When I started blogging in October 2007, I had no idea that the term “Social media” existed, and I certainly didn’t know what it meant. I also didn’t have any idea that in a few short years, brands would be valuing MY voice and MY opinion. My journey into the world of social media has been fun and exciting, but it has also been a lot of work…but surprisingly, it’s work that I enjoy doing.
I have had the opportunity to work with many brands over the last few years, doing things ranging from testing products and providing feedback to sponsored posts and reviews on my blog. Just a few years ago, I was “just a mom” (something, by the way, that I have always taken great pride in). Now, I am a Mom with Influence. And I love it.
Why should brands listen to and hire bloggers?
- The power of the purse: Not all bloggers are mothers, but many of them are, and moms tend to make the majority of the buying decisions for the family. Brands should concentrate efforts on those that are making the decisions.
- The influence of personal experiences: Bloggers share stories, opinions, and experiences with a personal touch. An ad will never have as much influence as a personal recommendation. The blogosphere has been described as the “new front porch.” While we may be hard pressed to find neighbors chatting on the front porch and sharing stories about local businesses, blogging “neighbors” do visit each other regularly and share experiences with each other.
- Networks work and community is key: This is especially important for companies that are just starting to establish their social media presence. Brands that tap into the social networks that bloggers have already established will be able to establish a base of followers and future clients more quickly than trying to build it on their own. And people are more likely to listen to the opinion of someone they know or feel like they can trust.
- Do what you’re good at: And leave the what you’re not good at to someone who can do it better. Bloggers who are also active on Facebook and twitter not only have an established audience, but know how to engage conversations, retweets, shares, and click-overs.
- Passion proves it: My favorite campaigns have been those that have allowed me to develop an on-going relationship and conversation with a brand. When I get deeply involved with a product or a company and love what they are doing and selling, I will be passionate about it, and passion cannot be held back, nor can it be faked.
I’ve worked with many brands individually as well as through networks that I belong to. I love the excitement of being contacted by a brand that I love and would love to work with. But I’ve also realized that I have something to offer and shouldn’t necessarily wait for them to come to me. Recently, on GigCoin, I created a pitch for writing sponsored posts. I’ve also been able to list pitches to build a twitter following for a brand and for sidebar advertising. I’m excited to see where they go, and what other opportunities will come my way.
As a blogger, what are your favorite types of gigs to work on? And as a brand, how do you envision or prefer working with bloggers?
Disclosure: This post was sponsored by GigCoin but the thoughts and opinions (and the work put into it) are solely my own.
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