Frequently Asked Questions About Pitching To Brands
A lot of people want to pitch to brands but before they even attempt to learn and apply the pitching process, they get hung up on this one thing: how do I know if it's the right time to reach out to brands? Then this question leads people to ask other questions. Do any of these sound familiar to you?
How many views per month do I need to have?
What's more important: engagement or following?
How many views are companies looking for before they'll consider working with an influencer?
How early is too early to reach out to brands?
How many posts do you have to have?
What data do I need to pull together to show I'm worth working with?
So today, I'm going to answer each of those questions within this post so you'll feel more comfortable with the idea of pitching to brands. Because if you create good content, you can and you should feel confident enough to pitch your skills to brands. Hopefully after reading these questions, you'll feel more comfortable about it.
How many page/video views do I need per month? |
I suggest waiting until you have at least 5,000 views per month before starting to reach out to companies for paid sponsorship gigs. If you're looking to establish yourself and are willing to do some sponsored posts in exchange for free product/services, then that number is much more flexible.
Businesses are looking to pay for two things: exposure and/or conversions from your work into sales for them.
The great thing about being a Content Creator in 2017 and beyond is companies are starting to realize that smaller, micro-influencers are often able to convert at a higher percentage than larger influencers. It's your job when pitching to work with a company to show them the value in your audience and work beyond page/video views.
And while some may see this as a disadvantage it actually helps to level the playing field for those content creators that make amazing content but don't have the massive following of the Cupcakes and Cashmere or Zoella’s of the world.
What's more important: engagement or following? |
This depends on who you ask. From a business perspective, neither matter if neither is going to result in more sales.
If you're a smaller content creator, engagement really matters because you don't have the robust monthly views to back up your value to the brand. Of course, you're still valuable but if you don't have the large monthly views to wow your target company, having high numbers or percentages elsewhere will make sure they take you seriously.
Brands are wising up to the fact that following doesn't necessarily translate into sales. I spoke with the influencer marketing manager at the largest beauty parent company in the world and they let me know that moving into 2018 they're actually focusing more of their attention and dollars with micro-influencers (defined by them as Influencers with 10,000 - 100,000 followers) because they're audiences are more engaged and they convert better.
How many views are companies looking for before they'll consider working with an influencer? |
This varies greatly from company to company but for paid sponsorship opportunities you should have a minimum of 5,000 views per month. If you have really high engagement, this number can be lower. If you're able to build a relationship with a brand rep, this number can also be lower because relationships matter - big time. Build relationships early.
How early is too early to reach out to brands? |
It's never too early but you have to be able to show that you can provide value to the brand. You're only valuable to a brand when you can exchange something for something. You wanting to make money blogging is irrelevant - what can you offer them in exchange for products/services or cash? When you're smaller or just starting out, that's your biggest obstacle but an easy one to overcome if you're talented.
How many posts do you have to have? |
Have at least 5 posts up before working to build a relationship with brands. You want them to be able to get a sense of your writing/creative/video style and just get a general sense of who you are and how they could potentially work with you in the future. Your focus, in the beginning, should be producing quality content, working on your SEO and building organic views. The pressure of working under deadlines because you've contracted out to create content is not easy to work under without the added pressure of launching a new website on top of that as well.
What data do I need to pull together to show I'm worth working with? |
Start with your strongest data first. If you're a newer blogger, make sure you have a clearly defined niche and target audience.
Now, if you're just starting out as a blogger and you know that you're ready to lay the foundation for monetizing, here is what you should do:
Start reaching out to local businesses in your area and tell them that you’d like to feature them on your blog (for free). Just make sure the store/restaurant/business feature would make sense to your audience.
After you've done this a handful of times, use the data from these pieces (views, engagement, number of shares etc) as your ‘proof’ for when you reach out to other brands and companies looking to feature them on your blog. Now that you have examples of your work, you also now have a proof of how companies can value from working collaboratively with you on your website, YouTube channel or Instagram that goes beyond monthly page views.
Have you ever tried pitching to a brand? What's stopping you? Judgement-free zone over here :)
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