Blog advertising - Is it dead?
Recently there has been a lot of talk in the industry and online about the changing world of advertising online and with publications. Obviously with the downfall (and current uprising) of Style Me Pretty and other publications like Martha Stewart Weddings, Southern Weddings Magazine, Snippet & Ink, Floridian Social, The Pretty Blog, the rumour mill has been rife with conspiracy theories. Why are they all closing down? Isn't advertising working anymore? Do brides actually read blogs?
The industry can get pretty excited when there are changes online and if we take a closure like Southern Weddings Magazine as an example, we can see that it's not all doom and gloom as it seems. SW's sister company 'Cultivate What Matters' has been a growing business for them and although a side line at first, this passion project turned out to be far more successful than their wedding publication. So, they've taken the business decision to reduce their outgoings on a less financially viable project (SW magazine) and concentrate on the powerhouse of CWM. Makes perfect sense right? Alas, the quick response on social however is one of panic that 'another' wedding publication has gone into meltdown. Not quite.
The truth is, publications and the way readers (brides) are using the internet to find inspiration and vendors, is changing. And that's OK. We need to evolve with it. There's a much bigger shift to social than ever before (if you don't treat your Instagram feed as a mini website by now, you should be!). There's a younger demographic that are getting married now - one that wasn't around when blogs were first cool (!). Influencers are on the rise. So how do we shift our business marketing plans to meet them and educate them?
Social is most likely the first platform in which we can reach our audience after Google. How do we convert this traffic and how are blogs/publications involved? Heck, some readers assume they found you on plain old 'Pinterest' or 'Instagram' when actually they've taken a few more click based decisions prior to that or after that before reaching you. Just because they're reaching us via social more, that doesn't mean it's the end of the blog. Where do you think the Pinterest content comes from? That's right, the good old blogs! So keep submitting work and getting onto social platforms that way. That content originates from somewhere.
Our social media platforms are one of the strongest in the wedding industry and we're super proud of that. And that's why it's become more apparent in our recent inquiries through Wedding Sparrow, that social bundles are the most effective form of marketing for small businesses right now. Our platforms have an engaged audience who are active and online and we can reach them directly with what they want to see. We've curated our aesthetic over the years to know exactly what people expect from us which means we know what images to put in front of them to get the best results.
As we move with the changes in the industry, we've launched our SOCIAL BUNDLES PACKAGE. Something that we've been offering behind the scenes for a while now but with more and more vendors requesting it, we figured we'd take the leap and set it up officially! With a reach of 2 million per month on Pinterest and over 800,000 impressions per week on Instagram, you can now utilize our Instagram and Pinterest platforms to reach your audience directly:
PACKAGE ONE - INSTAGRAM ONLY : 2 X POSTS PER MONTH ON @weddingsparrow (3 month contract) = £800 (£266 per month)
PACKAGE TWO - PINTEREST ONLY : 20 PINS TO @weddingsparrow BOARDS PER MONTH (3 month contract) = £600 (£200 per month)
PACKAGE THREE - COMBINATION : 2 X POSTS PER MONTH ON @weddingsparrow + 20 PINS TO @weddingsparrow BOARDS PER MONTH (3 month contract) = £1,200 (£400 per month)
In general, I personally hope these closures do not shy people away from supporting publications that work for them. And that's the key here. Using your marketing budget to be a part of a wedding publication is all well and good but ONLY if you're planning on utilizing the support of the blog/magazine too. All too many times, wedding bloggers see vendors hand over hard earned cash then disappear of the face of the earth and not return emails when the blogs want to hear from them about getting featured, communicating their brand etc. It should be a 50/50 relationship and that publication should be an extension of your brand. All blogs should work hard for you but consider what our reach can do for you!
If you'd like to try a Social Media Bundle, please email advertise(at)weddingsparrow.com for availability!
I'd love to hear your thoughts and expectations for the wedding blog industry as the way our audience uses social media continues to change...