Today’s bloggers can have more of a fan following than celebrities and they often speak through agents, sign book deals and are more influential than people who have been in the lime light for decades! Zoella became the fastest-selling author in 2014 selling over 78,000 copies in its first week alone. Just to reiterate, a beauty blogger enjoyed the highest first week’s sales of a debut author EVER!
But where do we really stand as PR’s in the age of the famous blogger campaign? Well I would argue that our role has never been more important. We want to create mutual respect and a relationship that is beneficial for both brand and blogger, build great contacts and integrate this amplification into our traditional media work.
Last week saw Ferne McCann (from TOWIE) launch her food blog Fashionable Foodie and in its first week she has received significant national and online media coverage. With blog launches now receiving this sort of promotion and subsequent traffic, it would seem that those who are already in the public eye are turning to blogs to further their reach, and ultimately career. And why not! Escapade and many other companies have already started to work with Ferne and the blog’s fresh classy feel will surely make it success. We worked closely with Ferne’s agent during this time, which was to be expected for a celebrity, but we are starting to see more and more of the bloggers we work with turning to agents to manage PR approaches.
Building a relationship between brand and blogger takes time. The personable nature of bloggers is their strength, but can also make them hesitant to talk about money for fear of missing out on opportunities or ruining relationships. As sponsored posts become more frequent, an agent is able to take the difficult financial pressures away, allowing bloggers to concentrate on the creative, rather than getting bogged down in the negotiation.
And blogs are all about the creative! I read blogs to entertain, inspire, encourage and motivate me. Bloggers have the ‘human touch’ and the products they promote instantly have an attainable feel. It’s not all glossy pictures, this is real life! So when Google got tough with bloggers by removing brands and bloggers from search who failed to declare they are being sponsored, and brought the issue to the foreground earlier late last year everyone suddenly had to listen and take note that the world had changed… after all, “a foodie mom blogger with a following can sell more dishwashers than Jessica Simpson in a sudsy bikini!”
The essence of every project, whether it’s working with clients, journalists and bloggers is respect. Professional bloggers have worked hard to get where they are today, and for many this is their full-time job. When they take on a brand, they welcome it into a space they have created; their space, a personal and business space.
British Beauty Blogger, Jane Cunningham, recently went into detail about the poor approaches she regularly receives: “I’ve seen a huge surge in emails where brands assume that the entitlement (of product coverage) is purely theirs.”
Poppy Dinsey also recently took to her Instagram and Twitter accounts to name and shame those that she wasn’t happy with, and in the same week shouted out to those she had an excellent relationship with, it works both ways: “Props to @escapadePR @vccpkin & @halpernPR for always approaching with detailed briefs & expectations of both sides. Make’s life much easier!” As PR’s it’s our job to provide briefs that are clear and that we honestly think suit the blogger, with an aim to build a longstanding relationship both as an agency and the brand. And similarly respectfully go our separate ways if the product or price just isn’t right.
It’s certainly a really exciting space, and one we thoroughly enjoy playing in! All this said…How many blogs have you read this week compared to how many Instagram images you have viewed? Just throwing that out there, maybe the wind will change again soon and we will be sending an image with a 50 word caption to get our coverage?
Our consumer lifestyle PR team specialise in connecting everyday brands with everyday people across four core sectors; Consumer Lifestyle PR, Food & Drink PR, Consumer Technology PR and Sport, Health & Wellbeing PR. More information on these areas of knowledge can be found at www.escapadepr.com/about-us.