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Preparing For A Blogger’s Interview

Taggo is currently one of my clients and I am lucky to have the spokesperson, Aneace Haddad, to be open about being interviewed by traditional media and also the by bloggers.

I have managed to schedule a few blogs interviews with Aneace and I have been able to execute using experiences from my media, PR and social media out-reach to help the blogger and the client with the interview.

For a successful blogger pitch, you need to think of the following

1. Read the blog and understand what they blog about

This isn’t rocket science but I had of many stories from bloggers that PR folks fail to read their blog and mass email them.

The mass email isn’t a good thing because it shows that the PR is randomly trying to spread the message in hope that one of out of the 1,000 BCCed email send out turns into a successful interview and placement.

That’s a success rate of 0.01%.

But why don’t make it 100% by identifying the right blogs for your pitches?

For Taggo case, we have identified three start-up blogs and the pitch to them is about Aneace’s experiences about entrepreneurship.

One of the these blogs focused truely on entrepreneurship and our pitch was about the topic that the blog wrote about.

The other blog focuses on web startups and is the perfect blog to target as Taggo is being position as a Web 2.5 – platform as a service – startup and you don’t hear much Web 2.5 start up these days.

2. Provide the blogger with as much non-textual content as possible

The amount of words and photos you can put in print is confined to the size of the page, or also known as the estate space. Usually an A4 size page contains about 800 words and if you looking to put a photo, it reduces the number of words.

Then came the Internet and in the Web1.0 days, the ezines creators were talking about about the unlimited estate space that you could play with online. Of course, print publishers were quick to denounce it by arguing that nobody would want to scroll down a bottomless webpage.

The problem then with Web1.0 was that photos and videos requires the web master to consider bandwidth and storage space.

But in Web2.0, the blogger could sign up for a free hosting photo or video site and just use the bandwidth from that site. Think YouTube and Flickr.

Still, I still hear bloggers highlight that one of the biggest problems of attending an event is that the event organiser expect the blogger to be a writer, photographer and videocamera person. An all in one.

But if PR is to facilitate the media or the blogger, shouldn’t they be helping with the photos, audio and visual aspect of the content creation to help these content creators?

As such, for one of the successful bloggers interviews, I have created a photo pack that the blogger can use  for the interview blog post. I have also provided descriptions to the photos which the blogger can used in the interview post.

I might even suggest to the client that for the next quarterly meeting with his partners that we do a quick 2 min video for him to talk about Taggo.

This is also important for Bloggers Events. Most of the time, I recommend that I help with the photo taking and I eventually post the photo on a album in Facebook which the invited bloggers can use for their blog post.

All the bloggers need to do is cut and past the image link.

This is good for the bloggers because if they are consistently taking photos, it means they will be behind the camera and only a few photos might show them being there.

So why not extend an helping hand to the blogger and help her/him take the photo instead?

3. Keywords rather than key messages

In the traditional PR world, the spokesperson is usually trained to add in key messages in their interviews, be it for print, audio or video.

Key messages are great for this medium because the medium is delivered to the audience.

For blogs or Web, the medium is being searched for rather than being delivered and it is keywords that determine what appears on the search engine.

For bloggers’ interviews, my prep to Aneace was to think of the keywords that he would like to see appear in search results.

This is important is because you want to also targeted searches to reach the blog when the keyword is entered into a search engine.

Keywords have to be unique so that it lands onto the blog.

This is also beneficial to the blogger because he/she might get new set of audience as a result of these keyword searches.

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