BRANDS & YOUR BLOG: PART 1 (APPROACH)
So Cassie Daves and I have been discussing this topic in secret and I think it’s the appropriate time to share my thoughts.
Since I started blogging I’ve been privileged to work with a substantial amount of brands, see them HERE. Both in Nigeria and internationally. With that, I have noticed a lot of difference in the business of blogging in Nigeria and abroad. Many of which are not favorable to Nigerian bloggers.
I’d be doing a series on this topic, and this is the first of three. Today’s topic is “Approach”. I hope a fellow blogger or brand would read this and effect some changes in their PR & business activities.
Many Nigerian companies approach bloggers for brand exposure (meaning they acknowledge your value & influence). However, the remuneration and manner of approach they bring to us sometimes isn’t the most encouraging. Let me give you a vivid example of a UK company that mailed me for partnership, Versus a Nigerian company.
“Hello Tosin, Trust you’re doing well. I’m Mark from xxxx company, We got your mail from the contact section of your blog. My team was doing an online round-up of Nigerian bloggers and africanismcosmopolitan.com came up. Your content is fresh and original which resonates with what our brand stands for, we especially loved your post on xxxxxx. That being said, we’d be honoured if you’re interested in participating in our new campaign targeted at youths between ages 18-29. For now our company cannot afford to give cash compensations but is willing to offer you products worth £200, with an extra 10% coupon code for your readers. You’d be given the liberty to choose the products you want from our website embedded HERE.
Kindly let us know if this is something that would interest you. Our company & Campaign information can be found here & here, do not hesitate to reply this mail with any questions you may have.
Mark Cumming( Marketing & PR)
Good day sir/ma,
Please find attached a press release for your blog, Our company xxxx is currently undergoing a new brand campaign, we have selected a number of bloggers in Nigeria, and you’ve been included. Kindly send your mailing address and contact number so we could send you a product from our new range. Otherwise you can pick up from our outlet at No. X, xxxx street, xxxx, Lagos.
You can reply this mailing address with any question you may have,
We anticipate your response,
Follow us on twitter, Facebook & Instagram
Toun Okoro ( xxxx company)
Notice the difference in the manner of approach. Both companies may/may not have a budget for this campaign, however if I were to do a free post/review/advert, the company I’d choose is clear. The first company did the following:
- Addressed me with my name
- Mentioned my blog and referred to a post (showed they went through/acknowledge my work)
- Mentioned their target audience to show its in line with my readers.
- Explained that they do not have a monetary form of remuneration currently.
- Offered a substantial compensation, that could add value to me and my blog readers.
- Left contact details and a website to learn more about them.
- Asked/hoped if I’d be Interested, not assumptous.
WHEREAS THE NIGERIAN COMPANY
- Referred to me as sir/ma.
- Did not mention my blog or name (makes it seem impersonal or was a mass email request)
- Did not tell me about their campaign or where I could learn more.
- Said I was ‘included’ as though it was something I applied for.
- Assumed I had an obligation to publish their attached press release.
- Overall message seemed imposing, instead of coming off as a proposal for consideration.
To bloggers what I’m saying is this, These companies approached you for a reason, they felt you could add value to them some sort of way, hence you should be seen as an asset to their company. As a blogger you fall under advertising and media, which is included in their yearly budget.
What you spend your time, energy and money on you value. So when these companies approach you, see yourself as an asset as well.
Many big name firms would approach you, which truthfully is a great opportunity, but in business there is no charity. Partnerships favours BOTH parties either monetary or not.
So as a blogger do not say ‘ WOW Apple contacted me to review their new watch” Instead think like this “I’m glad Apple reached out to me, it shows my hard work, online platform and audience base is well valued”.
Point is this, don’t sell yourself short. Freebies won’t pay for your internet data, camera or domain name maintenance.
I hope this post communicates my thoughts well, I sincerely do not mean to sound abrupt, I just feel Nigerian businesses have a lot to improve on as regards their business modules and marketing efforts.
The next post on this topic would be on ‘Budgets and Fees”. The money aspect of blogging.
Please Feel free to share, drop a comment and ask questions below.
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