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5 Ways to Get Free Samples by Blogging Reviews

2012 September 18
by Annie Wallace

I love being a blogger. Having a blog is like having your own personal space, one that is only yours and no one else’s. You can say whatever you feel, talk about thing that excite you, share your expertise on topics that you are passionate about. Some of us even manage to make a living out of it, whether meager or successful.

One other positive that you might not know about is review work. Yeah, it doesn’t sound that exciting. But it is when you take a moment to think of those free samples you will be getting to review them. All from companies eager to have your endorsement

You have probably heard some hype over the last few years about how this is a dying industry. No one is giving out samples anymore, and bloggers have to buy their own products if they want to review them, ect. Which was true for a short time, about between the 2008 and 2010 years. With a major recession going on, the way writers were treated by the corporate, PR and marketing sect left much to be desired.

But things are getting back into full swing, and companies seem more willing to play nice once more. They realized that bloggers are an important resource, not someone to bully into writing for no real payback. Many of which had to learn the hard way when they began having trouble finding people who would review items.

Getting free samples is easier than you think. Here are a few tips.

  1. Contact The Company. The most direct way usually pays off pretty well. Make a list of companies in your niche, especially that have products you have been genuinely interested in trying. Write a positive and polite email, or give them a phone call. Keep your pitch short and full of relevant information, such as your blog URL, your experience writing and why you want to review their product. Make sure it doesn’t go beyond a paragraph or two for initial contact, as many people will skim pitch messages and won’t bother reading through the whole thing. Be sure to only pitch companies you like and believe in. For examples, there’s genf20plus.com selling doctor-approved dietary supplements or lifecell-anti-aging.com that promotes revolutionary anti-wrinkle cream. Look for something unique and interesting!
  2. Start Doing It At Your Cost. If you want companies to send you things, you might have to prove yourself first. Writing reviews of things you are already trying is a great way to do that. Next time you try a new product or brand, make sure to pay attention to your impressions. After using it for awhile, write a review with plenty of information and honesty. Don’t do it to catch attention, as that will come on its own in time. Just keep in mind you are providing samples and showing off what you can do.
  3. Utilize Social Media. A fast way to catch a company’s eye is through their social media page. Made to engage customers, you can let them know that you are looking to review their product, and you will be speaking directly to their social media team. Which means you will be more likely to contact the right person to authorize the review, or someone who can get you in touch with their PR department.
  4. Sign Up For Blog Network Sites. Trying to find something like a guest post or a review opportunity used to be a lot harder than it is today. Now, a quick Google search will find plenty of websites (both free and paid) that handle connecting companies, websites and bloggers. They are already looking for reviews, so your success rate will be higher. You can also find other blogs who are looking for reviewers on their own sites, and they might have the samples you are wanting.
  5. Look For Sample Opportunities. You can get samples pretty much anywhere these days, even if they are small ones. When you are out shopping you can usually pick up a few and use them, which can catch the eye of the companies you are writing about. You can also find samples online, through the websites themselves. Walmart, Walgreens, Kroger and other companies will often have these posted at the beginning of the month. Or look at this About.com post with a list of places to check out.

Do you know of ways to get free samples for blog posts? Share the tips in our comment section!

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