Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Landing Brand Partnerships as a Blogger - Paid Partnerships

 

The long-awaited tips for paid partnerships! If you're new to this series, I recommend going back and reading through my blog posts about product trade partnerships and Media Kits ahead of reading this post! I know it's so easy to discount product trade and downplay those partnerships' importance to your portfolio but those partnerships will help build your Media Kit and give you more metrics to share with future potential business partners. Having a Media Kit on hand will be helpful for negotiating with contacts before any agreements are reached.


How to Price Services


To determine rates for deliverables you offer, refer to resources like fohr. They verify that your following engagement is authentic which is a good verification to have on your Media Kit. They also have tools to help you determine your rates. I like to take a look at each separate product offering. Make a list of what deliverables you can offer. For me, that would be Instagram in-feed posts, Instagram Stories, a blog post on my website, ongoing partnerships, giveaways, and Reels/TikToks. I'm newer to TikToks and Reels, so I wouldn't charge as much for creating that content as I would for an in-feed post or blog post. Eventually, as I make more video content and I become more of an expert I can eventually raise my prices. But from the standpoint of a brand, a company would want to work with me on deliverables that are currently my strong suit. So I often throw in Reels & TikToks as a part of the partnership so I can broaden my portfolio in that area. Additionally, sometimes brands may offer a lump sum for a few different deliverables. The most common pair I see are Instagram Post(s) and Instagram Stories. My advice is to always be open to the conversation, which we will cover later in this article.


Pitching and Being Pitched


There will be times that you are pitched, but don't forget the power of reaching out and networking! I pitch brands all the time and that is how I've landed some of my ongoing partnerships. I recommend going to the company's Instagram and clicking the contact button to get their contact information. There should be an email to contact and they might not be in charge of influencer partnerships but odds are they know the person to put you in contact with.


Always email as though you're emailing your boss or a client. Be professional but warm. When a brand pitches me, I often read over the email, attachments or information they send, and take a look at their social media channels. Also, look at the photos that the brand is tagged in. By taking the time to read, review, and research you're seeing if the brand aligns with your brand, if the company has a solid business practice, and if you want to work with them. You don't have to work with every brand that reaches out to you and you shouldn't plan to work with every brand that reaches out either. You need to make sure you have a good mix of sponsored content and organic content so that you don't come off as inauthentic to your followers. 


Once I do my own research, I always respond. Even if you're not planning on working with the brand, you never want to burn a bridge. Always thank that person for taking the time to reach out. Brand contacts work really hard to pull lists of influencers and bloggers to reach out to about partnership opportunities! If deliverables aren't listed, I tend to ask for more information about their ideal deliverables for their campaign. Once they send me more information on that then I attach my most up to date Media Kit and explain that it is attached for their review and has information about metrics across channels and my typical rates for different types of content. 


Negotiating 


When discussing deliverables with a potentially brand partner, it is important to not have an all or nothing attitude. It's important to approach the conversation with professionalism and tact. You wouldn't want to talk to someone who threw a temper tantrum or was difficult to communicate with - so do not act that way with your contacts. 


When negotiating, also make sure you allow enough time for shipping, to test or try out the product, create content, edit, and post. Another item to discuss is how you will be paid out and when. Is the payment NET 30, NET 60 (Payment in 30 days, 60 days, or even 90 days)? These are important things to ask about so you can plan ahead for when you can expect to be paid. Also find out if you need to send an invoice, if they will pay you through PayPal, direct deposit, or if there's something else they had in mind.

Sometimes, companies won't be able to pay you or might want different deliverables or bundles of deliverables, and my advice is to always hear them out. You never want to be hostile or rude because in the future they might have a budget and be able to enter a paid partnership with you. Additionally, people will never forget the way you make them feel, and being rude when you don't get your way is a good way to be blackballed from different companies and PR agencies. 


When to Walk Away


Although the idea of being paid is enticing and for some the ultimate goal for blogging - it's important to ground yourself in reality when making commitments. Make sure that you always disclose that you need to try the product (if you haven't already) before posting any endorsement content. 


Does this company align with your brand? Would you buy from this company with your own money? Do the content deliverables and deadlines align with your schedule and current workload? Are they asking for too much? These are the questions you need to ask yourself! Your followers will know if you're just partnering to partner with a brand. They will not trust you or your opinion if they notice you're selling out and sharing items you wouldn't normally share if there wasn't a monetary agreement. 


Make sure you're listening to your gut and that you're planning content that resonates with your audience and is a true representation of you and your brand. 


There's a lot that goes into the backend of blogging and it can definitely be overwhelming! It's important to remember that it's okay to slow down, take a breather, and practice self-care. You're going to find your way and you're going to grow your blog. All of these posts will always be available on my page for reference and as always, I'm here to answer any questions! Happy blogging ladies! 

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