blogger relations

The One Thing Killing Your Blogger Outreach

blogger outreachLike many other marketing and PR blogs, we get a lot of inquiries from PR agencies and reps to write about their clients. I ignore about 80% of them.

Why? It’s mostly due to the pitch not being relevant. OMB is an agency blog with the purpose of promoting thought leadership for TopRank Online Marketing. It’s not a news site, it’s not a blog starved for ideas or in need to cover the latest software launch.

With blogger outreach, a lot of focus gets put on the hook or the angle of a pitch. Even if the message is relevant and compelling, I find a lot of those pitches still fail by leaving out one really important thing. Even if the pitch is only 90% relevant or if the hook wasn’t entirely compelling, including that one thing means there’s a good chance I’d act on it. What’s the one thing?

Blogger Relations: Push or Pull? How to Get Bloggers to Mention Your Brand

Push Pull Blogger Relations

Is Your Blogger Relations Using Push & Pull PR Tactics?

Yesterday digital PR maven Adam Vincenzini pinged me about a post he was researching on how brands could make it easier for bloggers to talk about them. It’s a great question because mentions and links from influential content sources are priceless for credibility, awareness and in particular, social SEO.

This is a topic close to home because after 8 years of blogging here at Online Marketing Blog attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors, nearly 50k RSS subscribers, 13k blog Facebook Fans and 16k blog Twitter followers, I’ve had the opportunity to be pitched, schmoozed and numerous other tactics to get me to talk about companies that want exposure. After all that, I can say I think I’ve found the magic formula that will almost guarantee bloggers will talk about a particular brand.

BlogWorld NY: @JasonFalls No BS Guide to Advertising & PR for Bloggers

Jason FallsWhile initially sitting in a SEO session, I quickly switched once I saw that Jason Falls was presenting. Jason is one of those speakers that gives great advice and he’s funny.

The lowdown on this session: How bloggers can better understand the world of advertising, marketing and PR to avoid common mistakes.  How can we learn from the crappy behavior of the bloggers before us.

There’s a low cost of entry to become a blogger. Basically, all you need is a pulse and an internet connection. But, just because you’re a blogger, doesn’t mean you’re a diva. When you start to evolve as a blogger is when you attract an audience. You’re still not a rockstar, but you’ll be making progress when people are paying attention to you and engaging.  For perspective, many advertisers require a minimum of 100k pageviews per month. If your blog isn’t at that level, you’re still building.

6 Types of Bloggers as Evangelists

Build a strong following and community and you have an army of brand advocates, especially when those advocates have a voice and a following of their own. As companies and agencies become more savvy about monitoring the social web, it’s important to understand what stage each voice is coming from and where they might go.

Here are my suggestions for 6 stages or types of blogger brand involvement:

1. Blogger mentions a brand – Sentiment could be anything: agnostic, positive, critical feedback, negative/dissenter. But it is hopeful and not cynical.  Of course this is not an evangelistic activity, but it is often the starting point.

2. Blogger reviews product/service associated with topic, interviews topic author, reaches out and create dialogue.

Digital PR and SEO Series: Part 3 Social Media Monitoring

digital public relations

We’ve made the case for integrating media relations, SEO and social media into a digital PR program as well as covering some of the basics. Now we can drill a bit deeper into blogger relations and social media monitoring.

Practical Examples of Involving SEO Expertise with Media & Blogger Relations, Social Media Monitoring

The advent of digital PR and the technology tools that serve as compliments means changes in the way agencies provide client consulting and practice management. In the case of TopRank, we’re running both a internet marketing agency and a public relations practice, so we’ve always counseled our clients on the use of targeted keywords during interviews and in communications with the media as well as with content published to the web. In a push and pull PR strategy, keywords are used to optimize content and digital assets to enable the media to pull themselves to a client’s news.

PRSA Digital Impact: Not All Blogs Are Created Equal

This panel at the PRSA Digital Impact Conference includes Heidi Sullivan and Jay Krall of Cision and Jason Falls of Doe Anderson and who writes Social Media Explorer.

Heidi Sullivan from Cision
Heidi starts out a with a poll: How many comments for media relations? and How many have created a social profile for a client? A small number of hands raise for each question.

Jason Falls
Jason: What are three things you want to know?

  1. Less tools and tactics and more to how you’re applying this, illustrating the value of it
  2. More about blogger relations
  3. Strategy and context. Enough about tools. Are blogs for every organization?

Beyond Linkbait with Media and Blogger Relations – SES NY

On Thursday I’ll be presenting on a panel, “Beyond Linkbat: Getting Authoritative Mentions Online” with Chris Boggs and Sally Falkow. Sage Lewis will be moderating. I think this type of session is very timely as search engines begin to put more and more emphasis on higher quality and editorial link sources and less on sources that are easier to manipulate. Increasing competition online also means online branding and influence increase in their importance.

Online PR is a perfect solution for a topic that shines less light on tactics du jour, althought linkbaiting still works well, and more on leveraging the media and centers of influence online. I’ve written about how SEO and Online PR can work together in the past, but in this presentation I’ll be focusing on the Do’s and Don’ts of media relations and blogger relations.

Pull PR – Combining SEO and Public Relations


Many companies narrowly define PR activities online solely as blogger relations when in reality, online public relations is so much more. To me, internet based public and media relations encompasses gaining editorial exposure on the web with sites like blogs of course, but it also leverages web based technologies, networks and platforms for developing and maintaining more efficient communication with the media. And by “media” I mean traditional media with an online presence as well as other influencers – be they bloggers, power social news users or social networkers.

Communication efforts might happen online, but the media exposure outcomes may be in print or the web. The question arises, if the connections are made and maintained online using online PR and social media tools, but the exposure is offline, is it still online PR? I say yes.

How NOT to pitch a blog

In the past I’ve written about blogger relations offering tips on how marketers or PR professionals ought to present their story ideas to bloggers. Pitching bloggers and print journalists are somewhat similar, but in the end, they can be very different things.

Here are a few “what you should not do” tips based on the 3-5 pitches per day we get at Online Marketing Blog:

  • It should go without saying not to pitch irrelevant stories, but all those PR interns out there hacking away make it so. Please don’t.
  • Don’t send a copy and paste email with salutations like, “Dear Nameoftheblog” or some other equivalent to “Hey you” or “Hey Guy”. If you can’t bother to find out the name of the blogger, then your message isn’t really that important.

Search Marketing Links 102206

RSS to Email service FeedBlitz has launched version 2.0 of the service. Lots of upgrades. via Blogger Design.

Google launches a new multivariate testing tool, Google Website Optimizer and is looking for beta testers.

Yahoo launches the new version of their sponsored search program, Panama.

Here’s a new e-book on social media (pdf) from spannerworks. This is a great companion book to the PR 2.0 Essentials (pdf) document from SHIFT.

Brian Solis publishes the next installment in his series about blogger relations: “Reaching The Blogosphere Part 4 – Writing and Distributing the News“.

Rohit’s “Dark Side of Social Media and How to Avoid It” offers sage advice on how NOT to market with social media.

Blogger Relations 101

As blogs become more important sources of information and competition for users’ time and attention against mainstream media, many marketers and public relations practitioners continue to stumble about the blogosphere like a bull in a china shop.

Online Marketing Blog gets about 5-10 pitches per week on average, which provides more than enough of a sample on how blogs are getting pitched these days. What’s the verdict? It doesn’t look good.

A few of these pitches are right on or just lucky. Many are simply crap. Some come from friends but never make it to a post. Some are from complete strangers, but are very relevant and get in. Some are borderline where I’m interested, yet I never hear from that company again.

Blogger Relations: “gets it”

On Wed night of Search Engine Strategies last week I had the privilege of attending a dinner hosted by Gary Price of Organized by their PR department, Ask was making a specific effort to reach out to bloggers in the search marketing space. Other Ask staff were in attendance as well including Paul Vallez the Director of Ask search advertising, a representative from Bloglines as well as Paul Loeffler and Patrick Crisp from their public relations department.

Bloggers in attendance included: Matt Bailey, Rand Fishkin and his mom Gillian, Chris Pirillo, Andy Beal, Loren Baker, Lee Odden, Jennifer Laycock and our favorite party crasher, Jim Hedger. (links are to photos from the dinner)