Blogging has created many new opportunities for brand managers at large companies and small businesses to get publicity to new market from a trusted source. Many bloggers ask brand managers for sample products to review. How can you as a brand manger determine where to invest your time? And if you are a blogger, how can you build trust with a brand manager so they want to send you the product? This article will discuss the ways bloggers can develop good relations with bloggers.

11 Tips for Bloggers

1. Contact the public relations person. Start by contacting the right person. The PR person is in charge of product reviews. Don’t go to the advertising manager or the new media manager. The PR person holds the keys to the product kingdom in most cases. There might be a brand manager or a product manager who runs the show, but send your request to the PR person.
2. Make sure the product is a good fit for your blog. The PR person is going to look to see if your content and audience are the right match for the product. If you have a blog about cooking and you request a handbag for review, show the PR person why that would be a good fit for your audience, otherwise, the PR person might think you just want to get a free handbag.
3. Show your numbers. Send information about your analytics. Who comes to your site? How often? What kind of people are they? Share as many demographic info as you can. This will build trust and could get you the product you seek. To solidify your claim, send a screen shot from a third party source that can verify your statistics.
4. Be professional. PR people are used to working with reporters and reviewers at major publications and trade journals. They are also pitched by dozens of scammers every week who want free stuff. So they tend to want you to prove that your blog is a good fit for their audience and that the quality of your audience justifies their investment in sending you the product (not to mention the time to report the activity, put it in their budget and track results).
5. Ask about return policies. Does the company want to receive the product back? Find out. Also find out who pays the shipping. The company will usually provide a pre-paid return delivery shipment form. Some companies will gladly part with an expensive laptop computer, but other companies could want their flat-screen TV returned. Find out before you get billed for the product!
6. Be patient. PR people get hit on by scammers who want products that they will use or sell on eBay and have no intention of reviewing. PR people need to verify who you are and make sure your audience is a good match for them.
7. Realize that every company has a budget for review products. They might have only a certain number of products that can be let out for review. In a world with limited resources, realize that your request might not be at the top of their most-important list of reviewers. So that makes it even more important to follow the tips in this article to prove that you are a good fit for the company.
8. Stay in touch. Keep the PR person in the loop on your progress. Send them a copy of the review. Ask questions if you need help understanding how to use the product. They will be happy to answer your questions or put you in touch with a person who can.
9. Build your reputation. If you comment on larger blogs that cover the industry, you will become known by brand managers. You should also read and comment on the company’s blog or the brand’s blog as well so PR people get to know your name.
10. Get publicity for yourself and your blog. The more well known you are, the more brands will want to work with you. If you are big enough, the brands might very well seek you out and ask you to review their products!
11. Write about trends. These posts will be indexed by Google and PR people will find those posts. This is a great way to get known by PR people.

If you follow any of these tips, you’ll stand a better chance of growing your own brand and your blog!

Dan Janal helps speakers, authors and small businesses get publicity so they can sell more products and get more speaking engagements. I make this happen with coaching, consulting, done-for-you services and do-it-yourself tools. For info, go to www.prleadsplus.com or call me at 952-380-1554.