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3 Secrets to Successful Mom Blogging

By Jennifer James | Tweet this article.

One of the things I am learning more and more is that this thing we call “mom blogging” is always changing. As more companies approach us and as our voices become more valuable in the blogosphere we can demand more, especially when we begin to collectively place a value on our time. Here are a few secrets to mom blogging I’ve learned over the years that I thought I’d share.

Yes, You Can Charge for Giveaways:
How many of you are tired of doing giveaways? They’re tedious and annoying, aren’t they? At the end of the day, giveaways really don’t bring anything of real value to our blogs except for fleeting traffic and a pain in the rump, or maybe that’s just me. I admit: I’m perpetually unorganized so giveaways are a never-ending nightmare for me! To remedy my disdain for them, last year I decided to place giveaways in my media kit. If companies want me to do the legwork for them and promote their product on my sites as giveaways, then they have to pay for it. Pretty simple. I don’t do nearly as many giveaways as I once did (thank goodness!), but when I do at least I’m compensated for my time. Want to know how much to charge? Honestly ask yourself this question: How much is my time worth?

2.       Remember: PR People Are Your Friends:  Way back in the Web 1.0 days when I started my first web sites I worked with a lot of PR firms, as I do today. Out of the blue, one firm contacted me and asked if I wanted to be a parent spokesperson for Pull-Ups. Of course I did! It was a great experience working with one of the best PR firms in the world as well as a leading brand. I learned a lot from that opportunity, but the most valuable lesson I learned was relationships with publicists can lead to wonderful opportunities. Even though there are some PR firms that don’t get mom bloggers, many of them do and you never know when they’re looking for the next mom to give an opportunity to. It may be you!

3.       Hook Up With Cision: There has been no better resource for me over the years to receive relevant products for review than Cision. Cision connects media outlets (you) with PR firms looking to place products in the news. As new media has changed, mom blogs are the “go-to” outlet for a lot of companies, so if you want to begin receiving products from companies to review, I suggest signing up in the Cision database. It’s important to note, that just because you’re in the Cision database doesn’t mean you will be deluged with products. Make sure your blog is professionally designed, attractive, and up-to-date and soon you will begin receiving product pitches from the top PR firms in the country.

Jennifer James (@mombloggersclub) is the founder of the Mom Bloggers Club.


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Comment by Mary Davis on May 18, 2009 at 7:14am
You're amazing, Jennifer! Thanks for the awesome information.
Comment by Lucy on May 10, 2009 at 11:45am
What if you dont want to review products and you just want people to advertise on your site. How to you go about doing that?

Comment by Maria (ConversationswithMoms) on April 25, 2009 at 1:37pm
Thanks for the tip about Cision. Also, I like the fact that you believe in your Time and that it's worth some monetary value. That's great.
Comment by Kelly Razzano on April 25, 2009 at 7:31am
This is great info. I signed up for Cision, and you're right was getting emails left and right. I sent back emails to the PR people letting them know I was having an upcoming networking night for my readers and did they have any give-a-ways I could use as door prizes. You wouldn't believe the response! Thank you, thank you, thank you. I have learned so much since joining!
Comment by Tiffany on February 17, 2009 at 3:16pm
Nice Article. Thanks for the tips!
Comment by Dexter's Super Savvy Mommy on February 10, 2009 at 11:09am
Thank you very much!!
Comment by Mom Bloggers Club on February 5, 2009 at 3:56pm
Re: Cision. Click the link above and simply fill out the form or email your information to Cision.

Re: Media Kit: Here's a template I put together to help you create one:

Re: Rates: I put together some tips about figuring rates. It all depends on your traffic and influence among your readers:
Comment by Mommy Niri on February 5, 2009 at 3:46pm
Wonderful article, and would be curious like the rest answers to the above questions.
Comment by Dawn Papandrea-Khan on February 5, 2009 at 2:33pm
I would also love to know about putting together a professional media kit. Does anyone have any advice?
Comment by Dawn @ My Home Sweet Home on February 5, 2009 at 2:10pm
Cision sounds great, but I'm having trouble figuring out how to sign up with them, too.
Comment by Ann Harrison on February 5, 2009 at 2:07pm
I'm with Steph. Great tips! However, I've tried to contact Cision and I received the reply "Please remove from your list". Ouch! I don't think I headed in the right direction :->
Could you point me in the right direction Jennifer?
Comment by Cindy Schultz on February 5, 2009 at 1:24pm
I would love to know what is in your media kit! I have been working on one for a few weeks. I have been with Cision for about 2 months now and I have benefited greatly from our relationship.
Comment by Lisa @CrazyAdventuresinParenting on February 5, 2009 at 11:32am
Great advice, thank you!
Comment by Emily on February 5, 2009 at 9:00am
Very helpful article. I just received an offer for a product review/giveaway but since I am new mom blogger I just don't know how to deal with it and I don't have any idea how much they should pay me. Can you please give me a hint how much charge ranges? .
Comment by Kathleen on February 5, 2009 at 8:41am
Thanks for the advice but I too am lost on how to sign up with Cision. Also what all goes into a media kit??
Comment by kikarose on February 5, 2009 at 12:36am
Oh, I'm so glad I'm not the only one who finds giveaways, well, challenging. I would so much rather give my readers a discount on the product that I'm reviewing or even a free shipping code. I actually think that that would be better for companies anyway, time sensitive discount codes drive more people to buy than a giveaway.

Thanks for the list! Great advice there!
Comment by Nicole - The Pixel Boutique on February 4, 2009 at 11:03pm
Great post, Jennifer. I am always to "bashful" to ask for payment for reviews/giveaways. But you are so right. It takes valuable time.
Comment by Steph on February 4, 2009 at 10:31pm
Those were great tips. Thank you! But I must be missing something... How do you sign up with the Cision database? I've searched their website, but I can't find a way for media to GET on the dbase. Can you point me in a direction? Thanks!
Comment by Dawn Papandrea-Khan on February 4, 2009 at 10:12pm
Great article! So how do you charge, by hour? Do you have any tips for coming up with a professional media kit? I have been contacted a lot lately by companies to do product reviews & giveaways and I really want to be presenting myself in the proper way.

One giveaway can take me a good couple hours from start to finish and my time is definitely worth something. What are your thoughts on pricing?
Comment by Kimberly on February 4, 2009 at 9:45pm
Thanks for the tips!

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