Yesterday we shared with you five quick tips about how to approach other bloggers to help your business.  Today we will share with you the tools and techniques you can use to find those bloggers who will be most effective in helping your business:

The tools / techniques

Spend time researching on the following websites to learn more:

Quantcast.com is good for measurement / demographic data. As a blogger you can choose to become ‘Quantified’ by placing its tracking code on your pages. This helps it measure direct traffic, to provide more accurate data compared with the panels and toolbar-based measurement companies (comScore, Neilsen, Alexa, etc). Quantcast relies on panel data for blogger demographics.

Delicious is useful as a discovery engine. It allows you to search blogs by tags, in order to narrow the selection. Look out for the number of bookmarks to gauge popularity, and the date of the first submission. It is also worth checking out the background chatter in the Notes section, to get an idea of what people are saying about a blog. Delicious helps you to quickly place blogs in categories, and can help you work out the editorial scope.

Digg, Reddit and StumbleUpon should be cross-referenced to identify (niche) blogs that have the viral factor, and knowledge to create the kind of content that people like to share. They can also help show you the kind of content that does well on user-powered, voting-based sites.

Facebook. It is perhaps most useful to dig around to find blogs with the most active or passionate communities.

Wefollow.com hooks into Twitter and allows you to find ‘blogs’ and ‘bloggers’, or to search by topic, e.g. ‘marketing‘. You can sort them by the number of followers or influence. Follower-to-following ratios on Twitter are important when trying to calculate influence. Blogger tweetstreams with lots of @replies and retweets are better than headline-only Twitter action. Another good tool is Followerwonk, which allows you to search Twitter bios for keywords (e.g. ‘blogger‘).

Google Reader is a great way of subscribing to blogs (and filtering them for relevant content).

Blogcatalog and other blog directories can be useful ways of quickly finding relevant blogs.

Blogger sidebars / blogrolls. Hunt for treasure in the ‘Friends’ section of blogger sidebars, where they link to related bloggers.

Google Analytics. How many bloggers linked to your pages last month? Check your inbound links to see which bloggers are already warmed up and friendly. A ‘thank you’ email is a very good way of introducing yourself. Bloggers simply love polite people. When looking consider the volume of referred traffic and also the author’s approach to anchor text.

Blog comments / @replies. If you run a blog then keep a close eye on the comments to spot bloggers. Again, these folks are warm and more receptive (unless they’re violently disagreeing with you!). Look at the blog comments on other blogs too. And any bloggers who @reply you on Twitter are ripe for engagement.

There are plenty of other tools and techniques out there so by all means let us know what we missed by leaving a comment below or visit WSIIMS – WSI Digital Marketing Services in Surrey, Sussex, Kent and throughout the South East of England.

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