A Little 'Review' Guidance From Editor Nadia Carriere of Child Mode

To send product for review or not to.. that is always THE question for many small companies (& how to).  While promotion is KEY, finding the best avenue (& most cost effective) is another job in itself.

Blogs are huge nowadays with reviews of your products and participating in a giveaway to put your product in the hands of someone in a whole new target area.  Sites that represent your industry and are a resource for your target audience are the first websites to reach out too.

As a small, Mom-Owned business, I know from experience that reviews are beneficial and a cost-effective way to 'advertise' and get promoted.  With the number of blogs out there today, its hard to know which one will give the best ROI.  Bloggers and Editors have information and references, so ask for it.  Whether you are reaching out to them or they have contacted you.

Reviews are a great opportunity to spread the word on your product and company and to get recognized by a new audience and potential customer.

In my opinion and talking with other companies, when approached for product, be selective, it's your time, product and money, so ask for stats, traffic, a referral of past reviewed companies, etc... It shouldn't be offensive to a blog/site when getting that request.  Due to the market & economy, some sites/blogs will work with you on returning the product after it's been reveiwed so that you can 'maximize' your sample/review product and the promotion the review will give. Why not? they are getting the promotion as well with all your efforts to show off your review and links back to their site, etc...

Not only did I want to share my thoughts on product reviews, but I turned to one of the most well-respected Editors and M.O.Ms I know in my Children's Industry to help us understand the other side of 'how to get reviewed' and it's benefits.

If you haven't 'met' Nadia Carriere of Child Mode yet, you are missing out.  She is a true M.O.M, managing family, life, a business and of course editing Child Mode and writing for successful, well-respected sites like Babble.com.  When Nadia writes, people read!

M.O.M Nadia Carriere – Publisher/Founder of Child Mode

I am forever on the lookout for new, exciting and innovative products for my children and enjoy keeping up to date with whats hot in the world of childrens fashion and baby gear. There are just so many amazing lines and brands out there and I find many of these fabulous companies are not “seen” or “heard”. Whether it be the latest and greatest from America, Europe and Asia, I try to cover it all.

Here at Child Mode we strive to bring news on the latest trends for babies and children as well as new innovative products and travel destinations for families. Celebrity children tend to wear the “best of the best” and so from time to time we feature “Celebrity Baby Style” where we identify the labels worn by these mini fashionistas. Stay tuned for exciting celebrity mom exclusives!
M.O.M Katie ~ Why do you choose to review products for your blog? Do you think it's beneficial to help promote that company/product?

M.O.M Nadia ~ Our website is geared towards Fashion, new and interesting products for kids so product reviews were just a natural extension for our site's content.

Social media, blogging and the entire online community has grown tremendously over the last decade and I find more and more people are using the web as their source for information when it comes to products. Before I purchase a product for myself or my family I always search the reviews online. For larger companies, this is definitely beneficial because it gives them more leverage. For smaller businesses, product reviews are a wonderful way to gain exposure! I know quite a few mom-run businesses who have grown rapidly by reviews and giveaways alone.

M.O.M Katie ~ What is a turnaround time for sending product and hearing about the review? Is there an 'unspoken' etiquette that a company should follow after sending product.. ie should they follow up prior to the review post or just wait and see without any timing?

M.O.M Nadia ~ No, I wouldn't say there is an 'unspoken' etiquette. I know for myself, I'm so swamped with requests that most of the time I won't get the chance to review a product until several weeks after receiving it. Most companies follow up after a month or two, if they haven't heard back. I usually inform the company beforehand as to when I will be posting the review, but don't mind friendly follow-ups.

M.O.M Katie ~ What type of companies and products are you looking to review? Do you seek out or should companies reach out to you and/or blogs?
M.O.M Nadia ~ We are quite selective with products and companies and like to review children's clothing, baby gear, fashions for moms, toys as well as other lifestyle products for kids. Travel reviews, family friendly hotels, cruises and destinations are also featured.

I have reached out to various companies a few times but most of the time we are the ones who get contacted.

M.O.M Katie ~ Do you/other blogs like to be 'pitched' with background story? How should a company 'ask' for a review or write?

M.O.M Nadia ~I love to be pitched with a background story! Filling me in on how the company started, what the inspiration was behind the product, etc, gives me a better feel for the person behind the brand and the product itself.

Introducing yourself and your product is a great start! Doesn't have to be too long, just a short introduction, linking to your product is good enough.

M.O.M Katie ~ Any advice to give a company looking to get the 'word out' on their products?

M.O.M Nadia ~ Besides product reviews, giveaways are another great way to gain a great amount of exposure! Twitter, Facebook and other Social Media outlets are a great way to gain traction. Contact the media, pitch to magazines, write up a press release. There are many ways to get the word out!

Thank you so much Nadia for your wisdom and insight on reaching out to blogs/sites for reivew and what us small business owners should understand.

If you have a new product to spread the word on, having it reviewed is a great way to help launch it.

Nadia was one of the first to review and test out our new KidsKreate Chalk Top Stepper and we couldnt have been happier to have her review it: KidsKreate: The New Writable & Erasable Step Stool From Kt Steppers

Follow Nadia and Child Mode:
@childmode on Twitter

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