You’re working your booty off building your business and trying to get the word out there through social media and other strategies, but you're not quite sure how to take things up a notch. Don’t worry fellow bosses, we know a thing or two about getting our brand featured and we’re excited to share 3 DIY strategies we’ve used to do just that!
Write Valuable Blog Posts
Looking for people to pay attention to your brand? Our first step of advice is to create valuable content on your blog. Not only does it allow you to showcase your expertise with your current audience (and improve your SEO) but when you share useful information people will take notice! What’s the key to getting people to care? Share your posts! You may already be using your posts in your social media marketing and email marketing strategies but also consider services such as Bloglovin’ which allows you to expand your audience and increase your reach. Don’t be afraid to share either! We love blog threads in some of our favorite Facebook groups like The Rising Tide Society, For Love + Money with Caitlin Bacher, and Savvy Business Owners. While all are a little different, each group offers threads where you can share your recent blog posts and check out other people’s posts in the group. It’s such a great way to get some extra eyes on your posts and we ALWAYS find amazing blogs from fellow bosses to follow, which we love.
As you continue to build your audience for your blog, you also increase the opportunities for others to share your content or link back to you as an expert. We LOVE when people link back to our blog as a resource on a topic. Not only because of the PR perks, but also it's such an honor when people value your expertise and the content you're creating. The great thing about this strategy is even if it takes a bit for people to start paying attention, you're also creating content for your marketing strategies and also improving your SEO all at once.
Not only does maintaining a blog open up options for people to read and share your content, but with every new post you write you are also building a portfolio of resources and writing samples. This can be a great resource for you to then link back when you pitch publications on your expertise or for guest blogging opportunities (more on that later). Wins all over the place!
Subscribe to HARO
Help a Reporter Out aka HARO is a really awesome service that if you don't already subscribe to you totally should. The service allows media sources to submit requests for a variety of topics. and when I say variety.. I do mean variety! They need resources for stories of every topic under the sun! The service sends 3 emails per day (morning, afternoon and evening) and provides a quick overview of what the media outlet is looking for.
Over the years, Bold & Pop and our co-founders have been featured in a number of stories from leads from HARO -- including the AP, New York Times, and ABC News. So you can definitely see why we’re such big fans of the service. The media outlets receive tons of responses from their inquiries though so while you won't hear back from each request, we have some tips up our sleeves for maximizing your chances to be featured.
- Keep it short and sweet -- Because the media receives so many responses your best bet is to keep your message short and sweet. Start out by introducing yourself and mentioning your credentials and then get down to business with your response. The key is to give them enough information to see if you could be a fit but not too much to overwhelm them, having your message ignored entirely.
- Vary your responses -- When providing your response, consider adding multiple angles. Bulleted lists are key when doing this. It allows the contact to skim through your responses quickly and decide if you can help for their piece. Also, try and think outside-of-the-box a little bit and avoid giving generic advice. By providing something a little different than the 10 other people giving the same advice, your inquiry will stand out a bit.
- Be available for follow-up -- If the media thinks you are a good fit you may receive a follow-up email. Sometimes you will need to provide further information, or depending on the opportunity, they may want to set up a phone or in-person interview. Know that often the media is working on deadline so always try and respond promptly to any further questions. There’s nothing more the media loves than working with resources who are easy to work with. We’ve even had media contacts reach out further down the road for additional features based on our expertise, so make sure you take care of your new media friends! We also suggest making sure you have Google alerts set up, because once in awhile you'll submit an inquiry and they will feature your response as is without sending a confirmation.
Guest Blogging Opportunities
Another great way to expand your reach and provide value to others is by diving into the world of guest blogging. Guest blogging can be a great way to team up with a fellow boss or blogger to share insight to their audience and also get a new set of eyeballs on your content. As with everything, there’s a right and wrong way to go about this process so here are a few of our best tips so that you are successful.
- Do your research -- First things first do your research! Identify blogs that cover topics in your industry and who could benefit from your insight. When you are inquiring about providing content for someone else’s website making sure the content makes sense for the blog and their audience. There's nothing worse than getting a guest blog pitch from someone who clearly has never read your blog and is recommending content that isn't even in your industry. Also pay attention to if the blog has ever featured guest posts before. While it’s not completely impossible to work out a deal with someone who hasn’t done guest blogging before, you will often have better luck with people who regularly offer those opportunities.
- Put some thought into your outreach -- When you reach out, put some thought into your inquiry. While guest blogging may be a part of your press strategy, it should not only be self-serving. Put yourself in the shoes of the blogger when you approach them about contributing. Start out by introducing yourself and letting them know some of their posts that you admire (if you’ve been tuning into their blog for awhile), then offer your suggestions for blog topics you could provide. Similar to HAROs we like to give a number of ideas exclusive for their blog for them to think about. This will save you some back and forth if they are interested and further shows that you have put some consideration into the prospect of contributing..
- Be respectful of the blogger’s time and deadlines -- If you are lucky enough to work out terms with a blogger to guest blog make sure you honor your commitment. Similar to the media, and let’s be honest here all of your professional relationships, it’s important to follow-through with what you agree to do. It's always a yucky situation working with someone who commits to do something and then falls short on their commitment. While you are certainly providing them with content, they are sharing their audience with you so make sure you provide your posts in a timely manner and on-time if you put forth any deadlines.
And there you have it! 3 strategies you can do yourself to step up your PR efforts. Anddd because we're always trying to hook you up, we put together some sample email templates for you to use for HARO or guest blog pitches! 🎉 A little something, something to get your going. Download your free templates by signing up to get access to our content upgrades below!