I’ve worked with several brands over the course of the last three years and I’ve read many posts by bloggers working with brands. They go on a trip and you hear all about what they’ve done but what does this do for the company? Have you ever wondered about this? Curious about why the company flew this mom across county and what is it they both got out of it? What were the company’s objectives and if a blogger writes about a great trip will it brand the company or sell more products? What is the risk and cost for the company, is it worth it for them to continue working with bloggers long term?

Becoming loyal to a brand after learning the ins and outs of the company, having questions answered with transparency and honesty and feeling supported by the company, certainly makes me want to say nice things about the company but does it push sales? As a blogger I certainly want companies to continue working with me and with other bloggers, so I feel there has to be deliverable goals achieved by the blogger – especially if they are being paid. What does this mean? Is it possible to prove one blogger is linked to moving cases of a product? Probably not but I’m certain a campaign with several bloggers can be linked to an increase of sales. I’m also certain that it does something for their branding and market research.

What can you do as a blogger when working with a brand:

Clear Expectations. Know what the company is looking for out of the deal. If you have a contract that is one example but how about asking them what their campaign goals and objectives are. Is there a push to move product, find out more about what consumers think about a product, brand a particular division of their company or campaign? Knowing this information can help YOU as a blogger  in crafting your posts or providing a company with feedback.

Give Back. If you are being paid (and you should be) then make sure you’re giving them feedback, ideas and contributing to the goals and objectives. If there is a focus group, add your creative thoughts to the mix and prove your worth.

Ask. Yes, ask for what YOU need. Do you need banners or buttons created that would help you with your post or campaign? Do you need a resource, quote or image for your content? If you have an event or conference that you believe the company could or should sponsor and you can provide metrics for them (they have to get something out of the sponsorship), ask. It is a two way street but if you’re a business and they’re a business treat it this way. Partnerships can be friendly and supportive.

Be Professional. Laugh, tell jokes and be yourself but when you write a post think back to the goals and objectives the company has. If they’re going to keep working with you they need to know you haven’t forgotten the point of why they’re working with you. You know your audience so be yourself but if all you do is write about the dinners you ate on the trip, the great concert you saw and plush hotel room – what did the company gain from this? More bloggers wanting to work with them for “trips” probably is not one of their business goals!

Bottom line, we want brands and companies to continue working with our community so we have to make sure the cost and risk for them equals effort on the bloggers end and results that align with everyone’s goals and objectives.

What other tips do you have?

Why not? Great tips for free!

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