In today’s food blogger tip, we share some advice from two accomplished food truck bloggers, Stitches n’ Dishes and DFW Food Truck Foodie, on how to extend your blog’s reach through gaining exclusive content for foodie fans to enjoy and through boosting your blog’s SEO value by using social media press releases.
Lesson 1 – The key to a successful food truck blog: Building relationships with food truck owners for exclusive content – DFW Food Truck Foodie
Building relationships with food truck owners is the key to any successful food truck blog. The owners provide content above and beyond the food reviews that are written and can provide back stories and interesting commentary to be included in the reviews. Having a relationship with the owner can also provide opportunities to break stories or get exclusive content for your blog, just because the owners like and trust you. Here are some tips on how to leverage your relationship with food truck owners for maximum success:
Food truck reviews
Be fair. Even less than stellar reviews are accepted , as long as they are accurate and fair. The truck owners understand constructive criticism and understand that the review has to be honest or the writer loses credibility.
Show your support for food trucks
Be visible. Certainly, you can write about a truck from afar, but relationships are built when the trucks see you and know how to communicate with you. Whether you are eating at the trucks, taking friends to eat with you or sharing the truck’s Facebook posts, the trucks like to know that you are supporting them.
Setting boundaries with food truck vendors
Set boundaries. It is not the job of a blogger to become a trucks owner’s PR team, or business partner Determine where your boundaries are and let the trucks know. They will respect you for it and you will continue to maintain neutrality.
Keep confidential food truck information private
Keep secrets. As you build relationships, the truck owners will share their excitement over a new concept and then ask you not to share that information. Honor that request! It builds trust and people want to share with those they trust; when they are ready to release the news, you will be the first they think of.
Cross promotion is mutually beneficial
Understand the relationship is two way. Gandolfo’s New York Deli Dallas Truck owner Randy Wolken, says “bloggers play a pivotal role in helping us expand our reach to potential customers”, on the other side of the coin, the best blogs would not be the best without exclusive content from the truck owners.
Lesson 2 – Boost your blog’s SEO with social media press releases – Stitches n’ Dishes
At Stitches ‘n Dishes, we use social media press releases not only to “get the word out” about our blog posts, but to extend our blog’s reach. What, exactly is a social media press release, though? First, the social media press release is a very powerful tool in any food blogger’s social media marketing tool kit. On the surface, a Social Media Press Release may appear very similar to a traditional media press release, but there are a few key differences. The primary difference between a social media press release and the traditional media press release is audience.
Traditional press releases typically announce something, and are submitted to newswires through PR services with the intent to be published in a newspaper. Social Media Press Releases are aimed at the blogosphere and social networks. The intent is to create stories, rather than announcements, that will be “picked up” by other bloggers and shared on social networks virally, and increase back-links to your blog from these sources. Services such as PRUnderground submit releases to online newsfeeds, as well as some of the traditional newswires, such as the Associated Press. The main difference is that these services focus on online, social distribution.
We use the following guidelines for every social media press release that we submit.
Does the blog post have viral potential?
Not every blog post needs a social media press release. They do cost money, after all. First, decide if your blog post could have viral potential – does it talk about a hot topic? Is it compelling or controversial, or is it highly entertaining?
Research and use trending keywords
Carefully research trending keywords that are associated with your blog post. Be sure that you’re using these keywords in the blog post itself. Be sure to also include the trending keywords in the summary of the release – this will be the text summarized in search engines beneath the headline. Finally, Spread your trending keywords throughout the body of the release (heavier at the top end.)
IMPORTANT: repeat your keywords at the end of the release.
Formatting for social media press releases
Write a catchy headline, and be sure to include your trending keywords – this is absolutely critical. For example, I chose “New Facebook Timeline Page Layout Improves Social Media Marketing for Food Trucks” for the title of one of my recent releases about a blog post. It’s compelling and contains several very hot trending keywords that not only grab attention, they’ve got lasting power. This release made it to the top of the search engines in less than five minutes and has drawn thousands of readers to the Stitches ‘n Dishes blog.
Include excerpts (copy and paste) parts of your blog post into the body of the release, but write a story around the pasted content. Keep the release to around 400-800 words.
Provide links back to your blog, and specifically the particular blog post you’re writing about. Don’t over-do this. A general rule of thumb is no more than six links in a release. Spread them through the body, and tie them to keywords whenever possible.
Silver Spoon Contributors
DFW Food Truck Foodie
Hi I’m Stephanie Hawkes, aka DFW Food Truck Foodie. I’ve always loved food and travel and was excited when the street food culture came to Dallas/Ft Worth and I could combine both loves. By day I work for a large corporation, so blogging allows me an excuse to get away from the office for lunch and go have fun!
Stitches ‘n Dishes is the creation of Christopher Ford and Andrew Nicora, and it’s inspired by Stitch, an American Staff. Terrier mix / Bichon Frise, born October 24, 2010.
We’re passionate about food, fun, photography and film. We also love the outdoors – hiking the city streets, the fairgrounds, or the beautiful trails all around California. Andrew literally grew up in the catering and concessions industries, doing everything from bussing tables, serving, cooking, back-stage hosting to you name it, and Chris has worked as an event promoter, organizer, photographer and marketing consultant.
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