I’ve been at this blogging thing since November 2008. In the past almost-decade, I’ve learned a thing or two. There are many types of blogs: some are just basically online diaries for the blogger. Others take on more of a business focus.
One thing I’ve done a bit of over the years is work with brands and companies. You may wonder why a brand would work with a blogger. What’s in it for the brand?
Probably the main reason brands work with bloggers is to increase their visibility or online presence. Almost every brand is hungry for “linky juice” as the online lingo goes. What does this mean? Well, say I link to a brand like Behrman Communications, or RitterSport, or Nancy Behrman. Internet search engines take note of the fact that I have linked to them in my blog, and this increases the chances that those brands will come up higher in search results. It really doesn’t have much (if anything) to do with me as a blogger — it’s all about helping the company. The more “linky juice” a company has, the more often people will find it in internet searches. And generally, the more people find you online, the higher your sales.
Content and Photos
Often, brands and companies contact bloggers and ask if the blogger would write a review of their product. Brands like photos, too. In this way, brands can gain a professionally-written post about their goods, and often gorgeous photos as well. I have to feel that working with bloggers is a cost-effective way for a brand to gain content.
Another benefit companies glean from working with bloggers is feedback. Hopefully for the company, this feedback is positive. For instance, for years I partnered with Chick-fil-A as part of their Mom Bloggers panel. They sent me coupons to try new products, and things like this. In return, I often posted about them on my blog and on social media. If I tried their peach milkshake and loved it, I was likely to post a photo of it on Instagram. This results in positive word-of-mouth for a brand, which is worth far more to them than they “paid” by giving me a certificate for a free shake. In fact, at times I would think about this and feel that I was selling myself short in my work with brands. But that’s a topic for another day 🙂 Positive feedback and positive word-of-mouth is something all brands are eager to earn for themselves.
Those are the major ways I can think of that brands benefit from working with bloggers. What do you think? Why might a brand or company want to work with a blogger? Have you ever become a customer of a brand as a result of reading about it on a blog?