For a long time companies have reached out to bloggers with information on product reviews, exclusive news, and other insight into industries. This information was valuable to bloggers since they could use it to improve the content on their site and gain readership. Often these relationships were personal – individual emails were sent to bloggers with personalized messages.
Recent studies find this relationship is suffering.
Among all bloggers, 55% said they review products or brands rarely or never, up slightly from the 53% who said the same in Technorati’s “State of the Blogosphere 2009” report. Among “hobbyist” bloggers—the most common kind—the drop was similar.
…bloggers are dissatisfied with how brands are treating them. Nearly two-thirds of all blogger respondents said they felt bloggers were treated less professionally by brand representatives than were members of the traditional media, and hobbyist bloggers were most likely to hold that view.
There is the problem.
What’s the solution?
Brands can look to increase their own blogging activity. Depending on bloggers to write about your company and products is risky. As you can see from the article linked above this practice is becoming less popular. By maintaining a blog of their own companies can control the content released about their brand.
With proper strategy, companies can actually attract bloggers to the company blog by writing intriguing content. If the content is good enough bloggers will link to the company blog with their own added insight and thoughts. This was the original goal to begin with so it’s a win-win: connect with bloggers plus the benefits of having a company blog.
A Few More Tips
If your company is struggling to connect with bloggers you could try offering to write a guest post. Make sure each post is unique to one site. Blogs and website run into duplicate content issues when they publish press release-type posts that companies have sent to several bloggers.
It takes more effort, but being personal with bloggers and understanding what their blog is about is important. It’s worth the effort to make a connection with an individual blogger where you understand the type of content they are looking for and how you can provide value to them.