Though it’s largely been overtaken by social media platforms and YouTube, blogging is still an important influencer content medium for marketers to consider. Influencers who create blogs can build a large and loyal following, particularly in specific content niches in which written explanations are more useful than purely visual content. Recipe blogging, for example, remains as vital and important as it’s ever been.
So how can brands find bloggers to work with on an influencer marketing campaign? You have a few good options at your disposal, ranging from manual search methods to the use of PayPerPost’s Discovery influencer search tools.
Prepping for Your Blogger Search
Before you start actively searching, though, it’s essential to know what you’re looking for. Looking for bloggers isn’t the first step to a successful blog influencer marketing campaign. Taking some time to clearly define customer demographics, target geography and your specific content niche will help make your campaign a success. It will also make it easier to find just the right blogger to work with.
Your customer demographics and target geography should be fairly easy to define as these goals may already be identified in your broader marketing strategy. If you’re trying to market a specific product from your line, though, you might want to get even more specific about who you’re trying to reach and where they might live.
If your brand sells kitchen gadgets, for example, and you want to find a blogger to work with in promoting a new tool that easily shreds vegetables into noodles, you might want to think about which people are most interested in eating more vegetables or substituting zucchini for traditional wheat pasta, and what they might see as aspirational. A vegan or gluten-free blogger living in California or an urban center like New York would probably be a good match for that product.
Thinking through these details ahead of time makes it a lot easier to pick the right blogger to work with. Remember that engagement quality and product relevance really matters. It’s not just about finding the blogger with the biggest following—a woodworking blogger with millions of followers probably isn’t going to sell many zoodle cutters for you because their audience likely isn’t going to that blogger to learn how to cook healthy. That’s why pre-search strategy is so important.
Influencer Search Tools
If you want to make things easy, you can simply use PayPerPost to find bloggers who fit all the needs you identified during your strategic planning sessions. PayPerPost uses the IZEAx Discovery influencer search tool to plug users into a wide network of creators and influencers in a wide variety of content niches.
Using this tool, you can identify bloggers within your niche, then refine results based on criteria like age, location and follower count. As we said above, follower count isn’t the only criterion to consider when you’re choosing which blogger or bloggers might be the right fit for your campaign. But that doesn’t mean you should automatically reject influencers who have a lot of followers. It’s best to see follower count as one factor in a wide range of selection criteria that you need to consider.
The IZEAx Discovery tool makes it possible to create a list of suitable bloggers to reach out to for your campaign. You can quickly and easily get the results you need without having to do an exhaustive search. Before reaching out, though, you should take the time to investigate the influencer’s various content platforms.
Take a look at social media to see how often the influencer posts, what kind of engagement they get and how they respond to followers. See if their overall aesthetic seems like a good match for your brand. Check out the influencer’s previous sponsored posts to see if they’ve gotten a positive response from their audience.
You should also do a thorough survey of the influencer’s blog. Make sure the writing style matches with what you need, and again, take a look at any previous sponsored posts. Consider engaging on some of the blogger’s recent posts so your initial contact doesn’t come out of the blue. You can do this on social media as well so the blogger can check out your brand’s social presence and get a better sense of what you need.
Manual Search Techniques
Though tools like PayPerPost’s influencer search database are helpful for quick blogger discovery, there are other ways to look for bloggers. They just aren’t as efficient or easy.
One such way to look for bloggers is to do an old-school search engine investigation. This method is time consuming, and it doesn’t give you the same high-level perspective and quick decision-making abilities that a tool like PayPerPost’s IZEAx Discovery influencer search tool does. However, this process is useful when you want to go digging and see who you can find.
All you really have to do is identify what your niche is, then enter a search term like “vegan recipe blog” or “vegan blogger” into a search engine. Note that search engines like Google tend to provide personalized results based on a user’s location and previous search history. You can do things like use your browser’s incognito mode and clearing your browser cache to prevent results changing based on your previous searches. You can also use a virtual private network (VPN) to change the search engine’s interpretation of your physical location. This is helpful if you want to look for bloggers who live in or discuss a specific area that’s different from where you are right now.
Understand that if you do things this way, you aren’t seeing results that are optimized for you, and you’ll have to manually comb through all the results you get. You may have to dig pretty deep to find what you’re looking for because factors like domain age (i.e., how old the website is) can impact placement in search engine results pages.
Another technique for manual blogger discovery is to comb through hashtags on social media sites. Instagram may be particularly effective as that’s a platform that content creators tend to lean on pretty heavily. Come up with a list of relevant keywords for your niche, then search those via Instagram’s discovery tab. Again, you’ll need to comb through a lot of results to sort the wheat from the chaff, and the time investment may not be worth it given the fact that there are more efficient tools available for you to use.
What to Do Next
No matter which technique you use to find a blogger, you should be sure to take a careful approach to outreach. Take the time to look into the blogger’s work and find out some things about what makes them unique. That’s information you can then use to craft a personal, professional outreach message asking about collaboration.
Don’t use a form to reach out to bloggers. There’s no better way to get an automatic no, or a non-response, than to use the wrong name, leave a mad-libs-style blank space or otherwise indicate that you’re using a form for outreach. Double check details like the blogger’s name spelling and the name of their blog. You want your first impression to be a good one.
It doesn’t have to be hard to find the right bloggers to work with in promoting your brand. It just takes some careful planning and detail-oriented execution. PayPerPost can make it easier with a handy influencer discovery tool to take some of the legwork out of the process.