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by James Perrin on 23rd November 2011
For brands, working with bloggers to enhance or your reputation isn’t exactly anything new. However it’s continued usage is a testament to how effective, powerful and influential it can be when writing positive comments or posts about a specific brand or their products and services.
Recent data from Technorati’s State of the Blogosphere 2011 has revealed that blogging about brands is more popular than ever. However, the relationship between brands and bloggers could be improved somewhat, to allow for better online PR and user engagement.
eMarketer have published the data from the State of the Blogosphere 2011 report which details exactly how bloggers feel when writing about brands, how influential it is and what their relationship with said brands is like. The report gives some fascinating insights as seen in the table below.
For example, when it comes to writing about brands they love or hate, 38% of bloggers are actively involved in writing pieces. A further 34% of bloggers actually write product or service reviews for brands, with more professional writers, either part time or full time being more likely to write about such brands as opposed to those who write as a hobby.
So, we’ve established that bloggers, more so professional ones, like to write about brands. The staggering thing is the influence blogs have over readers and other bloggers, with 68% of bloggers saying that they are actually influenced by other blogs they read.
For any business it is therefore important to establish good working relationships with bloggers and web writers. A previous case study [See: Arsenal FC See the Power of Online PR] has shown the influence this can have over readers who subsequently re-distribute your content with tweets, and promote it as a useful piece with many more Facebook Likes and Google +1s.
Therefore the relationship that brands have with bloggers will really determine whether or not they will write about you, your products or services in a favourable light, especially professional bloggers as we’ve already established.
In the State of the Blogosphere 2011 report it was revealed that 49% of bloggers described their relationship with representatives from brands as ‘very favourably’, whilst a worrying 40% of bloggers didn’t know how to describe their relationship or their interactions with brands. This then points to brands, and their need to reach out to bloggers and form more favourable interactions with bloggers. However that’s easier said than done.
Brand representatives need to ensure that what they are asking of the bloggers isn’t too much, after all 17% of bloggers said that those representatives had asked for them to write about things which would compromise their credibility. The more knowledgeable and interested you are in a blogger and their work, the more they will appreciate you and what your brand is about.
However the most important thing is to provide bloggers with useful content that you know will be of value to them and the readers. Bloggers can work wonders, but they’re not miracle makers – so if you have thin material or low value news, it won’t travel too far. In any case, it’s important for brands to improve their communication and relationship with bloggers, given just how powerful they are becoming.