No matter what kind of advertising strategy your business is using, you want to be sure you’re doing something that will ultimately help you reach your goals. That’s why sponsored blog posts can be so intimidating—after all, it’s hard to prove their ROI, and how do you even know if they’ll work for your brand?
That’s why today I’m clearing up some of the mystery of sponsored posts. While I can’t tell you whether or not they’ll work for you, there are a few questions you can ask yourself to help determine if sponsored posts are right for your brand.
Let’s jump right in.
1. Who are your target customers, and who do they trust?
A good starting place for any marketing strategy is a solid understanding of who your customer is. Dive into your customer personas to help you decide if your target customers would respond to sponsored posts.
Ask yourself questions about your personas like:
- Where do they find out about products?
- Who do they listen to for recommendations?
- Which social media platforms are they on?
If you can envision your target persona trusting bloggers and reading reviews online before making a purchase, you probably want to try sponsored posts.
If you’re still not sure, look around and try to find blogs in your niche. If they’re out there, check to see if their posts perform well on Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook. If there is an audience out there that’s already engaging with posts in your niche, there’s a good chance that sponsored posts will work for you.
2. Do in-depth explanations or reviews tend to sell your product?
If there is an education hurdle to overcome before someone purchases your product, blogs are a great place to find customers. Bloggers are able to use photos and videos to explain how your product works, providing a different perspective than your marketing copy.
If your product requires a how-to or an explanation, why not let a blogger help explain your brand?
Not only can bloggers explain how your product works to their own audience, but if you work with the right bloggers, they’ll start ranking for keywords like “how to use X” or “X product review.”
If you have interested customers that just need a little more information before making a purchase, these are keywords they’re likely to search for. Warm up your leads and help them convert by ensuring that they can find the answers they’re looking for from a trusted authority.
3. Are you looking for authority?
Sometimes, you just want to get your name out there. Whether you’re in the process of rebranding or you’re brand new, it can be helpful to borrow authority from established publishers.
After all, they’ve already put in the work of finding an audience, creating a brand, and getting readers who trust them. It makes sense to borrow a little of that authority through their endorsement.
If you are looking for name recognition, be sure to ask that your brand be the center of the post. While larger companies can get away with being one of many ingredients a food blogger is using, if you’re a smaller brand, you want to make sure you get the bulk of the article devoted to your business.
4. Are your competitors using sponsored content?
While you shouldn’t blindly copy advertising strategies your competitors are using, you also shouldn’t necessarily ignore what they’re doing.
If you notice that your competitors are using sponsored blog posts as a part of their marketing strategy, it might be a good sign that you should consider using them as well.
After all, it is a clear sign that there is a receptive audience out there. If they’re finding bloggers to work with, you can too.
Plus, using sponsored posts will give you a way to share what differentiates you from this competitor.
5. Do your display ads work as well as you’d like?
When you’re looking at a finite marketing budget, it can be hard to know how to distribute your ad spend.
If your display ads no longer deliver the ROI you’re looking for, it might be time to start thinking about how you can use content to connect with customers. While it might feel like a larger upfront investment, sponsored posts can be a great investment when your audience has gone ad blind.
Plus, unlike display ads, sponsored posts stay up forever—meaning you could continue to see a return on investment long after the initial publish date.
Use the Paved ROI calculator on any publisher profile to see the CPCs you could be getting with sponsored content.
Advertise with Sponsored Posts
While sponsored posts aren’t right for every brand, they can be a great way to get your name out there and connect with readers on a familiar platform.
If you’re ready to implement your new sponsored posts strategy, sign up as a Paved advertiser today. Not only will you be able to browse to find the perfect publisher to work with, but you’ll be able to work with them seamlessly all in one place.