At MAKEACHAMP, we hear this question a lot. Getting an article written about your sports career or crowdfunding campaign is the best way to reach out to a wider audience who will contribute to your goal. Bloggers have a *BIG* influence and reach in this age of the Internet. They hold their audiences with brilliant words and stunning pictures, and their opinion or advice can make or break careers. If you have thought about using bloggers or journalists to help increase the reach of your MAKEACHAMP crowdfunding campaign, you have been thinking right. The problem is getting the attention of bloggers and getting them to actually write about your campaign.
A short blog post and a picture will get you $1200 in 48 hours. A community blog post will kickstart your first contributions. A news piece will get you thousands of dollars and attract other bloggers. A post in a relatively small newspaper will get your campaign from a stagnating 20% to a winning campaign.
Most bloggers or journalists are busy. Their time is NOT cheap. They are on the Internet practically 14 hours a day, on their laptop at the office, or perusing articles on their phone while doing groceries. However, they are always working. They sometimes volunteer to causes or sympathize on stories, but at their leisure. They have no obligations towards any specific athlete. You would not believe the amount of emails bloggers get along the lines of: "Please write about this, watch my video, check out my medals"... and most of these requests are asking for these services for FREE! How can you make YOUR request stand out AND get published?
First, take some time to research some bloggers that already write about the niche in which your campaign is aligned. For instance, if you've started a crowdfunding campaign to raise money for your son's basketball team championship tournament, you probably would not want to reach out to bloggers who only write about food. You would however, be searching for blogs in the same city that write about families, and sports blogs which have written about basketball recently.
How do you find the best blogs? The best are probably already in your Facebook newsfeed. They cover your favorite championships. They post about good sports equipment. They report community stories. Another way is just to ask around from fellow athletes. Do they know bloggers or journalists? What do they read? Share your story with your coach and athletes on your team, and ask if they know of good online publications in your sport.
For a Slovenian judoka who wants to get back to the mat, the best is to find blogs in Slovenia who write about martial arts. The key here is relevancy. It's easier for a Slovenian blogger to relate to your story than talking to a London-based blogger who has never heard about judo in Slovenia. This would be the same for BJJ grapplers in the Philippines who need to talk to journalists and bloggers in their country or city.
Now about reaching out. What does that mean? It means start reading what they are writing! Make sure you like what they write. Follow them on all the social media that they promote. Retweet them, leave comments, interact, pin them, make sure you stand out. All these things will get YOU noticed.
Should you only go after BIG bloggers? You can... but don't overlook the small niche blogs. Some smaller blogs actually have a better relationship with their audience because they are small.
After you reach out to bloggers, sending emails will probably get you no where. That does not mean you cannot email bloggers.. buit if you don't already have a relationship with them AND you are asking them to promote you for FREE... it will most likely not happen. It only happens if you are a world champion, or you have an incredible story that will boost what they are doing and give them a good image.
What you need to do, is add value to their site. How can you add value? Write a blog post for them about a specific element in your sport (something the larger community would appreciate), such as giving expert advice about nutrition, training, etc. You can also write about a theme that the blogger tends to follow and tie your campaign in somehow. Essentially, it's about asking what you are providing them.
Now, here is a good video that outlines the process. Granted, it is not specifically about sports, however what they say about "video" can be translated directly into sports:
"Copy paste emails are not cool". Definitively right. "Customized emails". Anything else? Make it short and to point
Think about all those things before you reach out to bloggers. And make sure to bookmark our site to read advice and news about sports crowdfunding!
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