Blogger events have definitely become one of the latest big things in digital, and that might be a bit of a head-scratcher to some parts of the SEO world. After all, if you factor in the cost of the venue, the drinks and canapés, the giftbags, the creative effort, the sheer amount of time needed to send invites and possibly travel costs, then we’re talking a pretty decent investment of time and money in exchange for an unknown return in terms of online coverage, comments, benefit to clients and positive engagement. So why is the digital world pouring so much time and effort into blogger events?
Simply put: as the nature of the internet evolves and the long-term campaign goals of clients change, it is worth thinking beyond the old skool SEO focus of guaranteed linkbacks.
First of all, it has to be underlined and then underlined again that bloggers are an extremely important part of the internet landscape. They’re out there setting trends, driving tastes and keeping the rest of the internet informed. Therefore, it is equally important to respect them as individuals and to tailor a client’s offerings to their needs as writers. A blog is an extension of a personal brand, and bloggers are very aware of this when they look for topics to discuss.
The importance of bloggers inevitably leads to the need to get involved with the community to find out what they like and want. While traditional SEO approaches have tended to put an emphasis on the links side of the equation, investment in relationships has been pinpointed by a number of top-flight international companies as a key part of their campaign goals. After all, if a company is looking to forge links with interested bloggers, there’s no better way than inviting them to experience the brand first-hand. And when the right company joins forces with a passionate blogger who really loves the brand, the results of this “brand ambassadorship” have been shown to be beneficial for everyone involved.
Also, it is definitely worth taking into consideration that blogger events have the chance to generate more than just posts. Twitter for one can build up an amazing amount of buzz around a given event if the bloggers get the chance to tweet throughout it. Instagram too shows others just what’s going on and catches community interest. Overall, the social aspect of blogger events has the potential to build a real sense of excitement, which a number of companies have been exploring.
So why are blogger events catching on with the digital world? It’s good for bloggers and other consumers, it’s good for brands and agencies, it’s even good for success with Google as the high quality social noise that an event makes supports Google’s socially focused mentality. I am not going to deny it, not every campaign can support an event. In fact, for companies just beginning their voyage into building blogger relationships, it’s definitely worth thinking long and hard on how an event will appeal to the community at large. A badly conceived campaign will provide little if any benefit to a brand’s image on top of not really benefiting the all-important ROI, but with the right campaign, the right brand and the right team, a blogger event can be just the ticket for kicking off a new product or service in a show stopping way.