Boy how we pay close attention to these topics when we start a blog. Probably the number one question I find in communities and groups I belong to is “How do I start reviewing?” and “Where can I find products for review?” I have a few sources I use that gain me excellent relationships with PR contacts for some great companies. However, if you are brand new to blogging then you want ‘examples’. Companies will be linked to your site from these resources and if you are asking for reviews, but have none to show as an example on your site, you may get disregarded.
How to set your site up BEFORE asking for reviews
This is simple. First, find products you use and enjoy and create your own reviews! Always have at least one photo and 1-2 links to the product site as well as mentions of their social media links. Make 2 points in your reviews-your personal experience using the product and a little ‘about the product’ itself recognition (some facts or information from the ‘About us’ section of their site). You want brands knowing you give opinions, but that you also take the time to learn about the company as well. Second- make sure you have a visible-labels up Top work best-spot where your reviews are kept. When a brand visits your site, you want them to not have to go digging for review samples. Keep them accessible!
Now for some top resources I use to find products
Tomoson strictly offers products sent to you by companies in exchange for reviews. Great to get started! You will very rarely find giveaway opportunities here and no paid/sponsored posts will come from this. You just get the product. They do have some excellent products though so use them!
For best results on this site: Watch the how to video!! Not only do you need to link (real easy) your social accounts from your profile page-you have to insert top and bottom copy codes into each post-the bottom html code is your FTC disclosure written for you.
Sverve is a fairly new site. I have formed some great relationships with companies through here. This one is more flexible for PR than Tomoson and you will find products to review, giveaways to offer your readers and paid/sponsored posts.
For best results on this site: As you hit Apply, always add some sort of comment in bottom box. Typically i will just say “I am happy to help. my readers will enjoy this”. You only have a short word count to use and I get many acceptance back from here. Also-this is a community as well to share your posts and Follow/Endorse other Sverve members. Stay active and it is so simple to and quick to navigate and add your posts. Find PR’s and gain post traffic all in one site!
Business2Blogger offers an open platform for brands and PR to post their needs. Not too overcrowded and this site does well weeding out spammy requests. A few days a week to once a week new content is added and you can find products needing reviewed, giveaway opportunities and paid/sponsored posts.
For best results on this site: Visit this site at least a few times a week. You will not be emailed new requests! It is up to you to log in and keep checking.
Link Vehicle– this site offers only paid/sponsored posts. You set you price you want (Link Vehicle will double that price to companies so they profit as well). You will be emailed as a company chooses you to write a post for them. You can accept or decline. You have 14 days to write a post-links will be given to you. This one is not a huge money maker as seldom are you contacted. But not uncommon to make $30-$45 a month some months.
For best results on this site: Be fair to yourself when choosing a price. I have mine set a bit low-$20 because they hardly give you restrictions and your can easily and quickly whip these posts up. But don’t set your price so low that if you are busy you will tend to decline. Not always best to decline offers unless they truly are not a fit and it will give you an option to choose as to why you decline.
Profnet– this is a site that is a bit claustrophobic. but if you are savvy enough you get to set up your profile then you pitch yourself. You will then be directly emailed by PR/brands asking you to work with them. If it is confusing to you, their customer service is great and they respond quickly! I get contacted quite often directly after sending a pitch!
For best results with this site: Do a few pitches at once. Maybe one is asking for ‘educational products to review’ and another is asking for “food/beverage products to review”. PR companies are categorized and your pitch is reviewed first. If you specify a niche then those companies can find you easier. Make sure you keep rotating pitches often.
BrandBacker-this site allows you to view campaigns-typically fashion and beauty brands. You can apply for the ones you want. Some are product reviews and some are paid/sponsored posts.
For best results on this site: Just make sure all your social accounts are connected. You have to come back and tell them once you get the product in the mail and again as soon as you publish.
Blogvertise– this site will put available sponsored/paid posts in a grab bag. You can accept or decline the offers
For best results on this site: Keep checking back and look for the grab bag symbol next to your blog. You will not be notified when new campaigns are added.
Mom Central: I have had some great paying campaigns through them. Once signed up-just wait. They will contact you as they see fit.
For best results on this site: Numbers help! As you grow, make sure you contact them to tell them your current stats! If you are new, do not get discouraged. Once contacted for any campaign, even if a free event or survey-reply and connect. Once you prove yourself, you will get contacted more often
There are a few for starters. Remember to keep record of who you join! Monthly. go back and update your profiles with current stats. Some sites may show your FB or twitter accounts connected, but stay stuck on your counts from when you last connected. Tomoson is a good example for this-just go to all your accounts and either reconnect or manually type in your current stats. One day, that company you never heard from is emailing you with a contact!