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Ultimate guide to brand collaborations with a digital marketing agency!

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Whether you are building a small, growing blog or schedule targeted posts every day, you should always be prepared for your first (or 100th) collaboration request, especially if you are planning on making blogging your full-time job. You should question how best to attract PR brands to your website. Could your website do more to spark the interest of brands? Where can you find interested brands and how should you approach them?  Should you use an Instagram growth service to increase your following?

To shed some light on what exactly PR brands are looking for, I teamed up with Outreach and Communications Executive, Emily Cocker of London SEO Agency, Bigfoot Digital. Emily has extensive experience working in the world of digital marketing, which she has acquired following graduation from her degree in Magazine Journalism at The University of Sunderland. Emily loves working at Bigfoot Digital as it gives her the perfect platform to explore her passion for digital communications.

Read on to benefit from her experience working with bloggers on brand collaborations.

1) How do you find bloggers to work with?

I usually start my search on Google to see which sites return the best results for relevant keywords. This gives me a good indication as to the optimisation of your website. We use a tool called Majestic SEO, which shows your domain authority, trust flow and backlink history – we always check!

Other great tools we use include Buzzsumo and Followerwonk, which are used to search for social media influencers based on tweet ratios, followers and page authority. This can also be used to search for trending content on social media.

I always look on social media for bloggers who have a genuine interest in brand collaborations. I often favour connecting with bloggers on social media over automated PR emails that will usually end up landing in your junk, which is not ideal. We reach out to bloggers using the hashtags #bloggerswanted and #bloggersrequired, so keep a look out for those.

2) What should bloggers do?   

These things are a must when looking for collaborative opportunities. Take note of the following:

  • A responsive website: Having a website that ranks well on Google is always a plus in our eyes.
  • Having a media pack – this saves time when searching for your online statistics (monthly followers, audience, contacts etc.)
  • Being friendly and open to opportunities – we always approach influencers with an open mind and would appreciate the same from you guys.
  • Using social media – and by using, we mean connecting with followers, not just automated posts. Lylia Rose does a great job – check out her Twitter
  • Following up on posts – connecting with us on social media and sending links to published content. We’re busy people, like you, so an update on our content is a nice touch.

3) What shouldn’t bloggers do? 

We have found the following to be a turn-off when it comes to collaborations:  

  • Sending email, after email – if we have agreed a collaboration, it’s clear, we love your website and want to work with you. There’s no need to spam my inbox!
  • Not knowing your stats – it’s your blog and you should know your audience inside and out.
  • Overcharging… Domain authority: 5, Social media following: 50, Charge: £100!!

4)  Social media following or domain authority…?

In an ideal world, you will have an exceptionally optimised website and a loyal social media following. A domain authority of 20+ is preferred. However, if you don’t fall into this category, but have a following of over 15k then we obviously want to hear from you. Social media is important, as most bloggers post regular links to published content, which results in maximum exposure.

5) Are bloggers a part of your marketing strategy?

It depends on the client. We have a long list of clients from interior designers, home renovation companies, lifestyle and food brands, so there’s always an opportunity to collaborate. We create bespoke strategies for our clients, and PR collaborations are often favoured as a great brand awareness tool.

I personally think bloggers bring a lot to a digital strategy as there is so much variety out there and they are great people to work with. We are open to different collaborations and always account for the tone and style of the blog in question – it’s a two-way street!