Why Your Small Blog Has Power in Sponsorships

Thursday, November 06, 2014

When just starting out, your blog will just have a few dozen readers. However, this does not mean your blog is too small to work with brands as one might expect.

There is a great power within small blogs for brand opportunity. Yes, some brands choose to only work with those with audiences in the thousands. Although it may seem like they are gaining a huge impact from the massive amount of readers, in most campaigns only a small percentage convert to a sale or the desired form of action.

As a small blogger with only a dozen to a few hundred readers, you can have a higher conversion rate due to the intimacy and trust within your audience. The small amount of readers you have are not following you due to the bandwagon effect, big brand affiliation, or massive giveaways. They are reading your content because they are interested in what you have to say. Smaller audiences are considered more loyal and more likely to trust your opinion.

Let's take #AlexFromTarget as an example. Prior to his social media fame, Alex only had about 144 followers on Twitter. This is a pretty average amount of followers for a social teenager. However, as of right now, he has over 663,000 followers. If a brand wanted Alex to promote their product, the 600k+ is definitely nothing to ignore. It would probably be worth the investment to advertise with him due to his current national attention. But when the #AlexFromTarget noise dies down, his followers won't be as interested. Unless it's a cute new photo of the cashier, most fangirls won't care. Afterall, that's why he became a instant celebrity in the first place.

In the end, it can be expected that his original 144 followers are the main group who still care about his opinion and have any loyalty to Alex. Okay maybe some of those other 663,000 followers will care a little bit, but it is unlikely that they will put very much value into the content that Alex posts. The more sincere and powerful response will always come from a more loyal and more intimate audience.

Although the majority of brands and sponsorship networks require X amount of readers or followers, more and more large brands are understanding the value of smaller reach content creators. For example, McDonalds USA understand the need for big bloggers, small bloggers, and non-bloggers in their campaigns. Through their online community network, Family Arches, McDonalds is able to easily communicate and build relationships with content creators.

Rather than just connecting one time for a single sponsored post, McDonalds values continuous relationships with their content creators. This allows them to reduce the risk of reaching out to writers who are not aligned with the brand's values, have irregular or inconsistent content,  or do not have the desired voice for the company. Notice that audience size is not a concern. By creating these relationships, the writer can expect a more customized experience while the brand can reduce risk and focus on campaign quality rather than the audience reach.

This does not mean that large bloggers are not valuable. Having a large audience reach is important to brands. However, small blogs offer a higher conversion rate to brand campaigns due to reader loyalty and intimacy.

Want other marketing or business tips?
This post was made possible by Click Z Live Chicago. Without attending this conference, I would have not learned about the power of a small blog or McDonalds efforts to reach out to content creators. 

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