I had the honor of speaking at Houston’s Career and Education Day this last weekend. I arrived early to listen to the panel on journalism and reporting from key players in the News Media industry in our area. One thing that they reiterated was, “People have to genuinely like you in order to be your resource. If you can remember to be courteous, genuine, and friendly, it will take you places.”
Then it hit me. The same goes for blogging, especially when you’re asking for PR contacts from another blogger. Have you ever experienced this? If so, how do you handle it? Today, I’m bringing you seven reasons I will NOT share my PR contacts with you and other reasons I will.
The word on the street is that 2012 will be a BIG year for influential Mom Bloggers. With the opportunities I’ve already received this year, I can wholeheartedly agree with that statement, however, feel some bloggers want each and EVERY opportunity out there. Let’s face it, there are just too many of us.
I don’t want this post to come across as if I’m not willing to help our blogging community. In fact, it’s the exact opposite of that fact. I love recommending bloggers. I love being a part of growing social media communities. I believe if one of us moves forward, we all do … to a certain extent. I just feel like some bloggers aren’t thinking it straight when they ask another fellow blogger for help. So, here is….
1. I don’t know you: It seems like common sense not to ask someone you don’t know for a big PR contact, but apparently it’s not. Please, for all that is good in this world, do NOT ask a blogger you’ve never talked to, tweeted with, or met in real life for PR contacts. Just don’t do it. If you haven’t taken the time to tweet them, comment on their blog, or give them an inkling of support online, why should they give you support when you ask for it?
2. I DO know you, but you haven’t talked to me in a year (or more): Listen, I love helping others build their content and move forward in the “blogging game,” but if you’ve lost interest in me, chances are I don’t have interest in you. Do you not see how it makes you look? When you DO come to fellow bloggers, you’re not checking to see how things are going, but blatantly asking for a PR contact.
3. You’ve been blogging for a small amount of time: Hey. I know you’re a newbie and I was once as well, however, I had to work really hard to move forward. Build your content, build your stats, and your social media followers before you move forward to build your resource list.
4. You’re busy as hell: Pardon my language, but the bloggers who have 10 ambassadorships, plans for every blogging conference, and 5 press trips planned this month, just isn’t someone I would recommend to a PR contact. You’re busy. You’re probably stressed. So? Why do you want this contact again? So, you can have it all?
5. I’ve worked hard for years: There are only a handful of PR representatives that I can contact for help anytime I have an idea. They’re willing to listen and willing to pull strings if they can. These are the reps I’ve worked with for YEARS. Reps I’ve put an effort to build a relationship with by providing help when they need it (even if I do it for free) all so they can help ME when I need it. It’s a give and take working relationship that I am NOT willing to give away to someone just because they sent me a Twitter DM with a 🙂 at the end.
6. I just announced a big press trip and you want in: Sorry. That’s tacky. Stop. Now. Turn around and pick up what little pride you had and walk straight back to your private blogging forum to complain about how I blew you off. I’m ok with that.
7. It’s not beneficial to my business: A lot of people don’t know this, but I actually organize and create blog tours for clients and brands. That means, they pay me to gather bloggers for their campaigns. If I start giving every blogger my contacts, why would a company need me anymore? It’s a business decision. It’s not personal.
You’ve, probably, read the above and thought Who does she think she is? Can we say blogging diva? I surely hope not. Instead, my hope is that you see it’s beginning to be a HUGE problem in the blogosphere. Speaking from my experience, I feel like you’re putting me in between a rock and a hard place. I want to be helpful and supportive, but have, recently, felt used by some fellow bloggers. Also, the PR reps I DO work with don’t want their information sent to every Mom Blogger in the nation. When I help other bloggers, it’s through a recommendation. I recommend a blogger to them because:
- They’ve inspired me: There are some amazing bloggers out there and, if I feel they can be a HUGE asset to a campaign or program, heck yeah I’ll be recommending them.
- They’re my friend: Yes. I do favors for friends as my friends do the same for me.
- They work hard: I know the bloggers who go over and beyond, not to get every opportunity, but to bring creativity and an authentic voice to the brand they’re working with. Be her. Be THAT blogger.
- They have a passion for that campaign/topic: I had a rep contact me asking me to do a news segment on a certain subject. I LOVE being on TV, but I didn’t feel like I could bring AS much to the piece as another blogger would.
- They build communities: I don’t recommend bloggers who take every opportunity or step on others to GET every opportunity. I recommend bloggers who truly have a passion for the community of bloggers.. someone I know will, in turn, give back when they can.
I’m sorry if this post came out harsh, but the last few weeks I’ve been baffled at how some bloggers feel entitled to ask others for an opportunity they feel they should have. It’s not building our community, it’s tearing it down. How do you feel when others ask you to share your PR contacts?
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