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The New Stuff

Eight out of 10 PR professionals work with bloggers to gain coverage

More than eight out of 10 (82%) PR professionals work with bloggers to
provide coverage for clients, while 98% find bloggers useful or invaluable,
according to new research from DWPub.

Results of the survey of 252 PR professionals conducted in March 2012
accompany a new whitepaper called ‘The smart PR’s guide to blogger
outreach’. The whitepaper, which assesses the importance of working with
bloggers and offers practical tips, is written by freelance writer and
blogger Sally Whittle.

Of the 18% of PRs who don’t work with bloggers, 54% find it difficult to
evaluate the usefulness of a blogger, indicating the industry needs to
develop measurement skills.

“The relationship between bloggers and PRs continues to provoke debate, so
we decided to get the PR industry’s perspective on working with bloggers,”
said Daryl Willcox, chairman and founder of DWPub. “Our survey results show
an overwhelmingly positive response. Bloggers are here to stay and the PR
industry is beginning to embrace them. Bloggers need to be approached in a
different way to journalists - our research and whitepaper reflect this

The survey looked at how PRs deal with bloggers compared to journalists –
just over two thirds (67%) of respondents stated they have a dedicated
approach for bloggers, with 75% of these citing they communicate with
bloggers in a more informal tone.

Interaction with bloggers is on the rise – 74% said their communication is
gradually increasing or has become commonplace, indicating that bloggers
play a significant role in the PR industry’s daily routine.

When asked about their relationships with bloggers, 26% of PR professionals
said they consider theirs to be  strong. 54% said they have built a rapport
with bloggers, while 20% don’t have strong relationships.

The PR industry was also asked about how they measure the importance of a
blog. Interaction with readers came top, with 48% of respondents citing
number of comments, followers and presence on social media sites as key

Number of views on posts that feature clients is the primary way to measure
results from interacting with bloggers, with 33% stating this is their main
measuring tool. Clicks through to clients’ websites came a close second
(31%). Just 9% believe number of comments on a post featuring a client is
the best way to measure results.

"Bloggers are still relatively new when it comes to the press mix and not
everybody understands the etiquette when dealing with them," said Sally
Whittle, freelance writer, blogger and founder of the Tots100. “The
whitepaper shows how PR professionals can effectively work with bloggers to
create successful campaigns for clients and build strong relationships.”