Filed Under Social Marketing
These days, word-of-mouth carries a lot more weight with consumers than traditional advertising. According to a Nielsen survey, only 53% of people trust content that a business posts on its blog and website while 92% trust recommendations that come from their peers.
For small businesses, that means connecting with community influencers is essential for success. Large companies can benefit from reaching out on a local level as well. Reaching out to bloggers and turning them into brand advocates for your business can give you a lot of different voices giving their support for your business.
Partnering your brand with local bloggers is an amazing way to reach a broader audience and gain new customers. Build a solid relationship with the bloggers who are supporting your brand and they will create content that will help potential customers gain confidence in your brand.
If you want to start getting bloggers to advocate your brand, here are seven things you should be doing:
Find out who the influencers are.
Look at who your local bloggers are and start making contact with them. See how they would feel about forming a relationship with your business. Read their content to see if their voice is a good one for your brand and if they’re audience is one that will be interested in your products and services.
Be strategic with your hashtags.
When you use Twitter, find out what hashtags you can use that include your location, such as #DallasWeddings or #FloridaPhotography. This lets you create a community of bloggers, customers and other local businesses that can be connected to you online.
Make sure you are creating opportunities to meet up with people in your community in person. Invite local bloggers into your brick-and-mortar location to get to know each other and start building a rapport.
Use location-based services.
How to Get Bloggers Talking About Your Brand
If you haven’t done it already, sign up for Google+ Local and complete your business profile. This makes your business easy to find when someone performs a search for local businesses. Post photos and videos as well as customer reviews.
Ask customers to post reviews online.
Ask your customers to post reviews online and be sure to thank them when they do. Having positive online reviews that can easily be found by potential customers, as well as the local bloggers, gives your business greater credibility.
A referral program is an excellent way to generate buzz about your brand and get more advocates supporting your business. By offering incentives, you get more people out their talking about your business and being true fans. These are the people that potential customers are listening to, both online and off.
Social media is a great tool for reaching out to loyal customers. You can use it to offer first-looks at new products or special promotions. Give your advocates that feeling of being connected to your brand and they will be your biggest supporters. Make it easy for people to connect with you by posting links to your social media pages wherever you can: email, newsletters, and bottoms of receipts, fliers, menus, your vehicle, television and print ads.
Having an online community of bloggers and even just loyal customers buzzing about your brand can go a lot further than the priciest advertising. Word-of-mouth is gaining more importance in a time where everyone is ready to share their thoughts online. Take advantage of it by building a network of bloggers who are happy to spread the word about your business to their audience.
Do you know how to find local bloggers in your community? Do you have a network of bloggers already established?