Not sure how to get top blogging influencers to share your content? This post is definitely for you!
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GOAL: In this week’s article, I’ll be walking you through various steps to get top influencers in your blogging niche to tweet your blog posts.
I wouldn’t want to bug you with long stories today but here’s how I started getting top influencers like Rebekah Radice, Mark Schaefer, Sam Hurley, Mary Fern, Adam Connell, Katherine Sullivan, Keith Keller, Samantha Kelly, Madalyn Sklar, Evan Carmichael, Donna Moritz, Janice Wald, Lilach Bullock, Aaron Orendorff and many others to tweet my content.
About a year ago, I was getting ready to launch my blog and I came across Sun Dunlevie’s webinar on how to start a blog and make your first $1,000. I signed up for it and showed up promptly.
How the webinar went?
It was full of great ideas but I was only attracted to just one; publishing expert roundups.
I dug in a little bit, did my research and a few months later, I published this round up post on my blog (this blog) which was my first ever blog post.
It turned out pretty well, generated over 1,000 social shares in its first week and about 100 email subscribers just from that one post.
All thanks to Sue for making this happen!
In this post I’m going to kind of replicate what I did but in writing. I’ll be walking you through each step I took that led to this massive result and also getting influencers to tweet my blog posts.
Here’s the thing;
Some of these influencers I mentioned above still share my content so it’s not about getting them to participate in my roundups but building relationships with them that turned into continues shares, favors, mentions, links …
How to Get Top Blogging Influencers to Share Your Content – Step by Step
To make this post easier digestible for you, I’ll break it down into 5 simple steps:
Step 1: Picking a blogging niche (I’m guessing you already have a blog and a niche so I wouldn’t talk much on that and maybe link to a few articles (that I’ve read) to learn more about picking the best blogging niche.
Step 2: How to find influencers that will most likely accept your round up request. I show you how I used Google search and a few apps/tools to find influencers that will most likely agree to participate in any round up.
Mind you: not all influencers are interested in roundups so this step will help you stay away from them.
Step 3: How to start building relationships with these influencers so your requests don’t get declined. I made a lot of mistakes while doing this and I’ll be revealing those to you. Just stay put!
Step 4: Reaching out. I’ll talk about what I learnt from sending over 200 reach out emails (manually). (This isn’t my line of expertise so I’ll probably link to a few great resources).
Step 5: Post-Round up. I’ll show you exactly what to do so influencers keep sharing your future blog posts easily; I show you how I do it.
Step 1: Picking a Blogging Niche
Like I said earlier, I won’t be talking much on this because that’s not the goal of this article but I figured it’s a necessary step you shouldn’t miss out.
Picking a profitable blogging niche can be more challenging than you’ve ever imagined. Since I started this blog, I’ve changed (or tried to change) my blog’s niche more times than I can possibly count.
If I’m left to advise you, this is what I’ll say…
Picking the perfect blogging niche depends on your voice and to find that voice you just need to start.
Market research is only part of the equation. Doing your thing and figuring out what works for you and your market is what matters.
Pick up your writing materials and start writing. The more you write, the closer you get to your true blogging voice.
As I’ve promised, here are 3 articles that’ll help. I’ve personally gone through these articles before linking to them here and I believe you’ll find value from reading them:
How To Find a Blogging Niche – The Beginner’s Guide – I particularly love how Rob points out and discusses the importance of picking a blog niche.
How to Find Your Voice – and own it – I extremely love how Derek talks about how to find your true blogging voice with real life stories/experiences.
Finding the Right Niche for Your Blog (Plus 21 Blog Niche Ideas)– Sonia didn’t only break down actionable steps to find your blogging niche but also lists 21 niche ideas. This can help you get some rough ideas to begin with.
Step 2: How to Find Influencers that’ll Most Likely Participate in Your Round Up.
When I started my little quest of finding influencers that’ll be interested in not only participating in my round up but also connecting with me.
I didn’t do any research or plan out a strategy to finding the perfect influencers for these. What I did was I used buzzsumo, to pull off every influencer that had certain keywords or had certain number of following/influence.
That was such a big mistake!
You’ll end up getting connected with influencers who wouldn’t care about what you have to offer. You might even piss them off with annoying emails and follow ups. Worst of all, you’ll waste a whole lot of time doing these reach outs.
How do you find exactly who to build relationships with?
Well, I have 1 simple way I’ll advise you to go about this step;
“Finding Influencers who have already participated in similar round ups”
Finding Influencers that have participated in similar roundup posts is the best way to pull off influencers that will most likely say YES to your requests.
Because they have shown similar interest. Here are 2 quick ways to finding influencers that have participated in similar roundups already;
- Use Google and run “[your niche] + experts reveal their best secrets“. So for example if I’m to find travel experts to build relationships with, I’ll run “travel experts reveal their best secrets”.
- Go through this resource guide (link below). In this guide, Nirav Dave put together a huge list of 300+ expert roundups in different niches. Think social media marketing roundups, SEO, Marketing, Affiliate, Blogging and many more. Here’s the link (bookmark it then visit it once you’re done reading this):
Now carefully go through some of these roundups (in your niche) and keep a list of experts that have participated; I use Excel for keeping all things LISTS.
Quick Point: What I personally do is I also look at their bio to make sure they are ones I really want to connect with.
Step 3: How to Start Building Relationships with these Influencers so Your Requests Don’t Get Declined.
When I was starting to build relationships with influencers, I had one problem which most new bloggers face too….
Laziness! Laziness!! Laziness!!!
I knew all the goodies that will come if I could just take a bold step, spare out time to start engaging with these influencers but LAZINESS was in the way.
Yes, I know…
You don’t have the time to drop comments on their blogs, join their email lists and wait a few days then reply their emails (as experts have told us to).
You also don’t have time to turn on their posts notification, wait for them to publish new posts so you would like share and comment… and the list goes on. I wasn’t on Pinterest or even Facebook!
Don’t worry, I have a secret app that’ll help you here. It’s called, Twitter! Read on I’ll explain…
Twitter was the main app I used while building relationships with over 100 influencers in my niche and I’ll be showing you actionable steps I took.
The 2 main things I was doing were;
Thing #1: I was tweeting out their content, letting them know how it helped me OR what was missing.
Thing #2: I was quoting their expert words.
Note: I will probably publish a post specifically on how I built relationships with these influencers on twitter here on this blog. Be sure to subscribe to my newsletter so you don’t miss out!
Thing #1: I was tweeting out their content, letting them know how it helped me.
If there’s one thing that got influencers to start engaging with me then it’s from tweeting their content.
To be able to get them to do you a favor, you must start out by doing them a favor first. To get them to participate in your round up, you need to first do them some favors.
I didn’t hesitate here because “what would it take if I tweeted their articles?”
Absolutely NOTHING! Here’s what you need to start doing right away;
Visit their blogs or YouTube channels and share content that you’ve read and love. (Notice that I highlight a part here).
Don’t just tweet their content; say something. Edit and customize the tweet; without this, my tweets wouldn’t have been noticed by these influencers. What I did was I continually added my comments in each tweet I publish.
Never just hit the tweet button and publish. That’s too regular for you and I in 2018; we need a better approach.
Visit their blogs and go to the blog post you want to share. Let’s use Rebekah Radice’s social media blog for this (I’ll use her most recent blog post);
Now, after hitting the tweet share button on this post, this is what you get;
“The Most Important Elements in Your Social Media Budget https://rebekahradice.com/the-most-important-elements-in-your-social-media-budget/ via @rebekahradice”
That’s too regular to tweet because it won’t grab Rebekah’s attention AND it won’t grab her attention AND it just won’t grab her attention because it’s simply no different from the hundreds of tweet-shares she gets.
The secret here is to comment on the post. This will not only stand out but will prompt Rebekah to say thank you (the goal). For instance;
“I completely agree with the elements highlighted here but graphics is probably the most important in my opinion. S/Media is now all abt images & videos.
Create graphics that tie to your brand voice and resonates with your audience.
https://rebekahradice.com/the-most-important-elements-in-your-social-media-budget/ via @rebekahradice”
If YOU make this your habit then you’ll start noticing more influencers replying to your tweets.
Thing #2: Tweeting out their content wasn’t enough. I wanted to let them know I see them as experts in what they do. How’d I do that?
I was quoting their words!
I found their articles and tweeted a line or two that I resonated with, believed the most or loved. Most times, you’ll get click to tweet quotes on their blogs so you could easily tweet out their quotes.
Brian Dean of Backlinko uses click to tweets (CTT) a lot in his content thus if you’re in the SEO space then you should start by tweeting out Brian’s words.
To make this even easier for me, I used buffer (but you can use any of the social media tools I’ve mentioned here on this page) to schedule these tweets so you don’t have to spend much time finding and tweeting.
Find 1 or 2 quotes for each experts and schedule them to be tweeted on your page. Like I said I used buffer which is free and simple but you can also check out other social media scheduling tools I’ve personally tested on this page.
Step 4: Reaching Out. What I Learnt from Sending Over 200 Emails Manually.
If there’s one thing I would correct if I could go back in time, it’s manually sending emails to over 200 influencers. MANUALLY!
If you’ve done reach outs before then you know it takes a loooot of time, energy and dedication. You need to find their email addresses, carve out the best reachout email content, subject lines, follow ups and the list goooeessss….
That’s a toon of stress and I went through it.
My advice is this;
Don’t be afraid to invest a little in reachout tools, services, freelancers or a Virtual Assistant to get this done!
But before jumping into finding freelancers for your reach outs, here are a few things I learnt sending that much emails manually.
Lesson #1: Majority of the experts you’ll email will not reply; few will reply aggressively.
If you’re thinking, this is gonna be a smooth ride then just stop it, right now!
It’s going to take your time no matter what you do, you’re going to get harsh replies from influencers. Replies that can make you want to GIVE UP!
In fact in my case, I can remember throwing my laptop on the floor because I was depressed and felt this was never going to work…
Yes, it was that hard! I got a few emails from influencers saying I was disturbing them. Some were harsh replies from their V.A’s, email managers etc.
Experts are super (2x super) busy. Some are even frustrated or passing through difficult times.
And if you’re not lucky, that’s when your poor email will land in their inbox ;(
From the few aggressive replies I got during this campaign, I could sense that my emails landed at the wrong time.
What do you do?
A good way to get over this is to see every harsh email as if it was a positive one then reply them back letting them know you’re super happy they replied back.
Another thing is majority wouldn’t reply back. In my campaign, I emailed over 200 influencers but got 62 of them to participate.
That’s a 30-31% conversion rate which is not bad though.
Lesson #2: 3-way email template worked best in my campaign
What are 3-way email templates? Well, here’s the normal, usual way most bloggers do their reach outs.
- You send the first reach out email asking if you could send the round up question – email #1
- They agree you send over the question for the round up – email #2.
- You send the round up details and question – email #3.
- They reply with their answers – email #4;
You thank them – email #5.
But here’s the strategy I later started using during my campaign. Just this tweak rose my conversions (replies and particpations) high.
- You send the first reach out email with roundup details (+ how to participate)– email #1.
- They reply with their answer and bio details – email #2;
- You thank them and let them know you’ll email when it’s live – email #3.
Experts hate to & fro emails simply because they deal with a lot. Get straight to the point, ASK for the roundup and move to the next influencer.
Lesson #3: Work with one template if not you’ll get extremely exhausted.
For those of you who might still want to reachout manually then do not fall into the trap of not having a template to work with.
This caused me a toon of time and energy. I would find myself constantly writing new emails for literally every influencer.
What you’d want to do is to use 5 to 10 minutes to carve out a great template that’ll work for nearly all influencers in your list. Make a few edits to match each influencer before sending.
Step 5: Post-Round up
You’d be wasting a lot of shares, blog traffic and leads if you don’t keep the relationships you’ve started building. There are different ways you could go about this but I’ll sharing with you 2 of my favorites.
#1 Simply do more round ups!
Till date I’ve only published just 2 round up posts on this blog but I’ll be publishing a few more soon.
Why I love roundups is because you get to pay-back influencers with backlinks, mentions and many more. Most would be glad to always put something down for your new round up.
Hit them up and ask if they would be interested in participating in future round ups. In fact in my case what I notice is that some influencers will even let you know that they’ll be available for future round ups.
One thing to know is that first round ups are always the toughest. You’ve built relationships with influencers so future roundups wouldn’t bite.
#2 Mention/Link to them in your blog posts.
Continually mention and link to influencers that have participated in your round up and let them know you did.
If you’ve been following this blog, you’ll notice that there are some influential names that keep popping up in my articles. No, it’s not by mistake!
They’re influencers that have done favors for me and the best and easiest way to pay back is by mentioning and linking to them. I don’t just mention them but cite their works as experts.
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