The Bloggers of Collective Bias

MaryEllen Tribby says blogging is dead, but these bloggers boosted sales at K-Mart this spring by 51% over last year. Don’t seem dead to me…

There were 4 bloggers from Collective Bias at the Shopper Marketing Expo last week when I stopped by. And I got to meet a fifth blogger from Chicagonista.com at a social event that evening. We cover what they do, and how it fits in with Collective Bias on the show – www.SocialMediaCheapAndEasy.com – but I want to give you some more detail about the bloggers, what they do, and how to find them.

Let’s start with who they are and where they write.

Liz and Douglas are a husband and wife team. (Last names left out as a courtesy. Visit their blogs to find out more.) They blog full time and maintain 3 blogs plus 6 e-zines. They have a combined audience of about 10,000.

Liz and Douglas maintain

Vanessa is a Chicago mom who blogs part-time, and contributes to the Chicago Trib Local website. That gives her audience a boost to around 30,000.

You can find Vanessa at www.MoreIsMoreMom.com

Kris is also a Chicago mom – of twins and twins. Yep, four children under 10. Yikes! And she still finds time to maintain a blog full-time with an audience of 20,000.

Kris writes about all things tech at www.LittleTechGirl.com

The lady I met from www.Chicagonista.com is Dwana De La Cerna. There was a social gathering after the Expo Wednesday, and she was able to attend.

Now for what they do – and how you can use it for your own business…

Each blog existed and had an audience before Collective Bias ever invited them to be part of the Social Fabric community. Having that audience is part of why they were invited in the first place. Odds are that there are lots of popular bloggers close to you and your business. I’ll tell you how to find them before we’re done.

You’ve probably heard that lots of companies send product samples to bloggers in the hope that they will try the product, like it, then write about it on their blog. What you may not have heard is that most bloggers never get around to opening the packages. Often, they’re just tossed into the garbage as junk mail.

The bloggers tell me that when they do get around to opening a package, it’s a crap shoot as to whether the product inside will even be relevant to them.

Sounds a lot like “throw mud against the wall and see what sticks,” doesn’t it?

What happens with Collective Bias is quite a bit different. The team at Collective Bias take the time to match opportunities with relevant bloggers. It’s super easy to do…You just ask the bloggers if they’re interested! Too simple, right? 🙂

The bloggers then participate in a shopping experience and write about it for their audience. Again, very simple. Let me give you an example from the Spring of this year.

K-Mart and Collective Bias teamed up for a promotion related to patio furnishings. The bloggers that wanted to participate came up with the idea of getting their audience to help pick furnishings to renovate their patios and/or decks.

As the re-decorating continued, the bloggers shared prices for the furnishings and what it was like to buy them – but didn’t share where the purchases were made. At the end, they asked their audience to guess where everything had been purchased.

Well, you can guess everyone’s surprise when they discovered all the cool stuff they could buy at K-Mart, and at low prices, too. But the really cool part is that the campaign increased sales by 51% from 2010.
Are you getting the idea that connecting with already popular bloggers to promote your business can be productive and profitable?

Hear more about how it works at www.SocialMediaCheapAndEasy.com

And be sure to visit their blogs to see how these bloggers get the job done.

Last thing: How to find popular bloggers in your industry…

First step – go to Google and do a search for whatever it is that you do. Surf through some of the sites and see which are blogs. That should take about 15 minutes.

Go back to Google and do a search that looks like this:<your industry> site:ning.com

So you might put “accounting site:ning.com” into the search box. This will search the Ning.com site for everything related to accounting. (By the way, you can use this method to search any site for any search term.)

And a third approach is to type in: blogs on <your industry>.

Keep in mind that the location of the blogger is irrelevant. People who read Time, Cosmopolitan and Life probably don’t all live in the same town as the people who write the articles, right? What counts is that the blogger is writing on a topic that’s relevant to your audience.

Be sure to leave a comment to share what you found, and especially what new relationships you’re developing as a result. And thanks for reading.

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