Do you want to create or participate in a blog hop? Last week (Part I) I walked you through the key aspects of how to set up a successful blog hop. Today is Part II, where I’m going to walk you through the exact process I go through in hosting a ‘closed’ blog hop!
But even better…
Not only am I sharing my successful blog hop stages and timeline, I’m also giving you my EXACT email templates to swipe/copy! Isn’t that what BFF’s are for!!!
INTERMISSION: If you missed Part I, go read it now! Then head right back here for Part II.
Last weeks, key aspect #3 of how to set up a successful blog hop, was where I listed a variety of emails to send out to blog hop participants. So— let’s unpack those and the stages for each of these emails.
STAGE 1: ASK BLOGGERS INDIVIDUALLY TO PARTICIPATE IN YOUR BLOG HOP.
This can be an email, a DM (direct message), Facebook message, text or phone call. Majority of the time I simply DM via Instagram something like this:
Hello Lucy! Janine of Happy, Happy Nester and I are planning on doing a craft/décor accent blog hop with a group of 6-8 bloggers and I thought you would be a great fit! We are planning on Feb 27th. Would you like to join us?
And here’s a fill-in-the-blank to cut/paste version as well:
Hello (fill in name here)! I am planning on doing a (theme/topic of blog hop) with a group of (number) bloggers and I thought you would be a great fit! I’m planning on (insert date here). Would you like to join us?
TIMELINE: I tend to reach out 2-3 months prior to the blog hop date because (1) I’m a planner and (2) bloggers editorial calendars fill up.
Once you have ALL of the participants who have confirmed they will be in the blog hop, you can move on to stage 2.
STAGE 2: INITIAL EMAIL WITH ALL INSTRUCTIONS AND DEADLINES
TIMELINE: Roughly a month prior to the blog post live date.
This email will go out to EVERYONE participating – I include all participants in this one email together. This gives them everything they need so that they know what to expect and the deadlines. The initial email contains the following:
-the blog hop name
-date and publish time
-loop order this is so participants know who to welcome to their blog and who to send their readers to next. A loop has readers visiting all participants and then looping back to you (or whomever they started the hop with).
-a thank you
Note: I make the deadline to have their blog post link and preview photo at least 3 business days prior to the blog hop going live. Why? This forces them to be on time or if something unexpected happens, we can drop them from the hop.
Blog hops go south when people’s links don’t work from the start AND can make the blog hop stressful for all involved!
STAGE 3: REMINDER EMAIL
TIMELINE: Roughly a week prior to the actual live post date.
It’s always good to send a reminder email because ‘stuff’ happens! Maybe someone forgot or they can no longer participate. Trust me, it happens. And with a week out, you can make changes to the loop list, if need be.
I’ll forward the initial email to all participants (or you can save the initial email as a word document and attach it in the email) along with my reminder message… something like this:
Our blog hop is right around the corner and Janine & I are so excited to have y’all! This is just a little reminder email – all information is in the Jan 24th email below.
Note: Deadline for the vertical preview shot and blog post permalink is February 24th. Please send your vertical preview shot AND your blog post permalink to Tana (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Let me know if you have any questions or need anything! Xo
And here’s the fill-in-the-blank version to cut/paste:
Our blog hop is right around the corner and (host or hosts names) are so excited to have all of you! This is just a little reminder email – all information is in the (date the initial email was sent) email below.
Note: Deadline for the vertical preview shot and blog post permalink is (deadline date). Please send your vertical preview shot AND your blog post permalink to (person and email to receive preview shot and link).
Let me know if you have any questions or need anything! Xo
STAGE 4: EMAIL ONLY THOSE THAT HAVE MISSED THE ‘PREVIEW + LINK’ SUBMISSION DEADLINE
TIMELINE: This goes out immediately after the submission deadline by participants was missed. This is why I told you to set the submission deadline 3 days prior to the blog hop posts going live.
I send this email out individually as to not embarrass the participant. Here’s what I email:
Hi Jane Doe-
Just a reminder…
To provide me with your preview image (800 pixels wide x 1200 pixels high) and the permalink to this DIY post TODAY! And to also send it to the person BEFORE you, which is XYZ blog.
Hope you’re having a beautiful Saturday. Can’t wait to see what you’ve done!!!
Let me know if you have any questions. Xo
Note: Sometimes someone just forgot and they get it to you right away – no harm, no foul. Sometimes the participant is MIA. If you don’t receive an email from the participant you have to make a judgement call; (1) either wait one more day to see if you hear back from them or (2) drop them from the blog hop.
STAGE 4b: EMAIL ONLY IF SOMEONE HAS FALLEN FROM THE PARTICIPANT LIST
If you have to drop someone from the blog hop, simply send an email to all remaining participants the updated blog hop ‘loop order’ for everyone to follow. This provides all remaining participants the time necessary to update their blog posts.
*This is what is necessary for a successful and smooth blog hop!
STAGE 5: FINAL LINK EMAIL
TIMELINE: A day or two before the blog hop post goes live.
This is the final email containing all participants’ links and the preview collage image (if you’ve decided to do this type of layout). Note: The links should be TO THE ACTUAL BLOG POST, not the bloggers generic homepage url. Here’s the email if you’re doing just links:
Hi Ladies –
THIS is the full list of the participants + link to their blog to be placed at the bottom of your post.
Janine and I again just want to say THANK YOU for participating – you’ve all done a fabulous job! Excited for everyone to see it tomorrow. Please share on IG tomorrow as well! xo
Here’s the email if you’re doing the links with the preview collage:
THIS is the small collage with the full list of the participants + link to their blog to be placed at the bottom of your post.
-Simply place all of the code (the div code is below & in black) into the bottom of your blog post.
-Place the code within the text (not visual) side of your blog hop post and
-When your post is live it will look exactly like the example (see ‘end result’ below). Note: Your blog’s hyperlink color will be represented, not my orange!
If you’re not sure what I’m saying, feel free to call me: xxx-xxx-xxxx.
Janine and I again just want to say THANK YOU for participating – you’ve all done a fabulous job! Excited for everyone to see it tomorrow. Please share on IG tomorrow as well! Xo
I know I’ve given you a lot of information to digest on how to set up a successful blog hop! But, if you go through my exact process and use my swipe files, creating a successful blog hop will be pretty easy… and it can boost a lot of new traffic to your blog! Cheers.