by: Carol Bryant
If you blog, you are doing so for a variety of reasons, but getting on the radar of brands (translate: money) is probably high on that list.This post is inspired by Sadie & Co. (her and her dogs plus the cat). Sadie is a blogger who blogs about personal experiences, along with health and wellness tips, exercise, and training techniques, and product information from experts. Sadie applied for the #SubZeroDifference campaign and was accepted.
The folks at PetSmart Canada wanted to capture the life of a dog mom who uses the brand and lives in Canada, so they came to BlogPaws. A few emails and phone calls later, and Sadie had a film crew at her house, see?
In fact, if you’d like to read about what Sadie experienced, click here for Her and Her Dogs Filming experience.
There are things you absolutely can do to get brands to notice you. Some of them are baby steps, others take a bit of time, but all of them require consistency. Here are 10 things you can do right now to get brands to notice you, no matter how long you have been blogging….or even if you’ve just started. (PS As of this writing, I’ve been blogging over five years):
(1) Engage on Social Media with Brands: If the only time a brand knows about you is when you want something, chances are slim that you’ll be working together on a regular basis. Working with brands is a lot like dating: You need to get to know each other, what works, what doesn’t, and what you have in common. Any relationship that is all take-take-take without some give won’t last very long. Want to be asked out on a second date? Tweet brands just because. Get to know them. Comment on their Facebook posts. Engage on Instagram. Re-pin something from Pinterest. Be a giver.
(2) Work For it, Don’t Wish For It:
Pet bloggers are making an impact on the pet industry. Brands realize the power of a well-written and visually appealing blog post by an authoritative source. Anyone can tell you that blogging is lucrative. Anyone can tell you that if you stick with blogging long enough, you will succeed. Anyone can tell you that you can make a ton of money blogging. So can you make money pet blogging? Well……
Working for it and not wishing for it are two completely different aspects and I am not just anyone. I am working for “it” (pet blogging), too. And yes, you can make money pet blogging: It all depends on:
- How you do it – as defined by your blogging business plan;
- If you are willing to put the time into achieving (A);
What your idea of “making money” is;
I walked into a conference in 2010 with the notion of figuring out my next career step in life. I walked out a changed woman. Though there are hundreds, if not more, conferences that a person can attend these days, there is none that has ever had the profound impact on my life like BlogPaws.
BlogPaws yearly conferences bring together hundreds of pet bloggers, pet enthusiasts, shelters, rescues, and the brands who serve them, for social media education, networking, and promoting worldwide change for pets in need. This means if you like pets in some capacity: Whether that’s on a traditional blog or a microblog, like Facebook/Pinterest/Twitter, etc., this is the conference for you. Lifestyle bloggers attend the conference because brands understand that families come in all shapes and forms: From traditional mom and dad to two dads to single moms raising a dog and everything in between.
(3) Take Great Pictures: This sounds like common sense, but you would not believe how many folks are out there snapping photos, posting them, and deep down inside believing that they are quality images. Click here to learn how to create blog photos that brands love.
(4) Write a Review As If It Appeared in the New York Times: Seriously, write a blog post with such ardent fervor that people want to read it and then go back and re-read it. No, it does not have to be a Pulitzer Prize winning post, but at the very least, it should:
- Tell a cohesive story that the reader can relate to, understand, and not have to struggle to read.
- Have a catchy, SEO friendly title that readers will understand and want to see, then click to read more.
- Contain outbound links (with no follow code where appropriate) and inbound links as well, where mandated.
- Contain carefully selected linking words. Ask yourself of it makes sense to associate the linked page with that word or phrase.
- Have content that is target with the assignment and be quality in its final form.
In terms of blog images associated with a review, ask yourself if your images are optimized. Optimized images play an important role in your blog post both for normal display and for alternative views. Here’s a handy list to keep in mind with regard to blog images:
- Do your images help to tell the story of your blog post?
- Are your images clear, bright, and high quality?
- Image title should provide additional information and follow the rules of the regular title: it should be relevant, short, catchy, and concise.
- Alt text is meant to be an alternative information source should describe what the image is about and keep readers interested in your content.
(5) Strive For Influence: Numbers are great: Of course, most brands want to know the basics: What is the traffic to the blog? How many followers on different social media platforms, etc? Influencer marketing is here, now, and is sticking around. According to Tap Influence, “Influencer marketing is a type of marketing that focuses on using key leaders to drive your brand’s message to the larger market. Rather than marketing directly to a large group of consumers, you instead inspire / hire / pay influencers to get out the word for you.”
Do you have a business plan for your blog? Do you have a content plan for your blog? Are you wanting your blog’s name to roll off the lips of pet parents as a trusted resource? I sure do. Work to build influence. Keep reading.
(6) Know What Brands Don’t Want: If you are anything like me, knowing what to avoid provides a clear road map. A few months ago, I penned a piece called “Anatomy of BlogPaws Paid Opportunities.” There are ways you can monetize your blog if you are willing to put forth the time, attention, effort, and passion into doing so. Read that piece.
(7) Attend the Right Conferences: I would be remiss to not mention this: Attending BlogPaws changed my life. Now I work here, but without that first step in the door back in 2010, I wouldn’t be where I am today. Yes, conferences cost money. The money is in the travel and the lodging. At the BlogPaws Conference, one of the first things a brand representative told me all the years ago remains committed to memory for me.
“Wow,” he mused, “You must really want to be a blogger.”
“Yes, I sure do. Why, may I ask do you think that?”
“Because,” he said, “You’re here.”
“I want to come to BlogPaws but finances are preventing me from getting there. Do you have any recommendations?”
Oh, how I have walked this path. I can honestly say that without attending the BlogPaws Conferences, my career would not have advanced nor escalated to the shape it takes today. I put my reputation on the line in sharing that you get back from BlogPaws the Conference what you put into it.
Click here for 13 ways to afford the BlogPaws Conference.
And click here for 20 ways to earn extra money.
The BlogPaws Conference early bird rate expires in December, so get the best pricing while you can.
(8) Give Readers What They Want: We all want to write what we know, and we should: But if your readers don’t care about dog grooming, then why blog about it? Give readers what they want, get the numbers to the point that brands perk up and notice, and watch as traffic creates more traffic.
Do you have an elevator pitch?
Is your About page current?
Is your Contact Me section clear and able to be found easily?
(9) Show up for #BlogPawsChat: Brands are there. Bloggers are there. Pet parents are there. Each week, I grow my Twitter followers by engaging, connecting, following, exchanging comments, re-tweeting, and putting the “social” in social media. Here is how to participate in a Twitter chat:
The #BlogPawsChat happens every Tuesday night from 8 to 10 pm EDT, except the third Tuesday of the month. We sometimes have a daytime chat, too.
(10) Be Consistent and Clean: Whether you have a business plan or not (highly recommended to have one), be consistent in your blogging efforts. I no longer strive to blog 5 to 10 times a week: It was breaking me down and I was exhausted. I spend the time on more quality posts with references, great images, well-researched content, and then I promote the heck out of that content.
Be clean in your blog’s layout. No one wants to turn on a television and see a fuzzy screen: The same holds true for a blog. Clean is the name of the game. Gone are the days of cluttered ads and busy-ness for the sake of looking, well, ‘busy.’
As for Sadie & Co, they are but one of the hundreds of bloggers that BlogPaws works with yearly. Our programs are on the rise, and we encourage you to take part, be engaged, stay consistent, snap fab pictures/use filters and editing software, and then be the star that you are. Shine brightly for the brands. Chances are they’ll notice.
Are you ready for them?