Sure, your client wants The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and USA Today. Penetrating these publications means huge exposure for the company and a great coup for a PR pro. But sometimes an effective niche blogger campaign can be just as valuable. With a hyper-targeted focus, niche placements can drive sales and build awareness about a specific service or product.
Is your client a dopp kit retailer, for instance? Believe it or not, there’s a blog for that! There seems to be a blog for every topic imaginable nowadays, which makes niche outreach particularly useful.
With this in mind, here are three tips for PR pros looking to leverage niche blogs to build rewarding outreach programs for their clients:
One of the most difficult aspects of niche outreach is discovery—i.e., who are the targets. While a blog about dopp kits exists, finding it can be tough. That’s why using services like Alltop, SimilarSites, and Technorati can be helpful. They help you organize your search to limit endless and incessant Googling. Additionally, while often viewed as a relic in PR, blogrolls — a list of recommended blogs that a blogger includes in a sidebar — are especially useful for niche campaigns. Bloggers who post blogrolls are hyper-aware of other influential writers in their community, making those lists a PR treasure trove.
When focusing on a particular niche community, advance preparation and research is a must. To effectively reach these groups, you must know how they work and what they find interesting. Given their hyper-targeted focus, don’t dive in without inside knowledge of their space. To do so generally leads to a missed opportunity and an unsuccessful campaign. Knowing the niche group you’re pitching is half the battle.
I’m Not Niche
When pitching a niche blogger – or any blogger, for that matter – remember, just because they’re not with The New York Times doesn’t mean that you should treat them differently. Don’t ever act as if they’re a “niche blogger.” Be attentive and honor commitments. This is key to any effective program. A targeted blog’s general reach maybe smaller, but influence today is measured in a number of ways and every blog can have an impact.
These are three ways to encourage success. What are some others?