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NY WICI Event Recap:  Extend Your Visibility & Unlock the Secrets of Influential Bloggers 

This is a guest post by Nick Wright, an Account Coordinator for LKPR, Inc.

The New York Women in Communications (NYWICI) Digital Salon breakfast was a great way to start off “Web Wednesday” at this year’s Communications Week. Hosted by NYWICI, the session was led by Sherri Langburt, President of Single Edition Media, who discussed how organizations and brands can work together to leverage their brand by connecting with influential bloggers and best practices for doing so. 

At the offices of David and Gilbert, LLC, Sherri kicked off the breakfast session by sharing the six myths about bloggers that brands shouldn’t worry about:  

Myth #1: Bloggers get a kick out of writing negative reviews. Sherri addressed this by explaining how bloggers want to do the opposite. They want to build relationships with brands and agencies and not tarnish them.

Myth #2: Bloggers are only in it for the money. Sherri explained that many bloggers are not in it only for the money, but as an outlet as well as for causes. She stated that many bloggers also build relationships with other bloggers and are very passionate about their blogs. It is not all for the money but in forging relationships and bolstering credibility.

Myth #3: Only “high profile” bloggers are worth the investment. This was a very interesting myth because many people, especially in PR, struggle with whom to choose for their blogger outlets. Sherri said that impressions do not ALWAYS matter. Working with just one high profile blogger might not be as good of a strategy as having many decent sized profile bloggers on your rolodex. It all depends on what you are trying to achieve with the brand.

Myth #4:  Bloggers are not “real” journalists. Sherri had some great points to prove this to be a myth. She pointed out that bloggers often have more flexibility and freedom than traditional journalists; they can also be very fast and more creative with content and turn their work around sooner. Social media and buzz-building is often connected with blog posts, and content usually stays on the blog sites so it is constantly benefitting the client.

Myth #5: It is impossible to calculate ROI - to which Sherri explained the ins and outs of bloggers’ unique tracking codes and other ways to show how to calculate ROI. She suggested that traffic, impressions, and CTRs are all ways to measure ROI.

Myth #6: It is too hard to find, vet and manage bloggers. She mentioned that there are many blogger networks and Internet sites including Bloglovin.com to find good blogger sources. She also discussed how to use social media as an outlet as well as hashtags and specific searches to connect with bloggers. There are also conventions, LinkedIn groups and networks to attend or join that help other bloggers connect.

After discussing and debunking the six myths about bloggers, Sherri went into different types of campaigns where using a blogger could benefit your brand. She covered reviews, testimonials, contests, challenges, sweepstakes, virtual and live events, offers, incentives, tutorials and interviews. Depending on your needs and goals, there are many ways you can work with bloggers and run a successful campaign.

Sherri also mentioned that the duration of a good campaign should always be less than one month. Campaigns can become very big and are fun to run as well as be involved in, but if it lasts over a month they can lose momentum or become too drawn out.

The final discussion of the session was about the quantitative and qualitative sides of bloggers. Sherri mentioned we should take into consideration Google Play Rank, Domain Authority, Alexa Rank and Social Media for the quantitative side. These are good tools in measuring blogger visibility. For the qualitative side, she mentioned simple and expected attributes included engagement, competence, expertise and generosity. These help measure a blogger’s professional qualities and how they work.

The discussion was very informative and shed light on the fact that bloggers are more than just exposure. They are a great source for brands and organizations to connect with and can help unlock true success.