This is my second post in which I am live blogging from the New Communications Forum “Blog University,” here in Napa, California.
Right now Alice Marshall of Technoflak is leading a session on “How to Pitch Bloggers.”
She’s talking about how PR and corporate marketing professionals should or should not approach individual bloggers to promote products and companies.
Alice points out these important points to remember about pitching bloggers:
- To identify the blogs which are influential in your target space, check services such as Technorati and Bloglines to discover which blogs are discussing your clients or your company, and its products and markets. Then visit those blogs and check their blogrolls and post links to find other related-topic blogs.
- The time to develop relationships with influential bloggers is before you need to make a specific pitch. Spend some time commenting on blogs that are key to your client’s or company’s markets, so that you are not unknown when a need to make a pitch arises.
- Personalize your message to the blogger. Phrase your email something like this: “I read your post about such-and-such, and it reminded me of this point….”
The group discussion also turned to the topic of paying bloggers to write about particular products and companies. The general consensus: any paid relationship needs to be made obvious and open. How to go about disclosing that relationship is subject to somewhat more difference of opinion, but most people seemed to agree on this basic point: transparency is key.