So, you’ve spotted a brand you want to work with. You’ve established your blog and you think you’d be a good fit with this epic company. Maybe, just maybe, you’ve seen an incredible opportunity that you can’t help but put your name forward for. But, for any of these scenarios, how do you get noticed? How to you create the best possible chance of getting in with the brands you want to work with? How do you build a relationship with a brand?
Over the past few years, I’ve been on the blogging side of these situations and I’ve been on the brand side too.
You might say that I’ve been able to pick up a few tips and tricks just by seeing the vast amount of good, and the bad, emails that come through from influencers. And do you know what? I want to share that knowledge with you. While these points might seem a bit irrelevant, maybe even a bit obvious, you’d be surprised at how many people don’t do the following. That then allows the good ones, the ones that are meticulous in their communication and writing, to shine through and grab that much wanted brand attention.
So, how do you build a relationship with a brand and form a bond that might just get you sent to tropical lands or land you with a contact that could be valuable in your blogging career? Here’s a few things I think might help you get the collaboration of your dreams.
If you’re speaking with someone for the first time, it’s pretty polite to introduce yourself isn’t it? The same goes if you’re sending an email to a brand. Address the reader by name if you can, – or tweet the brand beforehand to try and find out this info – tell them who you are, what your blog is and what you write about. This is much more appealing compared to emails that are just a plea to take a look at a blog. Especially when the brand has probably got 100 emails of a similar kind to read. Keep the email short, sweet and full of awesome info about you and your blog, show of your brand and personality, and you’ll go far. Being a nice person in the blogging world can take you a long way when working with a brand.
This is such simple and easy mistake to make and you’d be shocked at how many people get in touch about a collaboration, without including their actual blog name or a link to their blog. Some brands might skip over your email all together, others might go to the effort of emailing to ask you but it all depends who’s on the other end of your email. The key here is to make it as easy as possible for the person on the other end to access your blog, the thing you’re wanting to shout about. Whoever is reading your email is a human at the end of the day, there’s no guarantee they’ll make the effort to hunt down your blog from your email address. They might just think that you haven’t gone to the effort, so why should they?
So, if you’ve added in your blog link, have you added in your social media handles too? Brands like to have a look at how you interact with your audience and what kind of content you put onto your social platforms. And really, they like a little nosey too! Adding in your social media handles, in a link in the email or in your email signature, is a sure fire way they’ll be stalking your Twitter quicker than you can say “I’D LOVE TO WORK WITH YOU”.
This one might not always pay off if the social execs and outreach team aren’t in close communication with each other. However, on the off chance they are, get involved with the brand on social. Don’t be fake or anything, but if you genuinely love the content they’re putting out, and if you genuinely like the brand, double tap their Instagram photos, reply to them when they’ve tweeted out their latest blog post or daydream and like their Facebook posts. If the brand is on the ball, they’ll figure out who their natural ambassadors are and you’ll more than likely be one of the first in line they want to work with or invite to events.
If you’ve pitched an idea, or got in touch regarding a collaboration and you don’t hear back from a brand, send a follow up email. Brands get hundreds of emails a week from influencers and it may be that your email has got lost in the inbox of Gmail or the brand just hasn’t got around to responding yet. Remember, it is a human on the other end who’s probably got a million other tasks to do that week. Unless you’re calling randomly every other dat, you won’t be annoying the person on the other end. In fact, you may just prompt them to drop you a message to update you on the situation.
I’m not saying you need to do their job for them and remind them to email you back but it’s just a friendly nudge. And remember, you want to work with them so go out an create that opportunity. Unless it’s a blank no, there’s always a chance and you want to be at the forefront of that brands mind if a collaboration does come up.
This is where knowing your blog and what you love comes into its own. Nothing sticks out more like a sore thumb than a blogger getting in touch just because they want another freebie. If your blog posts are full of content advertising this product and that product, don’t be too disheartened if you don’t get those bigger campaigns. You need to be genuine about what you’re writing or vlogging about. Be picky and the opportunities that you want to pour your heart and soul into will come along.
Okay, okay. Some of you might not agree with this point. You know, giving a brand exposure for free and all. But, if it fits in with the content you’re creating, why not give the brand a mention? Again, if they’re on the ball, the brand will have alerts set up notifying them whenever a person mentions their brand in a blog post or links to them. If they even more cool, they might even share it on their social channels if it’s relevant for their social audiences. It will get you noticed and is a sure fire way to be like “Hey, you brand, over there. Look, I love your brand that much I’m already talking about it and my audience LOVE it. Imagine what we could do if we collaborated on a unique campaign together!”
If you’ve expressed an interest in working with a brand and they host an event, if you have the chance, go for it. Brands often host events or have tables at conferences because they want to get to know you. Of course, some might not offer value for you but the brands that are doing it right, offer value in the bucket load. Plus it goes back to building that relationship up which often is more value to the brand than numbers.
I know some of these points might seem a bit obvious but honestly, you’d be surprised at how little bloggers are approaching brands in a good way. Just doing things a little bit differently could make a massive difference between a brand discarding your email or responding with enthusiasm. Make sure you stand out from the crowd next time you get in touch with a brand, you never know where it might take you!
Do you have any other tips for influencers out there who are wanting to build a relationship with a brand? What advice would you share?