Blogger Outreach: Setting Clear Parameters for Success
This is Part 1 of a series on blogger outreach, where will we be discussing best practices for brands and their agencies looking to target bloggers as part of an influence marketing strategy.
Setting parameters for a successful blogger outreach campaign is really about setting clear, manageable expectations up front – both on the client side and with your internal team.
Part of setting your success parameters is ensuring you execute your outreach strategy with the right foundation in place. The other part is ensuring who you are targeting is tied back to specific, measurable objectives.
With this in mind, we’ll be touching on these key points specifically:
- The importance of setting clear goals for outreach before you hit the ground running.
- Segmenting your outreach list according to these goals as well relevancy and other critical benchmarks.
Determining Goals for Blogger Outreach
Measuring ROI for blogger outreach is possible, though keep in mind that there are few “tried and true” metrics for measuring blogger outreach success (if anyone tells you otherwise, they’re probably posturing).
Danny Brown touches on a similar sentiment in The Metrics of Social Media, where he discusses the debate over the legitimacy of measuring ROI on social media campaigns (blogger outreach included). As he says, “it all depends how your goals are set and how you define success.”
So the first step in setting goals is deciding what desired outcomes you want to walk away with, and whether these are more defined metrics that you can easily quantify, or broader outcomes that directly relate to how much engagement you entice with your outreach campaigns.
Some broader outcomes to consider:
- Brand awareness
- Sentiment (positive or negative response or mentions resulting from your campaign)
- Increase in engagement on brand social channels (social shares)
- Partnership opportunities
- Website traffic (unique visitors, pageviews, etc.)
- Asset downloads (reports, white papers, resource guides, etc.) and email opt-ins
- Sales driven by a coupon, promotion or affiliate program
- Qualified leads sent through a contact or RFQ form
Targeting the Right Bloggers for Outreach
Appropriately prioritizing the right bloggers for your brand matters, and not just because of relevance and the ability to personalize your outreach. This process will ultimately aid you in extending your outreach budget by being more targeted in your approach.
Segmenting your outreach list should start with a deeper understanding of which bloggers are the ideal fit for a potential relationship. While it’s important to set some minimum requirements or criteria for identifying bloggers for your outreach – minimum subscribers; comment activity; etc. – be wary of leaning too much on these types of metrics for segmenting your list. While it may clue you into how you can prioritize resources and who you should spend more time building relationships with, it tells you very little on whether the blogger is truly a fit.
A few ways to determine the right bloggers to target for your outreach:
- Define core topics that are highly relevant to your products and services, and use these as key identifiers in determining the right bloggers to reach out to.
- Define your core audience and identify influential blogs that speak directly to their needs.
- Audit your comments/social channels to see which bloggers have already engaged with your brand.
The common thread to both points is alignment: As each milestone in the strategy is reached, your efforts should remain aligned with your core objectives. By setting clear goals and determining how to target the right bloggers for your brand, you will have the foundation needed to better track and measure success along the way.
What are your parameters for building a successful blogger outreach strategy? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.
Image credit: marsmet544