Tag Archives: Bloggers

Dear Blogger…

18 Dec
Dear blogger...
Dear blogger…

“I’m getting more email pitches that start out with “Dear Blogger

Dear Blogger tells people that you don’t care enough about them to read their blog and learn their name.”

This is the opening of an article we have just read that shows what more bloggers are experiencing. A generic outreach from brands and agencies to bloggers, who can’t even be bothered to put in their name.

Would you do that to a journalist on The Times? No? Well a blogger is just as important. Want to know why? Because if you want anyone to write about you, then you have to target that person personally and NEVER generically.

Bloggers are much more than just their blog. They operate through several channels and you can never just assume that because you’re wanting them to mention your brand on the blog, that this is the only way you can talk to them. Bloggers are brands in themselves, they understand marketing on a new level and this is why you have to get it right, you cannot risk generic pitches.

Bloggers, have you ever been approached like this? What do you have to say to brands/agencies who approach you like this?

Original article from here.

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Blogger collaborations – all the rage

24 Nov

It seems more and more brands are jumping on the bandwagon of blogger collaborations. There have been quite a few that have impressed us recently.

While it is very much ‘du jour’ at the moment, here at Teacup – we really hope that brands learn to think outside of the box a little and don’t follow in the steps of every other brand.

Saying that, here are some of our favourites:

Emily Johnson’s bag project with Coach:

Emily from Fashion Foie Gras with her Coach bag

Emily from Fashion Foie Gras with her Coach bag

Emily worked with luxury brand coach to produce a gorgeous bag, which had everything from a removable iPad2 case, to a shoe compartment and more. The brand also held an amazing launch party for this, this week – which saw some of the top names in fashion attend.

FarFetch‘s shoe design project, SixBy6 Bloggers:

The shoes designed by the Cherry-Blossom-Girl

The shoes designed by the Cherry-Blossom-Girl

Created by SIXLondon, the brand really went all out in choosing the bloggers they wanted to work with: Susie BubbleStyle Salvage,FacehunterCaroline’s ModeThe Man Repeller and The Cherry Blossom Girl.

Our favourites were the shoes by The Cherry Blossom Girl – so chic.

What do you think about blogger collaborations? Are they too hyped up now?

New legal guidelines on working with brands

14 Nov

It’s often a muddy area on just how brands can work with bloggers, or people using social media channels in a transparent way. So many people break the law without even realising it! This is where these guidelines will help you. They’ve been put together by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) and the Committee for Advertising Practice (CAP) Secretariat.

There are six scenarios to help you out, which you can relate to and then put into practise with your social media activity.

These are:

1. Video Placement
2. Blogs
3. Video Blogs
4. Twitter
5. Forums
6. Facebook

The document aims to help brand owners and marketing practitioners comply with consumer protection law.

You can download a  PDF version of the guidelines and  the Q&A from the IAB’s site and they’re shown in full below

A brand’s guide to working with bloggers:

19 Oct

Here at Teacup, we wish for bloggers and brands to forge relationships that are strategic, honest and effective.

Brands working with blogs

Brands working with blogs

There are so many brands and agencies out there who know they should be working with bloggers. After all, there are  many whisperings on how successful this can be for competitors, and how they too should be doing it. So they put a lot of pressure on the agency/ PR to start reaching out.

The problem? A lot of brands and agencies still don’t know how to work with bloggers. Here are some tips:

1) Don’t send out a mass email. No one is going to thank you for it. It’s impersonal and if not relevant, then it shows you’re not reading the blogs you’re trying to target.
2) When emailing, don’t get the name of the blogger wrong, or write ‘Dear Fashion Blogger’. How is anybody going to respond positively to that?
3) When working with a blogger on a sponsored post, don’t try and remove the ‘sponsored post’ from the blog. It has to be there legally. It’s the same as with magazines, the reader has to know when it’s an advertorial!
4) Don’t assume all bloggers will write for free. You’re getting that blogger’s time, readers (that they have personally built up) and reputation, aswell as content. That is worth paying for. If it’s not, then why are you talking to the blogger in the first place?
5) Remember bloggers are also marketeers, with rates for advertising. Write to them and see if you can work work with them on a commercial level.

6) Don’t send irrelevant content to a blogger. Why would a fashion blogger want to write about duck liver pate? Make sure you know you’re sending the right information, otherwise you will look unprofessional! And the chances are the blogger will tell their wide community of other bloggers.

7) Build a relationship with the blogger and make it personal (but professional!). You’re guaranteed to have more luck working with the blogger community, if you’re a part of it. Get involved in conversations, become part of their world. Then you might have a chance of understanding it.

Do you have any other tips you can add to this? Let us know in the comment box.

If you need help with your blogger outreach, we have a huge blogger database across fashion and beauty and as bloggers ourselves, we get it, so get in touch at hello@theteacupagency.com

What do you think of bloggers having agents?

29 Sep

 

BryanBoy by Moises Quesada

BryanBoy by Moises Quesada

As brands make more and more demands from bloggers, there are some who have no idea how to handle the touchy subject of money. If a brand can get something for free, they will normally try to.

There’s still not a lot of understanding from brands, that bloggers are more than people who want freebies. Bloggers work hard for their content, sometimes posting up to three times a day, taking photographs and sourcing their own stories. Bloggers are writers, community builders and marketers and brands need to treat them as such.

The next stage in this development is that some bloggers are hiring agents to deal with the brands on the commercial side of things, so they are left to handle the creative.

Lindsay Calla, the 27-year-old behind the fashion blog Saucy Glossie works with Digital Brand Architects, a new agency in New York that represents fashion and lifestyle bloggers, brokering endorsement deals with fashion labels, signing up advertisers and, in some cases, booking lucrative television commercials. Tve ever popular Bryanboy signed with Creative Artists Agency, a Hollywood firm better known for representing A-list actors!

But what do you think? Would you as a blogger, sign with an agency? Or do you think the whole thing is pompous?

Full article can be read on the New York Times. 

Are bloggers losing their credibility?

11 Sep
Fashion writer Susanna Lau, author of the Stylebubble blog. Photograph: Karen Robinson

Fashion writer Susanna Lau, author of the Stylebubble blog. Photograph: Karen Robinson

According to a new post in The Guardian, the blogging market is becoming saturated, which means it’s being considered to be less special.

It suggests bloggers need a gimmick, something to set them apart:

“One thing is clear: as Gypsy Rose Lee would say, you gotta getta gimmick. You can’t just be a plain old fashion blogger who posts pictures from the runways. Now, it’s about choosing a theme. There was Penny Chic, which styles outfits with clothes from Walmart; there was the Ghetto Fashionista, which ‘keeps a pulse on the runway and the hood’, and the Idiosyncratic Fashionista, for ‘women of a certain age’,” said  Daily Beast journalist Isabel Wilkinson.

It hints that there’s no sustainable business model as of yet for being a full-time blogger, but maybe this needs to be addressed by those who are pro bloggers?

Surely though as more and more bloggers wish to turn pro, there will be a path which other bloggers can follow, without having to sell out.

Read the full article here.

What do you think? Let us know!

Blogger Spotlight: Katie’s Beauty Blog

10 Aug

Here at Teacup, we love bloggers. We love their versatility, their talent and the sheer warmth of the blogging community. That’s why we decided to have a regular feature called ‘Blogger’s Spotlight’, to really showcase the talent out there.

The angelic-looking Katie Snooks

The angelic-looking Katie Snooks

Our first post of this series focuses on the ever-s0-incredible Katie Snooks – a beauty blogger with a great flair for photography (she has just graduated from a degree in this after all!). Read on to see how this very pretty beauty blogger gets it so right (and with over 1400 followers on her blog, she’s doing something right).

You’re obviously a very talented blogger, but how did it all start for you?

Thank you!  I started my blog as a hobby during the second year of my photography degree.  I have always been obsessed with makeup and photography – and so a blog seemed an obvious way to bring my two passions together (and a way to chat about makeup without boring my friends)!  I blogged for around seven months before I started getting hits and now, here I am.

What do you do for a day job and does it complement your blogging?

I’ve just graduated from university so now I’m looking for a job in photography.  I work as a customer consultant/make up coach in The Body Shop part time and have done for the past six years, which is probably what made me so crazy about all things beauty.  Working there is a good way to follow makeup trends and to be able promote my blog to customers that I do makeovers on.

One of Katie's many tips on makeup

One of Katie's many tips on makeup

As a photography student, what would be your dream photo job?

I always thought I wanted to be a beauty photographer, but now because of my blog I couldn’t imagine just taking photos of make up – I’d want to play with it all too!  I’d love to work with a magazine as beauty editor/photographer.

Who would you most like to photograph?

Awh that’s a tough one!  I’d love to photograph a really charismatic guy; Ben Whishaw, Johnny Lee Miller, Desmond Harrington (that way I could swoon over them at the same time!).

What blogs inspire you?

A few of my favourite blogs; http://blaironabudget.blogspot.com/http://avainwoman.blogspot.com/,http://www.starvioletbeauty.com/http://www.25flondon.com/ .  I love blogs that are honest, that talk about different topics; beauty, fashion, books, music and ones that are easy to look at with their own, clear photographs.

Katie shows off her flair for fashion as well as beauty

Katie shows off her flair for fashion as well as beauty

What makes a good blog post?

Honest, funny and easy to read content and good photographs.  I like reading reviews and people’s personal opinions on products and topics.

What’s been your best/worst experience as a blogger?

Best experience – talking with other girls about makeup, getting to meet other bloggers, being invited to blogging events and the freedom of being able to be speak about products I’ve tried and loved or disliked.

Worst – negativity in the blogging world; although I haven’t been affected by it, it upsets me to see other bloggers having a hard time with ‘anon’ readers being harsh.  And how much time it takes up, haha!

How do you manage juggle your blogging, tweeting and everything in your day to day life?

I tend to do most of my blogging in the evenings or in any spare time I get – it takes around an hour for me to get one post up (planning post, taking photographs, writing, editing) and so its quite time consuming but I also find it relaxing.  I have a blackberry phone which has a twitter app so I can tweet when I’m out and about.  In the last few months of university I found it really difficult to juggle my final project, my dissertation, blogging as well a trying to maintain a social life; my friends do often ask me in disbelief how I fit it all in daily!

Advice for new bloggers?

Enjoy it!  Do it for yourself, talk about things you are passionate about:

Mid last year, between eye shadow swatches and shampoo reviews, I wrote a post on my favourite books because I am a complete bookworm.  I wasn’t sure how my readers would find this as it had nothing to do with beauty, but it’s an interest and love of mine and so I took a gamble and posted it – surprisingly my readers really enjoyed it and I got some amazing feedback on that post.

Be yourself, personalize your blog, let your personality shine through!

If you were to recommend one product to Teacup’s readers, what would it be?

Oh my gosh that’s difficult! Probably either Batiste Dry Shampoo (lifesaving product!) or anything made by Sleek Makeup (affordable and great quality.)

And there you have it folks, everything you need to know about the very talented Katie. Go over and read her blog at http://www.mesluxes.blogspot.com/

Treat Social Media Like Real Life: Don’t Ignore Your Customers

9 Aug

“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.” – Bill Gates”

Mr Gates certainly had a point here and it’s something a lot of brands are still ignoring. Despite many brands embracing social media and having presences on everything from Facebook, to Twitter and more, some people still don’t know how to use it properly.

It has come to our attention that several brands are using Facebook and are engaging with their fans, but are doing something crucially wrong. What’s that you ask?

They’re deleting Facebook comments, or even worse – banning users from their Facebook pages.

Never before have brands had the opportunity to be so close to their customers, so the worst thing about this is that you might have deleted that user, but that person uses social media and chances are they’re on Twitter too. So everybody is going to know that you’ve deleted them, which isn’t going to give the best impression.

A Small World

People talk out there…and they will be talking about you, your brand and exactly what they think about it. Some of these people are bloggers, who are influential and someone who your customers trust more than brands. This is worth bearing in mind.

The best thing to do is to use these negative comments and learn from them. These comments are sometimes a lot more honest than you’ll receive in general, because these users are not afraid to speak their mind and that trust is worth its weight in gold. Talk to your customers – they want to be heard.

A two-way relationship

Only listening to and responding to positive comments won’t allow your brand to grow online – there’s no scope for that. So take those negative comments and really use them to turn unhappy customers into happy customers.

By engaging with users in a way that allows for them to feel listened to, you’re going to do better in sales, have more of a welcome on social media and more than anything – create a positive online brand awareness.

Happy tweeting

Some of Teacup’s friends also told us that they experience a lot of brands who also don’t know how to fully use Twitter. This is a shame, as this is a very powerful medium and brands have the world at their feet through this microblogging site.

Brand’s main sins were only retweeting content that was about themselves, or not engaging with users on Twitter. That’s the normal sin on Twitter – only talking about you. Who wants to be in a one-way conversation? You would hate it at a dinner party, so why do brands think this is okay on Twitter?

Take an interest in your followers, create conversation (but don’t interrupt user’s conversation – it’s not very respectful to just butt in!), and make sure you know who your brand’s influencers are and what they’re talking about. Don’t ignore them either, otherwise they will start shouting!

Make sure you talk about things that aren’t all business related – it’s all about humanising brands. People want to know you’re not a robot.

Basically, it’s simple. Brands should act like real people in real, everyday situations:

  • Don’t be rude
  • Don’t ignore people
  • Don’t just delete people
  • Do talk about more than just sales
  • Do engage with people
  • Do talk about more than yourself
  • Do ask questions

Do you think we’ve missed anything? Do let us know – we’d love to hear your views!

Vogue puts together the Influencer Network of powerful women in social media

14 Jul

The idea is that brands can use the influence of these women who have a strong reputation on Facebook, and fashion site Polyvore.

Vogue has ever been the biggest influence in the fashion sphere and has cleverly used this to also hold sway in the social media sphere.

These people then test new products, give brands their honest opinions based on their social media expertise and knowledge.

“There are a lot of people who are self-appointed experts,” says Susan Plagemann, vp, publisher of Vogue. “The biggest difference is, we’re developing a program of ambassadors who spread the word digitally across a very big network about the access that’s been given because of Vogue.”

So who are these influencers?

Well a lot of them are young bloggers who have become self-confessed experts on the fast-moving world of fashion and blog at their disgression about this.

Some of these include:

Bonnielee Cuevas  she founded a lifestyle website, Pink Couture Life, empowering people, she writes, to “live happy, stylish, and in the pink.”

Christa Marzan is a 24-year-old blogger. She describes herself as “just a girl who likes fashion.” She counts some 1,678 Twitter followers.

So there’s probably nothing stopping a lot of bloggers on Twitter out there to apply for this themselves and let’s face it – its a great thing to put on a CV!

Will it work?

E consultancy seriously questions the idea of using people such as bloggers, some with only a reach of 400 or so on Twitter to advise multi-billion pound companies. Are these people really that influential and should brands buy into a network that really might not be as qualified as they want?

What do you think of the Influencer Network? Would you want to be a part of it?

Let us know!

Teacup and Twitter: a beautiful relationship

12 Jun

This last month has seen Teacup really launch on Twitter and making over 400 new friends. This is great for us and really has us excited about our future.

Some of the most interesting people we’re meeting are the bloggers. This bunch of creative, intelligent and insightful people are a pleasure to chat to and we’re really looking forward to meeting more of you!