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Friday
Feb032012

Making the Most of Celebrity Gifting

By Shara Lawrence-Weiss

Question:

“I just signed up for a celebrity gifting. How can I make the most of it?”

Submitted by Bola from Slimy Bookworm

Reply from Shara – MommyPerks.com:

There are numerous factors involved in this. Some celebrity gifting services are free while others cost hundreds of dollars to participate in. Some of the gifting companies will offer more than just the gifting but most will not (blog posts, tweets, facebook links, key words used in the posts for SEO, etc). You need to know what you are getting for your money and what the company will be providing. If the company is going to provide a blog post, you’ll want to keep up on that and re-tweet the post, comment on the post for SEO (using your website as the back link), link the post to your facebook account or Google+ account, etc. All of this helps with your own SEO and branding.

You can also blog about the gifting yourself. Some companies shy away from this because they don’t want to be judged by the readers who will think, “Oh – how stupid. She gifted a celebrity. Who cares?” My advice, then, would be to focus your post on specific things and not on the celebrity. For instance, if your gifting company is donating money to a charity, from a portion of the sales, mention this in your blog post: “10 percent of the proceeds are being donated to the literacy group ________. We are proud to be a part of this gifting. Not only do we really enjoy this celebrity and the work they do, we also value the charity group that they support. We thought the gifting would be fun, great for SEO and branding and as a topper, we’re helping to send more books to children in need. It’s a win-win!” When you take the focus OFF the celebrity endorsement portion and place more value on the other aspects of the gifting, there is less room for judgment from your readers.

They may now think, “Oh, a celebrity gifting. Whoopie. But hey. At least they are helping charity. That’s cool.”

You can also mention in your post WHY you like this particular celebrity (character traits) and what prompted you to do the gifting in the first place. By adding the celebrity’s name to your post you’ll again increase the SEO value of the article. People Google these names, after all.

Tweet and Facebook your blog post and the posts of anyone else in the gifting group. If other business owners blogged, support their posts by promoting them as well. By cross-linking to one another in your write-ups you will give more SEO value to the posts as well.

You could add a nice picture to the post, showing what was given to the celebrity (from you or from the group, as a whole).

Many celebrities have endorsement contacts with other companies and cannot, for legal reasons, endorse the gifts that are shipped to them. Some of them refuse to send thank-you notes for this very reason; for fear that their “thanks” will be viewed as some kind of endorsement. Therefore, it’s better not to count on the letter or photos (you can hope for them, of course) but rather to focus on what YOU can do to promote and gain the most SEO from this.

You can also add the gifting to your media page. For instance, you could add a button that links back to the post (from the gifting service – if they wrote one), talking about who you gifted or you can subtly mention the gifting among other buzz-worthy comments:

*As seen on __________

*As reviewed by __________

*As interviewed by __________

*Gifted our product to ___________, a favorite celebrity of ours who often works to help children in need (we like that!)

Etc. Etc.

Please note: some gifting services will claim that unless you get a thank you note or photo, the gifting is totally worthless. This is only true if the gifting company is doing nothing more to help you: no blog posts, no SEO guidance, no tweets, no facebook postings, no back links, etc. SEO and social media promotions are a critical part of online small business success. If the gifting company is not offering any of this then it’s true – you won’t be getting much for your money. If they are offering these things, however, then you are certainly gaining something from the payment: SEO, branding assistance, back links, key words, information for your media page and so on.

Shara Lawrence-Weiss has a background in education, early childhood, special needs, freelance and marketing. She owns various websites including: Mommy Perks, Kids Perks, Personal Child Stories, Early Childhood News and Resources and Pine Media (co owner). Shara is an active member of her town charity group and a Library Board Member. Learn more about her at Mommy Perks.

Reader Comments (9)

This is great info - I love the idea of promoting it as doing good and not "look what I did." I've haven't done the celebrity gifting yet, but it's best to know these things before I do. I have often thought about not getting a Thank You simply because of the worry that the celebrity didn't like the gift - I had never thought about the contracts. Great point and that's what I'll tell myself ;) Thank you, Shara!

February 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda S.

Thank you Shara! This is a little bit of insight into celebrity gifting that I was unaware of! I am participating in my first celebrity gifting package with Womentorz and Jennifer Garner, and I really have no idea what to expect or how others would perceive this sort of promotion for my product. Very good information, I will certainly be happy to share!

February 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJana Niemela

Great information Shara!

February 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAndrea

Amanda, Jana and Andrea: Thank you for reading the post and for commenting. I'm glad that the post helped! Gifting can go well if you know WHY you are doing it and don't get your hopes up for unrealistic thank you notes, photos, etc. Many times, the celebrities will only send those things back if/when they have worked with a PR company or Rep they personally know (like... an old college buddy or someone who helped them to fame in the first place, etc). This is not always the case but often it is (that old saying... it's all about WHO YOU KNOW). You can also ask around and inquire from other business owners who THEY got notes back from: what did they do right in order to make that happen? A little sleuthing can help in this regard :-)

If you come to the conclusion that you're okay with NOT getting a note or photo back, however, then focus on the SEO and back links. Make the gifting work for YOU!

February 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterShara

Well put Shara. I know there was a similar post about WHY gift celebrities or REALLY I HAVE TO PAY, I don't quiet remember but I went into great detail with my experiences and things to think about. I think you did a great job informing everyone about why or why not! Well put!!

SEO, SEO, SEO.....Thanks again!

February 29, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSusan

I found this artcile to be very helpful and I'm so excited to participate in a celebrity gifting that also gives back to charity. Your efforts have been outstanding and I look forward to the next gifting opportunity.

Thank you!

February 29, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMelissa

Thanks for your comments, ladies!

February 29, 2012 | Registered CommenterDawn

Thank you so much for your hard work in not only putting this gifting together but in helping us maximize the exposure. You and Melinda did a fabulous job during the entire process and I can't thank you enough.

February 29, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJennifer Powell

Susan, Melissa, Dawn and Jennifer: Thanks for the nice comments and thank you for participating in a gifting! Melinda and I both appreciate each of you and your unique products!

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterShara

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