Blogger outreach is often one of the main sources of income for people who want to make money from blogging. It’s quite simply brands and businesses working with bloggers to create genuine, authentic content to promote a product, brand or service. Sometimes the brand will contact the blogger directly and in other cases this is negotiated by an agency. When I first began blogging brands came to me but as I went on to make this my full time career I then signed up to lots of agencies and networks in order to be considered for more potential blogger outreach work. Bonjour Blogger have a handy list of blogging networks to join to start with but you’ll soon find that once you’re publishing a successful blog that the invitations will come to you.
The Cons of Blogger Outreach
When you begin to accept blogger outreach you may come across the negative side. We’ll go over this first so you don’t become disheartened if you encounter these problems along the way:
You May Be Told Your Blog is Not Good Enough
Over the years you do develop a hard skin while blogging. I used to get upset when people (usually SEOs) would email me and tell me my blog was not good enough. Now it makes me laugh that they will email begging to be featured on my blog but when I mention that my fee is higher they tell me I’m not good enough. Fair enough, there are lots more bigger blogs out there than mine but it’s not good blogger outreach to tell a blog that you have approached as you wanted to work with them that they aren’t good enough purely because they asked for a fair wage.
Packages Out of the Blue
One bad aspect of blogger outreach is receiving packages that are sent out of the blue (I think postmen and couriers must dread delivering to bloggers). A few years ago one such parcel ended up at a neighbours house. I had to walk a fair way to collect the parcel and it felt quite heavy. I got back (up the hill), opened the parcel and found a kilo of potatoes and goose fat (I’m vegan). If the company had done their research they could have found an omni blogger who would be happy to feature a recipe about potatoes roasted in animal fat. One email to me could have avoided the situation.
Loan Products or Products to Keep
One part of blogger outreach is being sent products for the purposes of review (some bloggers accept payment in addition too). Most of the time once the product has been reviewed it is the bloggers to keep. On occasion the brand have made it clear that the product would just be for loan within the email. Personally I don’t accept these even if it is a high price product or there is a fee attached. I don’t want to invest a lot of time into trying out a product, taking all of the photography, writing and sharing a post and then having to package the product up and send it back. Also it means if a reader asks me how I’m getting on with the item in the long term future I can’t answer them. But for me even worse blogger outreach is when the products are sent out (sometimes without consent by the blogger) and then bloggers are expected to return them after a loan period. I know other bloggers who have been expected to send back toys that their children have become attached to, which must be awful.
Being Expected to Work For Peanuts
I’m often asked to feature new grocery products on my blog and personally I find that there is normally a low budget or no budget in place for this which is disappointing as recipe posts take a long time to create, photograph and write. It did make me giggle when I was offered free peanuts for writing about a new “brand” of nuts. Yes, I was literally asked to work for peanuts- no thank you!
Good Blogger Outreach
Thankfully the majority of your inbox will feature good blogger outreach. This happens when the brand or agency research the blog well and know that it will be a good fit. Likewise as a blogger it’s important to only accept products and sponsored posts that you know will fit well with your blog and be useful to your readers.
It’s also important to the brand to be open about their expectations from the start. How many blog posts? How many shares? Will there be an exclusivity contract? What are the payment terms?
I believe in order for blogger outreach to be successful once parties need to gain from the project. The brand should get decent exposure, recommendation and link building while the blogger should be paid for their work (on time!).
Personally my favourite businesses to work with are the ones that offer regular work and pay on time. It’s always nice when businesses pay high but it’s also handy to work with businesses who pay modestly but regularly as these are the ones who will keep you in bread and butter while you wait the the “high but late payers“.
One new blogger outreach company that I have worked with successfully a lot is Get Blogged. Here is a quick Q and A with them:
Q1: What’s the background of Get Blogged?
As site owners ourselves, we had been working with Bloggers for years on a one-to-one basis, managing everything from an inbox and a very large spreadsheet! Every month we discussed a better way of doing our Blogger Outreach, before going back to the hundreds of emails, paying invoices, and updating endless rows in a google doc.
Eventually, we had too many Bloggers and too many brands to continue doing this with our sanity intact! Our team sat down and planned the creation of a platform that would allow bloggers, influencers, brands and site owners to all work together – hassle free!
Q2: Why should a business engage in Blogger Outreach?
So very valuable. We have many conversations with businesses and brand owners who are so enlightened when we explain to them the benefits of working with Bloggers. Benefits include increased traffic, better brand awareness, increased site authority and better search engine rankings.
Q3: How can Bloggers get themselves more work with brands?
We always love Bloggers who submit awesome content on time, who nail the brief, and take pride in their work. Also, just being a nice human works, too. We see our Bloggers as our most favourite colleagues we can’t wait to get to work to chat to. Mutual respect goes a long way with us.
Are you a blogger or business? What are your tips for good blogger outreach?