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Why Don't Brands Want Long Term Relationships With Bloggers?

As I’ve mentioned here before, I’m a firm believer in breaking out of the mom blogger conference mold and getting to know other folks in the social media space. One of the folks I’ve liked the most that I’ve met is the brilliant C.C. Chapman, author of the smart as hell book Content Rules.

C.C. is also a great blogger, and I read a recent post from him that resonated about how brands only want to “date” bloggers, and not actually get into a longterm relationship.

So true!

In the handful of examples I have personally experienced, I have gone in-depth with a brand  — touring factories, meeting founders of companies and shaking their hands, and writing about them over a period of weeks but the relationship has nearly always ended quite abruptly, with maybe an email or two and then… nothing. Except possibly pitches from the PR intern.

C.C. says in his post:

The general formula seems to be that a company will create an event/junket/program that involves online personalities. They bring us together or send us out something and for a set amount of time they get us talking, creating and sharing about them. It all comes to an end and then nothing. Silence….

I only do business with companies I’m interested in for one reason or another. I’ve turned down plenty of opportunities that just were not a fit for me. If I say yes, it is because I see something more there and want to start building a relationship.

But, I wonder if I’m the only one thinking this because most times I don’t see any long term engagement in the future. I mean one night stands are fun, but after a while most people crave something a bit more meaningful. That is where I’m at right now.

This is so dead on. I’ve wondered a great deal about what makes the small handful of companies that do make that leap and hire bloggers for in-house jobs or long term promotional opportunities different; what do they see that no one else does?

Of course, I’ve seen the good and bad of the long term relationships when they happen companies whose message gets lost in the rising star of a blogger, or a blogger disappearing into a brand. Personally, I briefly worked for a company (only a few months, ultimately) that it took me over a year to stop being associated with it.

What do you think? Should bloggers stay one night stands, or move on to being steady relationships?

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