This is what you need to know when working with bloggers.

In the digital age of reviews and blogging, it is essential to establish your reputation and earn trust. As a business owner, you want to be closer to your clients and find alternate ways to market your products. It is no longer required to advertise through magazines, and run expensive PR campaigns. Instead, business owners should develop strong relationships with influencers and bloggers.

Bloggers can help establish your online reputation, they have access to your target audience, they have a trust of their followers, thus everything they say about your brand is going to be trustworthy, and they help drive traffic to your website. So where should you start?

Figure out your target audience.

I am sure, all of you already have this down, but make sure it is as specific as possible. Think about their gender, age, interest, location, favorite TV shows, income level, shopping locations, etc. Who is your perfect client? Make him/her as visual as possible. It does help to have a visual board to put together that perfect person who needs your services.

Do your research.

There are plenty of great platforms you can discover bloggers and influences on. Take your time and visit Buzzsumo, Collabor8 App, to name the few (more great sources here).

Stay organized.

In the ocean of information, it is hard to stay on top of things and gather information. You can create lists manually, use tools like Buzzstream, or try to come up with your own system, whatever works for you to sort out information your bloggers. Check out my template here.

What are you prepared to offer?

As with every collaboration you need to figure out what would be the best for you and what you are prepared to offer to a blogger in exchange for their work. It can be an interview, a piece of interesting and unique information about your company (release of new products, the launch of a company, etc.), a sample of your product, a monetary compensation, or a mix. More and more bloggers are seeking for monetary compensation, although it is okay to negotiate and be open about your budget. One thing to keep in mind is to never take it personally when a blogger is refusing to work for free or require monetary compensation for your collaboration, after all, it is their work that should be respected.

Reach out to introduce yourself.

There are multiple ways to use to reach out to bloggers: Email, Twitter, Instagram, or any other social media channel. Make sure you express your interest in their blog and compliment them.

Pitch your idea.

After you dropped a little note to introduce yourself, it is time to send your personalized message, expressing sincere interest in working with them and what you are offering them (be as clear as possible).

Keep the Spark.

As any relationship, this one needs to be cherished and developed. Stay in constant touch, send thank you/holiday cards.

Express your gratitude.

Make sure to say “thank you” after a blogger shared an information about your company/product/service. You can even send them a discount code so they continue using your product.

Stay in touch.

If you really enjoyed working with them, it is always a good idea to keep in touch and plan future outreach campaigns. They can also be able to recommend you other influencers. Keep this relationship alive.