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How can I contact websites and attract people to join my online community?

I am currently looking to attract two different groups of people to join my community to help in advertising outdoor-gear crowdfunding projects. In return, anyone who joins the network can have pro deals (wholesale) on outdoor gear through my company, This is not a stream of income because it is through another company but a service that I will provide to reward those who help out. (You can't get the deals without me giving permission to use the program.)

1. First I have compiled a list of about 1900 outdoor themed websites. How is it best to contact these sites and propose a partnership? They would share the crowdfunding projects on their sites in return for the pro deals mentioned above.

2. Second I am looking for people who are outdoor enthusiasts to share on social media. They would be sharing about 1-2 times per month on the social media platforms that they use.

What are your thoughts on how to approach both of these groups and convey the value that they receive by participating in my community?

7 Replies

Roy Gonzales
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Roy Gonzales Entrepreneur
CEO at Zobily
Kyle, The biggest issue is time vs reward. All online companies with any value have paying customers and thats how we survive. It will be very difficult to get anyone to do this for what you are offering as we currently do this type of marketing but for national companies with large budgets. Good luck! *
Julia Levy
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Julia Levy Advisor
Head of Employer Branding and digital and social media, Terra Firma Associates
Hi. Like Roy, I am a bit concerned about the time/reward for the people participating. Have you looked at Tomoson as a way to reach a lot of bloggers quickly? I am not sure if can be used in the way you are proposing, but it could offer a way to reach quite a lot of people quite quickly.
Jennifer Fortney
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20+ years’ experience in PR & marketing comms; Founder of Cascade PR, Chicago firm for small business & startups.
Roy,

i suggest changing your approach (or maybe this is what you meant):

1. contact bloggers and make the introduction. Pitch them as an opportunity to create content on the latest gear being developed. Give them content and approach as a PR opp and you may get farther. Unfortunately, they will want ad dollars in the future. You need to begin planning a budget for this.

2. Consumers can be reached through these blogs and social media

Alter your point of view from what others can do for you to what you can do for others. It will change the way you communicate what you're doing and open a door to a less "threatening" partnership that might otherwise be turned down right away.

Good luck!
Roy Gonzales
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Roy Gonzales Entrepreneur
CEO at Zobily
Nope I meant exactly what I said. Thx.
David Fowler
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David Fowler Entrepreneur • Advisor
Looking for opportunities, Currently part time APD Chief Engineer
First thing that comes to mind is that these web sites have followers, your target, because they feature content of interest to themselves. If you want more then just ad space on their site they have to have a good reason to feature your product. A great reason is would be that they use it themselves.

How about giving them product to review while offering to do a give away to their site visitors. Make a offer like, Please review my product, I will send you one to keep. And if you feel your visitors would be interested we will supply two more for you to use in a contest at your site.

This would motivate the content creators at the target site to action because it benefits them and their visitors. You get the links and good will as a result.


Peter Jones [LION: li.blueoyster~@~gmail.com]
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Peter Jones creates solutions for product USP, market messaging, team building, venture and other commercial capital
Hi @Kyle,

I went to Facebook and typed in Outdoor in the search box. Now I'm based in London, so I got heavily London biased responses, but these might still be interesting.

One is an Outdoor TV company:

https://www.facebook.com/OutdoorChannel

The other result was a number of individual London shops in a UK national chain of Outdoor Clothing stores:

http://www.cotswoldoutdoor.com/stores

May I suggest developing a partnership approach with these channels to market, or if the UK is too far to consider just now, taking the same approach in Facebook for your own local results.

Facebook has over 1bn users, and is a natural location for your type of B2C audience. So I suggest you start building a profile there that will attract your audiences, and work out and develop how to cross-incentivise potential channels and complementary product sites.

Not a quick process, by any means, and you will take many iterations to get it spot on.

Good luck!

HTH, Peter.
Peter Jones [LION: li.blueoyster~@~gmail.com]
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Peter Jones creates solutions for product USP, market messaging, team building, venture and other commercial capital
PS I find the direct approach best, personally. Try asking the question direct in Facebook first, and if they are not open to direct approach then look to reactively support their users in the channels where you want to build reputation.

Also check out Twitter feeds, in particular those channels that are responsive on Twitter, ie not just broadcast only, and then try an approach through Twitter.

You are looking for what I call an "open mindset", ie willing to listen as well as talk. Those that are open to listening, and willing to take a risk on a "new partnership", are the ones you want to work with, and the ones who better understand mutual benefit from a partnering and sharing approach to business.

HTH, Peter.

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