We’ve talked about how brands can work better with bloggers, and with 81% of U.S. online consumers saying they trust information and advice from blogs*, there’s a huge market for the influencer/brand partnership.
As an influencer and blogger myself, I’ve seen this from both sides. Participating in a brand sponsored campaign or selling advertising space on your blog is a totally different experience from managing a blogger campaign on behalf of a brand. As an influencer or blogger, there are tons of different ways to partner with brands:
- Press samples
- Event hosts
- Product reviews
- Giveaways/group giveaways
- Pinterest contests
- Sponsored ad space
- Sponsored social media posts
- Guest posts
- Brand ambassadors
- Sponsored posts
When you are a blogger looking to partner with a brand what is the best way to make the relationship work?
Here are 10 Tips for Bloggers Looking to Partner with Brands:
- Make it easy for brands to reach out to you. You should have an email address or contact form on your blog specifically for PR/business opportunities. Feel free to include what kind of opportunities you are interested in hearing about to help weed out some pitches. Create a media kit and rate sheet to send to brands that are inquiring about working with you.
- Know your audience. Once you’ve built up a following, you should have a pretty clear idea of how certain content resonates with your readers. Keep notes of what works well and what triggers negative reactions or less engagement from your readers. Make sure any sponsored content lines up with the content you’re regularly producing. Don’t be afraid to share this information with brands.
- Say “No”. If a pitch doesn’t fit well with your blog, don’t be afraid to say no. If you’re interested in getting involved in the campaign, but have other ideas of how you might be able to bring more to the table, offer the brand alternate options.
- Disclose! Disclose! Disclose! If you’re new to the blogging scene or have not yet partnered with any brands, check out the FTC Guidelines regarding disclosures.
- Reach out. If you have an idea about how your blog can work with a certain brand or product, send THEM a pitch. Don’t be afraid to strike up a conversation about a partnership with a brand.
- Be honest. You’ve spent hours of your time building a following based on your readers’ trust. Don’t throw away that trust by blogging about how wonderful a product is just because it was sent to you for review.
- Stay organized. When you’re working with a brand, their requirements and deadlines are important. Make sure you have all of the information you need and are aware of any deadlines upfront.
- Communicate. I recently asked a group of bloggers about the best way bloggers can partner with brands, and how to make it work. Almost every single response was “Communication!”. If you have questions upfront, received something you weren’t expecting, might miss the deadline, or just want to talk, don’t hesitate to reach out to your contact.
- Go above and beyond. When partnering with a brand, you should be aware of their expectations. If you enjoyed the product or enjoyed working with the brand, go above and beyond to show them. I once received a thank you note and a small gift from a blogger I had just run a campaign with. I was completely shocked and it made her stand out (which also made me think of her for the next campaign I was running)
- Be professional. If you’re a blogger looking to partner with brands, it should be treated as a job. Make sure you have a separate email address for your blog. Try to respond quickly to any email inquiries. Spellcheck.
*Source: 2012 Women and Social Media Study