I think the question I get asked most frequently is “how do you get stuff to review?”. One thing I have a hard time getting people to understand is it’s not as easy as just emailing a company and then them sending you a product. These companies get dozens (or hundreds) of pitches a day. So what are you going to do to make your blog stand out? Why would a company want to work with you? Unless you have a gazillion fans, you’re going to have to be different than everyone else who pitches those companies.
First, we need to discuss how to even find products to review. I prefer visiting the company’s website and finding an email address (or form) under the “contact us” or “customer service” feature. If I don’t get a response in a week or two, I’ll try a new email address with a slightly different pitch.
Next, let’s talk about the subject line in the email you send to the PR rep. There are a few schools of thought on this one but I always stick with the product name. Sometimes I will put “Re: Your stainless steel dog dish” if that is what I’m wanting to review. They will know that you’re asking about the product, so they’re going to be more likely to click and read the email in a timely fashion.
Finally, the bread and butter of the whole operation:
So like I said, you want to stand out – but you don’t want to come off as a desperate weirdo either, so you have to find balance. Use a catchy but not crazy subject line, and then create a pitch that is you. Copying someone else’s pitch isn’t going to help you much, but I have created a few sample ones for you to alter and make your own. Sometimes the hardest part is just knowing where to start. A good pitch, just like a good media kit, includes information about your blog – about your brand – about why they should want to work with you.
Pitch for product reviews/giveaways
This is pretty formal compared to the pitches I use but if your blog is different than mine it may work better than my loosey goosey pitches. :)
I attended EVENT/Conference name, and really enjoyed Company’s name booth. It was so nice to meet you. The SAMPLE/Product name you offered is now one of my favorite items!
My blog, BLOG NAME/HYPERLINK, is hosting huge giveaway event name in May and after learning about PRODUCT NAME, I think your company is a perfect fit for this event!
BLOG NAME has over # of Facebook/twitter/pinterest followers, averaging # visits daily.
I would like to schedule a giveaway with COMPANY NAME for this event in May. If you are interested in working together, please contact me at EMAIL/PHONE to discuss next steps. Attached you will find my media kit (or say please request media kit) with more information about my readership and reach, including brands I’ve worked with in the past.
Thank you for your time. I look forward to the opportunity to work with you!
Pitch for event sponsor
Hello (rep’s name, if possible),
My name is Sadie, and I am the creator of the blog, SadieLankford.com make it a hyperlink). I would love to partner with your company for a (your words)highly anticipated event coming up in May. It’s called the Big Bloggy Event and I think it would really fit with your (cause/purpose/mission/products).
SadieLankford.com averages about 30,000 pageviews each month, so this means great exposure for your business. The Big Bloggy Giveaway will run from May 1st through May 15th, and will be advertised by over 20 bloggers.
In exchange for partnering with me for this event, I would offer your shop advertising in the form of a a blog post and a shout out on all social networks. We can also work in visits to your website as part of the giveaway if you’d be interested, at no charge.
If you have any questions, please let me know. I look forward to working with you on this event.
This is great for a small blog because it doesn’t mention numbers, but you can add yours in if you’d like.
My name is NAME and I am a local blogger for CITY. I’m writing to let you know about an upcoming event that I’d love for COMPANY to be a part of. Blog group name is hosting its first annual EVENT NAME, and giving away PRIZE. I think it would be great if you’d join BLOG’S growing list of sponsors for EVENT. In exchange, I can offer advertising in the form of text link, post, ad, etc as well as shout outs on all social networks. If you have any questions, or would like to see my media kit for more information about BLOG’S brand relationships and reach, please let me know. I look forward to working with you.
And, just because I love ya…
This is the exact pitch I used twice yesterday and got immediate YES responses from. I’ve created blanks for you to customize it.
Hi! My name is name and I’m a blogger that has recently started reviewing type of product. I was browsing for something related to product when I discovered your (product name) and I’d love to partner with you for a review.
When I do a review, I include a review on Amazon as well as other sites if you request, and I always send out my reviews via social media. I have over Your number followers from various social media outlets and would love to promote your product name for you!
If you would be interested, or if you have any questions, please let me know. :)
A few more examples of pitch letters another blogger uses.
So, I hope these pitches help you get started with doing product reviews, giveaways, events, and more. Your blog will take you wherever you want it to, you just have to put the work in! Remember when you’re doing reviews, you are being hired to promote for the sponsor. Don’t just think of it like yay, free stuff!, because it’s not. Your job is to promote and hopefully bring them in more business.
Please tweet this post out, it helps a ton!
— Sadie Lankford (@sadie_lankford) April 3, 2012