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Tiny Chipmunk has been featured in another two blogs this week.  Working with bloggers is new for me and I wanted to give it a try.

The first was part of a competition ran by Mummy In a Tutu to celebrate her reaching 10k Twitter followers.

The second was a review by Thrifty Mum.

Why this could work for you

Part of my strategy, early on, was to get my brand noticed – and working with bloggers who already had an audience seemed like a good way to do this.  

I think that if you have a physical product to sell, unless it’s highly unique, you’re competing against lots of other sellers and need to get noticed (by the right people).  Working with bloggers can be a great option as:

  • It can be cheaper than other forms of marketing.
  • Some bloggers have huge audiences, which they’ll be putting you infront of.
  • Most bloggers seem to be all over social media, so chances are your product will be featured on different channels, which can also increase your own followers.
  • If people google your company or product they’ll (hopefully) get the reviews come up as results.

Things to consider when working with bloggers

If you’re thinking of using bloggers to promote your product, here’s what you need to think about.

  • Who’s the ideal audience for your product?  Mine is mainly parents (although I suppose those buying gifts for new parents also make up a percentage).  
  • Which blogs do they read?  Obviously you can’t know this exactly, but you can make some broad assumptions.  For instance, I approached Mummy bloggers, as felt that their readers were probably parents.  (I did hope for a Dad blogger too, but haven’t come across one with a young baby as yet.)
  • Who to choose?  Finding blogs is easy, working out which ones to work with, not so much.  There are lists out there of which blogs have the most subscribers in a sector (i.e. parenting).  You can also pay for lists of contact details.
  • Getting in contact.  Once you know which are the most popular blogs in the area you’re looking to reach you can look at the blog’s contact/media page (most will tell you how many subscribers they have, how many unique visits they get, etc) and make a decision from there about whether you’d like to approach them. Most tend to have an email address and/or a contact form.
  • Making it appealing.  From my experience, if a blogger likes your product they’ll review it for a few free ones. This seems like a good deal to me, as if they don’t need more than one (and depending on the product they possibly won’t) they will most likely give it to someone else – yet again increasing the number of people who have your product and can share it).  Some might prefer to be paid, but I found offering enough products to make it attractive was enough.
  • Keeping in contact.  Bloggers are busy people.  They have their regular posts to think about and will most likely be working with other people too, so your review might not be an immediate thing.  So if you don’t hear from them in a while, don’t be offended.  Just follow up in a friendly, not pushy, way.

For me, the process was made a little harder as I needed to find pregnant Mummy bloggers, due in the next month or so.  I actually got lucky finding mine.  A friend knew Fran from Whinge Whinge Wine (do check out this blog, it’s hilarious), who put a call out to her blogging network and came back to me with some ladies who were potentially interested.  It goes to show, it’s all about who you know…

Is it worth a try?

So, has it worked for me?  Hmmm… it’s early days, so time will tell.  It’s very hard to attribute sales to a blog post/review, although I guess I can follow up and see how many have been ordered via the blogger’s affiliate links.  I do think general awareness has increased, as views on my Amazon product page have gone up (as have my followers on social media).

I would say it probably shouldn’t be your only means of promotion, but it’s definitely worth a shot.  For the cost of a few free products, assuming yours is a good product, there’s nothing to lose.