Once Upon a Time: Team members from The Motherhood joined several hundred bloggers and a number of brands gathered in Scottsdale, Ariz., for the 2015 Mom 2.0 Summit. The theme of the conference, thanks in large part to title sponsor Dove (a client of The Motherhood’s), was the power of storytelling.
The Mom 2.0 Summit Guide made the point, echoed by speakers and sessions during the three-day conference, that “this community is shaping conversations on everything from modern parenting, to marketing trends, to racial equality.” That influence can be parlayed into business success, a means to support your family and opportunities to use your voice and platforms to impact issues close to your own heart.
Set the Stage for Your Success
In the business of blogging, a good media kit is an important tool in telling your story: Your influence and audience, topics and themes you cover on your blog, personal details like your location and kids’ ages, information about what you deliver and expect from sponsored posts – everything that will tell a brand representative why you’re a good fit for a campaign and why he or she should hire you.
Speaker Stacie Connerty of Divine Lifestyle recommended hiring someone to create a media kit for you if you’re uncertain about the format, design and information to include. And if you’re uncomfortable writing about yourself and your blog’s attributes, consider swapping with a friend to draft each other’s bio and introduction.
Brands Recognize the Power of Blog Authenticity and Anecdotes
During a panel discussion, brand representatives from Kia Motors, Best Buy, SmartyPants Vitamins and Abbott (which creates Similac and PediaSure) offered confirmation of what we at The Motherhood already know:
Companies are increasingly approaching bloggers and using social media in their marketing strategies because it works. One example: When the Kia Motors team created a blog campaign around an auto show appearance instead of hosting their usual press conference for traditional media, they saw a greater number of impressions and engagement.
While brands say that reach does matter, another thing they look for in bloggers when they consider a partnership is authentic blog and social content that demonstrates a passion and affinity for their brand or product category. In other words, share stories from the heart about the things you love, and it could help you land partnerships with your favorite companies.
In fact, Mom 2.0 is a great place to network with those companies – one of the things we like most about the conference is the number and variety of sponsors. This year, we particularly enjoyed talking with representatives from Breyers ice cream (who organized a delicious toppings bar at the welcome party) and the Juice Products Association (who created a fascinating, information-packed booth in the Sponsor Marketplace).
Visual Storytelling is Increasingly Important
While authenticity is key, this year, it’s the ability to share your story through beautiful photos and nicely edited video that will give you the real advantage. Brands are becoming more and more interested in sharing their own stories through visual mediums like Pinterest, Instagram and video platforms (such as YouTube, Vine and Instagram again).
For example, Mom 2.0 Summit title sponsor Dove is currently running a #BeautyStory campaign inspired by a letter identifying Dove as the beauty secret of four generations of women in one family. The brand chose to share this family’s story in a video to illustrate the campaign. (The Motherhood is currently working on a creative campaign for Dove #BeautyStory with a group of wonderful bloggers, so keep an eye out for their posts, too!)
To give companies like Dove an opportunity to work with you through more visual platforms like Instagram, Ilana of Mommy Shorts recommends sharing diverse photos (your kids, landscapes, pets, interior shots, etc.), so brands can see where they could fit seamlessly.
The “Happily Ever After”
Beyond working with brands and sharing stories to foster a sense of community, gathering followers and gaining influence online gives us all an opportunity to make a difference in the world around us, create awareness around issues that matter and use our voices for good. Together, we can make 2015 the year of raising all boats.
The Mom 2.0 2016 location and dates were announced during the conference, too – let us know if you’ll be in beautiful Laguna Niguel, Calif., from April 27-29 next year! Keep an eye on the website; tickets will go on sale in a few months.