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How to get more than a free meal and a one night stand. Secrets to Building Successful Relationships between bloggers and Hospitality brands.

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Christina Thomas of GoEpicurista.com shares her insight at #FLBlogCon 2017 on how to develop successful relationships between bloggers and hospitality industry that result in long term benefits. Bloggers will learn how to get noticed, the do's and don'ts of covering hotels, restaurants and special events, attending media events, pitching brands, ways to work together and ways to leverage their influence. Brands can also learn how to work with influencers, where to find them, how to approach and pitch, and different ways to work with them for a mutually beneficial authentic collaboration.

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How to get more than a free meal and a one night stand. Secrets to Building Successful Relationships between bloggers and Hospitality brands.

  1. 1. GET MORE THAN A FREE MEAL & A ONE NIGHT STAND. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017 Secrets to Building Successful Relationships Between Bloggers & Hospitality Brands
  2. 2. CHRISTINA THOMASLet’s #MakeSomedayHappen Join me! @GoEpicurista @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017 ‣ Foodie on a mission to inspire you to celebrate life with friends and “Make Someday Happen” one delicious bite, sip and trip at a time. ‣ Publisher / Editor of GoEpicurista.com ‣ Voted Best Local Blogger in “Best of Orlando 2017” by Orlando Magazine readers. ‣ Founder of the Food Service Social Media Bootcamp, teaching restaurants and food’preneurs about influencer marketing and social media engagement. ‣ Freelance food and travel writer for luxury print and digital publications incl. Orlando Sentinel’s Signature Magazine. ‣ 20+ yrs Hospitality Industry veteran.
  3. 3. CHEERS! THANK YOU TO OUR SESSION SPONSOR! @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  4. 4. WOO HOO! THANK YOU TO OUR STAGE SPONSOR! @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  5. 5. GET MORE THAN A FREE MEAL & A ONE NIGHT STAND. / CHRISTINA THOMAS @GOEPICURISTA WHAT YOU’LL LEARN TODAY. ▸RELATIONSHIP ADVICE FOR BLOGGERS & HOSPITALITY BRANDS ▸How To Get Noticed, Get a Date and Make It Last. ▸Do’s and Don’ts of Covering Restaurants and Special Events. ▸Do’s and Don’ts of Media Events. ▸More than 5 Ways to Work with Restaurants and Hotels ▸Other Ways To Leverage Your Influence ▸PLUS….Easy Tips to Entertain Like a Mixologist. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  6. 6. ENTERTAIN LIKE A MIXOLOGIST @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  7. 7. BOURBON APPLE PIE SANGRIA THIS IS NOT YOUR TYPICAL SANGRIA… @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  8. 8. BOURBON APPLE PIE SANGRIA BY @GOEPICURISTA INGREDIENTS. ▸ CK Mondavi and Family Chardonnay ▸ Vanilla Bourbon ▸ Fresh Apple Cider ▸ Fresh Apples & Oranges ▸ Apple Pie Spice (Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Cardamom, Allspice) ▸ Apple Pie Simple Syrup ▸ Bitters ▸ Club Soda @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  9. 9. BOURBON APPLE PIE SANGRIA BY @GOEPICURISTA PREPARATION. ▸ Apple Pie Spice Simple Syrup ▸ Vanilla Bourbon Soaked Apples ▸ Chardonnay, Apple Cider and Bourbon Soaked Apples mix ▸ Apple Pie Spice Sugar Rim ▸ Bitters ▸ Club Soda ▸ Garnish ▸ GET THE RECIPE AT GOEPICURISTA.COM @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  10. 10. BOURBON APPLE PIE SANGRIA BY @GOEPICURISTA TIPS TO ENTERTAIN LIKE A MIXOLOGIST AT HOME 1. Red, White & Bubbly. 2. Keep It Fresh and High Quality. 3. Think Like a Chef: Syrups, Shrubs & Bitters. 4. Glassware. 5. Clean Ice. 6. Garnish. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  11. 11. GET MORE THAN A FREE MEAL & A ONE NIGHT STAND. Secrets to Building Successful Relationships Between Bloggers & Hospitality Industry @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  12. 12. LET’S LOOK AT A TWEET THAT WENT VIRAL. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  13. 13. IT’S NOT ME, IT’S YOU. WHAT WENT WRONG? @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  14. 14. THE RESTAURANT’S SIDE. Who are you? Why should I give you a free meal? I don’t need exposure. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  15. 15. THE BLOGGER’S SIDE. Does the restaurant understand influencer marketing? @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  16. 16. THE RESTAURANT’S SIDE. Freebies for selfies!? Nope. Non-bloggers don’t understand the industry & support the restaurant’s decision. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  17. 17. THE BLOGGER’S SIDE. Even bloggers disagree on whether the request was appropriate. To Pay or Not To Pay for a meal? @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  18. 18. THE RESTAURANT’S SIDE. Many brands believe influencers only want free product. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  19. 19. THE BLOGGER’S SIDE. There’s a right way and a wrong way to pitch. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  20. 20. HOW TO DO IT THE RIGHT WAY? @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  21. 21. IT’S ALL ABOUT RELATIONSHIPS. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  22. 22. “WE KNOW MOST OF THE FOLKS WE WANT TO WORK WITH IN THE REGION. WHEN SOMEONE HAS TO INTRODUCE THEMSELVES AND WE’VE NEVER HEARD OF THEM, WE OFTEN PASS. A RELATIONSHIP NEEDS TO BE FORMED FIRST.” Orlando PR Professional GET MORE THAN A FREE MEAL & A ONE NIGHT STAND. / CHRISTINA THOMAS @GOEPICURISTA @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  23. 23. SWIPE RIGHT? WHERE DO BRANDS AND BLOGGERS CONNECT? @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  24. 24. ON SOCIAL MEDIA!@GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  25. 25. “Love don’t cost a thing.”- J.Lo “Don’t be so stingy with your love on social media. Follow, Like, Comment, Share, Retweet. Seriously. Do it!” Christina Thomas, @GoEpicurista @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  26. 26. HOW DO I GET NOTICED? @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  27. 27. GET MORE THAN A FREE MEAL & A ONE NIGHT STAND. / CHRISTINA THOMAS @GOEPICURISTA HOW TO GET NOTICED. ▸ Identify brands you want to work with and be social. Be engaging. But don’t be a stalker. ▸ Comments on social get you noticed. Likes get lost. ▸ Dine On Your Own Dime. Yes! You will spend your own money. ▸ Build relationships with other bloggers. Collaborate. ▸ Establish expertise in your area. ▸ Contact PR agencies and pitch. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  28. 28. HOW TO GET A DATE? MEDIA INVITES. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  29. 29. GET MORE THAN A FREE MEAL & A ONE NIGHT STAND. / CHRISTINA THOMAS @GOEPICURISTA HOW TO GET INVITED. ▸ Genuinely Love The Brand & Show It. Be a top customer! ▸ Check their social. How can you help them? ▸ Be a Match. Both brands must fit. Luxury vs. Value? ▸ Great Food Photos & Quality Content is important! ▸ Curate your feed. ▸ Be Professional with what you post. All eyes on you! ▸ Meet in person. If you frequent a restaurant, talk to the manager. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  30. 30. TURN ONS / TURN OFFS. WHAT NOT TO DO DURING THE PITCH? @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  31. 31. GET MORE THAN A FREE MEAL & A ONE NIGHT STAND. / CHRISTINA THOMAS @GOEPICURISTA THE PITCH ▸Don’t pitch blind. Establish contact first. Do they have PR team? Determine needs and if they work with bloggers. ▸Pitch the right way. Benefits not demands. It’s not what they can do for you. It’s what you can do for them. ▸Quantify. Offer ROI. Offer a unique angle and story. A review is boring. A story is interesting. ▸Don’t rush the relationship. ▸Don’t expect /demand free product and paid work before you’ve even had a chance to get to know each other. ▸Don’t pitch a product you never talk about unless you have a good angle. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  32. 32. DO’S AND DON’TS OF COVERING HOSPITALITY INDUSTRY. YOU GOT THE DATE. NOW WHAT? @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  33. 33. DON’T BE A DIVA. IS YOUR LAST NAME KARDASHIAN? No one likes a diva. Trust me. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  34. 34. BE RESPONSIBLE WITH YOUR INFLUENCE. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  35. 35. “There’s no need to blast a business if you didn’t like it. Always be honest but don’t be mean. This may get trolls to like you but will not get you invited to work with brands.” Christina Thomas, @GoEpicurista
  36. 36. THE FIRST DATE. DO’S & DON’TS OF MEDIA EVENTS. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  37. 37. GET MORE THAN A FREE MEAL & A ONE NIGHT STAND. / CHRISTINA THOMAS @GOEPICURISTA DO’S & DON’TS OF MEDIA EVENTS. ▸ Show Up. Be Professional. ▸ Engage in social coverage for event. Before, during and after. ▸ Understand expectations and follow through. ▸ What’s The Brands Marketing Message? / Find Your Story. ▸ Be Proactive with Hashtag and Social Handles. ▸ Educate yourself on the menu and establishment. ▸ Be extra mindful of opening events. Not everything is perfect so don’t expect it to be. ▸ Don’t over-indulge. Be Professional. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  38. 38. OK WITH BLOGGERS. NOT WITH GUESTS AROUND. GET THE PHOTO! @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  39. 39. GET MORE THAN A FREE MEAL & A ONE NIGHT STAND. / CHRISTINA THOMAS @GOEPICURISTA DO’S & DON’TS WHEN DINING OUT ON YOUR OWN. ▸ Be respectful of other guests when taking photos. ▸ Don’t complain of cold food. ▸ Don’t pretend to be a critic. Don’t blast the negative. ▸ Food is subjective. Be honest. Aggregate opinions from the table. ▸ Not everything is “ahhhh-mazing!” Respect your followers. Would you drive out of your way for it? Then yes, it’s amazing! ▸ Ask permission to shoot photos and video, especially in hotels. ▸ Visit more than once. Gain objective perspective. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  40. 40. FALLING IN LOVE. SECRETS TO LASTING RELATIONSHIP? LET’S TALK ENGAGEMENT. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  41. 41. GET MORE THAN A FREE MEAL & A ONE NIGHT STAND. / CHRISTINA THOMAS @GOEPICURISTA RELATIONSHIP BUILDING ▸Maintain contact. Reach out to say hello. Meet socially. Avoid the one night stand! ▸Extend the life of your content. Photos and posts can be used/ shared throughout the year(s). ▸Social Media Engagement. ▸Email brand links to your posts. Both sides should be sharing it. #FLBlogCon 2017@GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  42. 42. LET’S TALK ABSTINENCE. SAYING NO IS OK. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  43. 43. “WHY BUY THE COW WHEN YOU CAN GET THE MILK FOR FREE?” Grandmothers everywhere. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  44. 44. KNOW YOUR VALUE. DON’T ACCEPT EVERY INVITE. DON’T TAKE EVERY FREE PRODUCT. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  45. 45. PHOTOGRAPHER WRITER EDITOR PUBLISHER SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETER PUBLICITY WEB DESIGNER BLOGGER = @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  46. 46. CONSIDER THE TIME & MONEY SPENT. ▸ Time spent in location attending event is work. Fun but work. ▸ Bloggers spend on average 20 hours per blog post (varies but must take into account time of visit, research, writing, photography, photo editing, web formatting, social promotion). ▸ Bloggers spend on average $1,000-$5,000 per year in technology and equipment. Photography equipment alone can be $3,000+ ▸ Bloggers spend time and money in education as this field is constantly evolving. Online courses, webinars, conferences, etc. #FLBlogCon 2017@GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  47. 47. IT’S UP TO YOU TO DECIDE YOUR WORTH. YOU DECIDE WHAT COMPENSATION IS RIGHT FOR YOU. EXPOSURE VS. CASH? THEY BOTH WORK. Christina Thomas GET MORE THAN A FREE MEAL & A ONE NIGHT STAND. / CHRISTINA THOMAS @GOEPICURISTA @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  48. 48. INFLUENCER MARKETING WILL GROW TO REACH $5-$10B IN NEXT 5 YEARS. @PETERHORST @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  49. 49. LET’S TALK COMMITMENT. DIFFERENT WAYS TO WORK WITH BRANDS FOR A LASTING RELATIONSHIP? @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  50. 50. GET MORE THAN A FREE MEAL & A ONE NIGHT STAND. / CHRISTINA THOMAS @GOEPICURISTA 9 WAYS TO WORK TOGETHER. 1. Sponsored social media posts. 2. Sponsored blog posts and reviews. 3. Giveaways 4. Host Events, meet ups, new menu tastings, etc. 5. Advertising 6. Menu Development and Recipes 7. Writing content for website. 8. Professional photography and video services. 9. Social media management. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  51. 51. USE IT. HOW TO LEVERAGE YOUR INFLUENCE? @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  52. 52. FREELANCE WRITING. My interview with Iron Chef Morimoto, a 4 page feature in Orlando Signature Magazine!
  53. 53. TV & MEDIA.Appearance on Fox35 “Good Day Orlando” with David Martin speaking about Epcot International Food & Wine Festival 2017
  54. 54. GET MORE THAN A FREE MEAL & A ONE NIGHT STAND. / CHRISTINA THOMAS @GOEPICURISTA HOW CAN YOU LEVERAGE YOUR INFLUENCE? ▸ Guest posts on other websites. ▸ Ghost-writing. ▸ Professional Services (photography, video, content development, social media, web development, consulting, etc.) ▸ These opportunities all come up because of one thing… ▸GREAT RELATIONSHIPS. #FLBlogCon 2017@GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  55. 55. GO. #MAKESOMEDAYHAPPEN @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  56. 56. Q&A REACH OUT TO ME @GOEPICURISTA WITH ANY QUESTIONS. @GoEpicurista #FLBlogCon 2017
  57. 57. WE WILL NEED MORE COFFEE TO COVER EVERYTHING.
  58. 58. OR COCKTAILS.

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