Press release guidelines for getting bloggers to respond to your PR emails
At Mequoda, not only do we get press releases sent to us on a regular basis, but we also mingle with some of the blogging elite that receive sometimes hundreds of PR submissions every week. The first thing to realize when you’re sending your press release to a blogger is that you’re only one of many people who are trying to get a “shout out”. Unless you’re personally connected to the blogger at hand, it will take a little elbow grease to get seen.
Rule #1: Don’t send a press release.
That’s right, the first rule of sending press releases is NOT to send one.
When you send a generic press release, the blogger thinks, “I am just one of many bloggers that this is being sent to. Someone else will take care of it. And by the way, don’t they care enough to send me a more personal email? Do they even read my blog?”
A personal, introductory email can often go a long way. Compliment them on their blog and pull out articles that you especially admire. Flattery will get you the first part of the way.
However, some bloggers prefer you give them everything all at once.
To bridge this gap. make sure to organize your email. Introduction, flowery applause, then a list of the calls to action, which we’ll get into now.
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Rule #2: Give them something interesting to share.
Prepare the blogger with any multimedia elements that you have.
- Do you have a great promotional video? Give them the link to the video along with the embed code from YouTube or whatever video service you have. Multimedia elements, quotes and copy will make the bloggers life easier and more likely to promote you.
- Will you send them a free copy? Let them know that if you’d like a review or an announcement, you’ll be sure to send them a copy. Ask for their mailing address and keep it simple. If you’d like the blogger to review something like an iPhone app, make sure to give them the promo code so that they can download it for free.
- Is there a promotional code they can use? Bloggers like giving away deals to their subscribers, especially when they are deal exclusive to that blogger. If you’re selling an event relevant to the niche the blogger is in, try giving them two free passes to raffle away. The blog posts for the contest will include links to your event and will heighten awareness. If you’re not daring to be so bold, then offer them a discount code for all of their blog readers that they can promote.
- Do you have an affiliate program? If you can offer the blogger some commission on the product or service you’re asking them to promote, they’re more likely to help you out, especially if it’s a considerable commission.
Rule #3: Stay within your context.
Don’t waste time trying to hook bloggers that aren’t in your niche. If you’re content isn’t completely relevant to the readers that they’re writing to, then you’re wasting your time. Instead of going for quantity, try targeting the big fish that you can land and that you can continue to build a mutually beneficial relationship with.