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Driving Big Growth + Awareness {on a small budget}

Mar 25 2015

by Lauren Hopkins

Whether you run a small business, sell a fantastic product, or edit your own blog, the question I receive most frequently remains the same. “How do I spread the word about (fill in the blank) without breaking the bank?”

One of the best ways to drive product awareness and business growth is by developing relationships with like-minded companies and blogs. That way, you can work together to co-promote each other in the most effective and reasonable ways. Below are a few tips paired with real-life examples to serve as inspiration for your outreach.

{one} As mentioned above, reach out to people whose company or blog relates to yours. The products should make sense together and it’s helpful if your social following is similar.

client case study: Hayden Reis makes sailcloth tote bags and accessories. We developed a relationship with COOLA Suncare and Mott50, makers of sun-protective clothing. These items pair well with Hayden Reis products for photo shoots, media and blogger outreach, co-promotions and giveaways. When given opportunities, the brands thoughtfully co-promote each other on blogs, in print, and even on television. They also have similar social followings so it doesn’t feel like one brand is carrying the others.

Custom Hayden Reis Totes and COOLA Suncare Featured on A Piece of Toast for Sally's Bachelorette Weekend Celebration
Custom Hayden Reis Totes and COOLA Suncare Featured on A Piece of Toast for Sally’s Bachelorette Weekend Celebration

{two} Occasionally, think outside of the box. Sometimes it’s OK to make connections with brands just because you like what they do. Their product or blog might not be the most natural fit for your brand, but if you think their demographic and customer is similar to yours, sometimes it’s fun to shake it up.

client case study: The Mrs. Box creates the most lovely, vintage French velvet, heirloom ring boxes. Typical co-promotions would include outreach to newly engaged bloggers (done) and ring companies (check). For an original promotion, we paired The Mrs. Box with tastemaker and cookbook author, Libbie Summers. She, alongside photographer Chia Chong, created the most delicious images of edible rings tucked inside the decadent ring boxes. Libbie and Chia featured the images on their blog, Salted & Styled, and various social media platforms. We thought outside of the box, literally, to generate interest.

Edible Wedding Rings in The Mrs. Box // Styled by Libbie Summers with Images by Chia Chong
Edible Wedding Rings in The Mrs. Box // Styled by Libbie Summers with Images by Chia Chong

{three} Set aside a dedicated gift budget and share the love! Target companies and bloggers who relate to your product and gift them a product, or products, that suit their taste. Include a thoughtful and personal note and wrap it beautifully. Most importantly, understand that gifting does not always guarantee coverage.

client case study: Designer and blogger Emily McCarthy has a lovely Shoppe filled with customized items to dress your home, desk or party. We recently launched a blogger outreach campaign and gifted items to like-minded bloggers who would appreciate something sweet from Emily. Each item was thoughtfully chosen with the specific recipient in mind. This effort is new, but we’ve already received rave reviews from major bloggers praising Emily’s products and her attention to detail. Some of those include Julia Ryan of Julia Ryan Creates, Chassity Evans of Look Linger Love, and Ashley Lastovica of The Fancy Ashley— whose super fun leopard ice bucket and custom cocktail napkins are featured below!

Blogger Ashley Lastovica of The Fancy Ashley features Emily McCarthy's Ice Bucket & Custom Cocktail Napkins
Blogger Ashley Lastovica of The Fancy Ashley features Emily McCarthy’s Ice Bucket & Custom Cocktail Napkins

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Lauren Hopkins View More Blog Posts from this Author

Lauren was born into a strong entrepreneurial family and she always hoped to forge her own path. A graduate of Furman University, she honed her service and networking skills in luxury real estate marketing for the venerable Sea Island Resorts. Her communication skills, account management, and public relations savvy was further cemented during her time with Butin Integrated Communications, where she managed and maintained high-level accounts. After the birth of her first child, Lauren followed a zeal for the small business and launched LBH & Co. in 2013 to provide an intentional group of clients individualized attention and unmatched passion for their services and crafts.



She and her husband, Lee, are raising their daughter (Grace) and son (Ford) on St. Simons Island where she is active in their Church, her children’s schools, and several community organizations that remain close to her heart.

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