be a mutually-beneficial relationship. Bloggers should want to work with you as much as you want to work with them, so give credit on blogger-created materials and provide links back to their site as often as possible.
- Follow through on your promises. Remember that working with bloggers is a two-way street. If you agree to do something – no matter how trivial – follow through on your promise. Keeping a healthy working relationship with bloggers will make your job easier and keep bloggers wanting to work with you!
These five things will help you develop healthy relationships with bloggers and establish a base line for how future bloggers will be engaged by your company. Remember, bloggers can be a valuable communication tool for your company or brand, but a successful relationship with them depends on you and your willingness to invest time into the relationship.