London is one of the hottest cities in the world, maybe not in temperature, but definitely in terms of setting the pace of worldwide trends. What started as a hobby then passion for all things social media, has turned into a career where I help different types of businesses add to this narrative, engage with their customers via social media and ultimately help them to grow. As we celebrate all things London with the London Lifestyle Awards 2017, here are the top 5 tips and themes that I have noted consistently with businesses that are curious about social media engagement and specifically how to get bloggers to blog about them.

Social Media Presence

The first is a nice and easy quick win. You’d be surprised how many businesses are keen to connect with bloggers via social media, yet don’t have a social media strategy themselves. In this day and age everybody wants information at their fingertips - keep your social media up to date! By doing this not only will your customers be more engaged, they can get information who you are, what you’re doing and anything exciting coming up. The reason people click that unfollow button literally and figuratively is because if you can’t keep up to date, there is no reason for them to keep up with you.

Bloggers are the same in the first instance. When I’m looking for something new and interesting to blog about that I may have heard about through the grapevine, the first place I stop is their social media. If the last post was 8 months ago it’s something that is likely to turn me off and push me to the next place on my list. Bloggers ultimately want something interesting to write about. It’s all well and good having the best products/services, but if people don’t know about it you’re not going to effectively build a solid follower base.

Social Calendar (Pencil me in)

If you’re not sure as to where to start with your social media strategy, thinking of the London social scene is a good place to start. With many seasonal and annual events such as London Fashion Week, London Cocktail Week, festival season etc. There are many opportunities for you to find synergies with these events that you can potentially attach yourself to that would peak a bloggers interest in actually writing about you. Thinking of your target customer base, the thought process should go like this: the type of event they would be interested in and the blogger who might be interested in covering the event. If you have access to said events inviting the blogger along to do a write up about you is a good place to start. This makes for a much more interesting blog post to write. Bloggers want to talk about the hot new thing. Do something that make bloggers want to talk about you.

Often imitated, rarely ever duplicated… duplicated well, anyway

The copycat syndrome! Whilst there are many great ideas worth replicating you don’t always want to be in the race for second place. Challenge the status quo by not always going with what your competition is doing. Bloggers like to write about things that no one has ever done before.

Instead of trying to take 10% of a 100 customers, target 100% of 100 customers by doing something new - innovation. The fact that nobody else is doing it is doing it is going to make everybody want to talk about it. Bloggers will be excited about writing something unique that is hot off the press.

Some of the work that I do is not only helping companies polish off their social media presence, it’s also about getting them to think about doing something that hasn’t been done before. Be a leader, not a copycat. You have a first movers advantage of getting a blogger to write about you if they’re writing about something that hasn’t been written about 50 times before.

Hi nice to meet you – Build relationships before pitching

When you’re thinking of the bloggers that influence your space the most, what are the type of things that they write about? Do your research! If you’re struggling to know what you can do to be innovative, building relationships with these bloggers who are influential in your space is critical. The same people who follow bloggers are the same people who could potentially be your customers. Don’t underestimate the power of an influencer.

As great as it is to have all the different types of businesses come to me, whether it’s to promote them or for me to help with their social media strategy, you’d be surprised how often I’m contacted by people who are interested in my numbers, but have very little understanding as to who I am, my platform and the things that I cover.  Whilst I’m happy to help all types of businesses with their social media strategy, when it comes to writing blog posts or collaborating it has to be in line with my follower base and the same theme of what I usually cover.

For example, I once had a bridal wear designer contact me. As amazing as her designs and dresses were, there are no signs on any of my platforms that would suggest that my target audience are people looking to get married. This was a misaligned shot. My target audience are young adults who who aren’t necessarily looking for wedding dresses, but are definitely looking for the best place get a daiquiri on a Saturday night in London

Don’t send a mass email to bloggers just because of their numbers, instead show that you have a genuine interest in their platform and how both brands can collaborate. Spontaneous invites can have a place too, but you will receive a better result when you understand the blogger and they can see you have a vision as to how you can collaborate.

Which blogger?

As I’ve mentioned in some of the points above, picking the right blogger to collaborate with is a delicate important balance, depending on the size of our business and the budget you have for marketing. Whilst it may be desirable to collaborate with a blogger with a million followers, it’s not always necessary, especially if your budget is limited. Remember this is about real sustainable growth rather than a temporary spike in your numbers.

Stay sassy, xoxo