When you sell products online, it makes sense that you want to direct as much relevant traffic to where your goods are sold. So long as the traffic is relevant (meaning it consists of the people most likely to be interested in your stuff), more traffic will generally mean more sales.
While press in general is great for your business, getting press from influential blogs can be particularly beneficial to your business when you are running an e-commerce store. Unlike, say, a newspaper or local magazine article, a reader won’t have to remember to check out your stuff later when he or she gets on a computer. When your product is discovered through a blog, it’s as simple as clicking a link and BAM – he or she is right there at your shopping cart, right at the moment when they’re ready to buy.
Also, although there are many kinds of print media publications, there are vastly even more blogs out there. Out of these countless options you can niche down and approach just the right ones that suit your ideal target market.
Another positive of online blog features is that there is the added bonus of gaining back-links to your website. As you build back-links, your website will start to look more and more important in the eyes of search engines, drawing you even more traffic though their channel the higher you rank.
So how you you get your goods featured on blogs?
First things first: have a clear picture of your target market and what kind of blogs they are going be reading. If they are fashionistas, it makes sense you would target fashion and shopping bloggers. Are they home decorators/domestic goddesses? Then it makes sense to lean toward the DIY and interior design bloggers. Are they members of a particular fandom? Then, obviously, the specific pop-culture referencing blogs are where you need to be headed.
Not sure where to look? Pinterest in a great place to start (many a popular pin clicks through to a popular blog post!) Twitter is also an easy one, with hashtags available (such as #fbloggers) that will take you straight to the tweets of the bloggers themselves, and then there is also the opportunity for you to spy on your so-called “competition” or other sellers who are targeting the same audience as you. Most of them are going to be promoting the blog posts they are featured in, and you can then check out those particular blogs and decide if you too would be a good fit.
Once you have a substantial list of blogs you would like to be featured on, start getting the blogger familiar with you. Send him or her tweets complimenting his or her latest post. LEAVE THOUGHTFUL BLOG COMMENTS. Then, following much buttering up, send him or her an e-mail letting him or her know that you would love to work with him or her.
Take note: most bloggers will expect you to send them free product as a means of payment. This is more than fair considering all of the work they are going to put into creating a post for you and promoting you to all of their fans. Some bloggers may require additional compensation (an advertising fee). Agree to this only at your discretion, as there are many blogs out there and it may or may not be worth the cost to get in front of one’s audience.
If the blogger feels that you are a good fit, and you end up getting a feature on his or her blog – yay! But it doesn’t stop there. Share the love by promoting that post on all of your social media channels, on your press page, on your product pages for any of the items that were featured, and make mention of it on your own blog and/or e-mail list. Getting the stamp of approval from a blogger, even not a very well-known blogger, will contribute to establishing trust with your audience and encouraging sales. Plus, if you gave the blogger a unique coupon code for him or her to share with his or her readers of the post, then the new audience that is being exposed to your work will be even more likely to buy.
Not all blog features will result in immediate sales, but the build up of press will increase trust, familiarity, and back-links to your brand. A slow and steady stream of blog features on relevant blogs will make a difference in your product business. Plus, getting featured on one of your favorite blogs is exciting and fun!
Do you have a favorite blog that features products regularly? Share it in the comments below!