In my presentations I often have several slides in there which are all about using bloggers to get more visibility in search engines. Bloggers already have rankings, already have webpages which are being well indexed by Google and already have authority. Why not use that authority? The big question however is: how can you find them?
One example I gave in my presentation at A4U was about how Universal Film Studios had used only seven influential bloggers to spread their message about the new Harry Potter Theme Park they were launching. Its a good example of how to build up your brand without actually spreading the message yourself.
Another good example I give more often is the one of Sony. When launching a new LCD Television, they looked for the influential bloggers in their industry and used them to spread the word about the new television even before the TV was actually for sale. They didn’t use the press until the television was actually in the stores. They gave the bloggers previews, send them pictures and videos and had them discussing it. That made that when the TV actually was there Sony dominated the search results. Not just with their own site, because they gained a lot of links out of the use of the bloggers, but also through the bloggers-websites. They were the ‘other’ results on the page. And they were all talking about the Sony TV. Some branding that was.
Using bloggers can be very beneficial. Even if you are not the size of Sony or Universal. A simple ‘linkbait’ can bring you the same, if you do it right. But to do it right you need to get a hold of those bloggers. And that is the question I probably get asked the most after my presentations: how do I find those bloggers? Some even think there are no bloggers in their industry. I believe that there are, you just have to look well. Well, here are a few ways of finding the bloggers in your niche. And sometimes they are right under your nose.
Do a Google search
The most simple way of finding bloggers in your industry is doing a Google search. Type in related keywords and see what comes up. You can even specify that search by going to Google blog search. They are actually looking within blogs. Within seconds you will find blogs writing about specific topics.
Check your links
A good way of finding some bloggers is to take a good look at your backlinks. Use tools like MajesticSEO or Linkresearchtools to find out who is linking to you. See which of those are blogs linking to you. These are the best: they already know you, they already link to you, they’re the most easy ones to get in touch with
Check your comments
Do you have a blog of your own? Do people comment there? Check them out. There is a big chance that they actually own a blog themselves. And again, these are bloggers who already know you, who have already connected to you.
Bookmarking sites like Delicious are used by many different kind of people, but one group who uses these sites a lot are… bloggers. They tend to bookmark the stuff they find interesting on the web. Go and look for the interesting bookmarks, see who bookmarked them and you not only have the bloggers bookmarking sites, you will also find the blogs which others are bookmarking.
Though not everybody likes sites like Digg, Reddit or Stumbleupon they are a great source for finding blogs. Bloggers post their content there to get more attention for their posts. Do a search within the sites and you are bound to find some bloggers writing about stuff within your industry
Social Media: Facebook and Twitter
Here we are again: Twitter, Facebook. The two social networks keep popping up in different posts. And yes, again in this one. How do bloggers spread their writings? Through voting sites yes, but even more so through social media. Almost every post out there gets pushed out onto Twitter and / or Facebook. Searching through these networks will get you bloggers writing about the topics you are looking for.
Check the blogroll
Finally, when you have found one, two or more bloggers, be sure to take a thorough look at their blogroll. This is where they tend to place links to their friends and to their fellow-bloggers on the topic. One site can give you up to ten other suggestions to be looking at.
So, go find those bloggers in your niche and start using them. But keep in mind, they are human beings, don’t have all the time in the world and are NOT a free resource, you need to ‘pamper’ them a little… ;- ). Take a look at the suggestions I gave you for linkbuilding. When addressing bloggers its good to keep those in mind too.