Last Updated on 18th October 2023 by Sarah Sarsby
In this blog post, I’m going to discuss how you can secure brand collaborations as a blogger.
As you start out as a blogger, securing brand collaborations can be difficult. But don’t worry, I’ve got your back, as I’m going to share all the tools you need to start securing those exciting brand collaborations. This post covers securing collaborations via email. However, with a bit of adaptation, this method would easily work via social media too.
I’ve worked with hundreds of brands, so I’ve definitely learned a few tricks on how you can best secure brand collaborations. And in the beginning days of blogging, outreach work is essential. If this is a topic you’d like to learn more about, then please keep on reading.
Know your brand
Before you start reaching out companies, you need to truly know your brand. Here are just a few things you should know about your blog:
- What do you blog about?
- Who is your blog aimed at?
- Why does your blog stand out from the rest?
- Why is your blog unique?
- What does your blog bring to the table?
- Stats (both website and social stats)
If you know these things about your blog, when it comes to pitching to a brand (more on that later), you’ll be able to sell your blog and everything you can offer much more easily.
You must bring something different to the table from other bloggers in your field, else why would a brand want to work with you? Don’t worry, things like ‘providing in-depth and honest reviews’, ‘industry experience’ and ‘unique tone of voice’ all count. Just know what makes your blog distinctive.
Points to consider before reaching out to a brand
Before dropping a brand an email, you need to consider a few points about your own blog, the potential brand and what you’re looking for in a collaboration.
Why do you want to work with the company?
You need to know why you want to work with the potential company. Make sure it’s a brand that clearly fits in with your niche. For instance, I’m a beauty and lifestyle blogger, so working with a gaming company wouldn’t be a good match for my blog.
You also need to think about why you specifically want to work with that company. What do you like about them? Is there a particular product that grabs your attention? Again, this will help a lot when it comes to pitching to the brand.
Don’t just take up any offer that comes your way or reach out to a tonne of companies that you know nothing about. Brands will be far less inclined to work with you if your request doesn’t seem sincere.
Why should the brand collaborate with you?
Brand collaborations are a two-way thing. This is where you can draw on the knowledge I mentioned under the ‘know you brand’ section so you can ensure the collaboration is beneficial for the brand too.
For instance, my main blogging strength is reviewing products in an honest and thorough way. This builds trust and reliability amongst my readership, so brands might be more inclined to work with me so they get more, in-depth coverage about their products.
Again, understanding why the collaboration is mutually beneficial will make your pitch much stronger.
What are you looking for in a collaboration?
Consider why you’d want to work with a brand and what type of collaboration you’d like to secure.
For instance, do you want to work with brands that specifically focus on sustainability? Do you require the beauty brands to be vegan or cruelty-free for you to consider working with them? Are you wanting to be paid for a collaboration or are you happy with gifted products?
Personally, gifted products work a treat for me as I love trying new makeup and skincare goodies. Plus, this gives me new content to share on my blog. But there’s definitely nothing wrong with wanting a paid collaboration either!
What to include in your pitch
Great, so you’ve established what your brand is, what you’re looking for from a collaboration and why brands should work with you. Now it’s time to reach out to brands to secure a collaboration.
Here’s what you should include in your pitch to a brand:
Clearly include the company’s name and the fact you’re enquiring about a collaboration in your email header. Something along the lines of ‘[Brand’s name] collaboration opportunities‘ is fine. Grab their attention quickly and make your intention clear, so the person on the other side knows why you’re reaching out and is more inclined to open your email.
Introduce yourself and a little bit about your blog. This doesn’t need to be anything more than a few lines but mention your name, your blog’s URL and what content you publish. You might also want to include what your blog particularly excels at and why that might appeal to the brand to pique their interest.
Provide examples of what you can offer the brand
If you’re hoping to write some product reviews, for instance, it would be a good idea to link to some reviews you’ve written for brand collaborations in the past. This gives them an idea of the type of content you’ll create for them and also shows them that you’ve secured brand collaborations previously.
If you’ve not worked with a brand before, don’t worry! Include links to similar content on your blog as an indicator of the type of blog post you could offer them. This will allow them to see your writing style and what kind of coverage they will good.
Explain why you want to collaborate with the brand
This part is the most important: telling the brand why you specifically want to work with them.
I can’t stress this enough, but do your research. Read the company’s about section and understand what the brand is about.
If you like the fact that they use sustainable packaging, tell them and say it’s important to you too. If you’ve tried their products before and they’re fantastic, tell them how much you love the brand. (Bonus points if you can link to a blog post where you’ve discussed the brand before).
Tell the brand why you want to work with them. And specifically that brand too.
Companies are inundated with bloggers requesting collaborations who clearly don’t know anything about the brand. And it shows. Make it clear that you do know the brand and why you want to work with them.
You could also bring into the conversation something you’ve seen the brand do on social media, just to show the brand that you’re genuinely interested in them.
Include a call to action
Encourage a response from the brand with a simple call to action. I always ask companies if they’d be interested in working with me and mention that I’m open to any ideas they have. If you’re looking for a specific collaboration, make sure you mention this in your call to action.
After this, just sign off positively and say that you hope to work with them soon. Just your normal email pleasantries here.
Congratulations, you’ve secured a brand collaboration! What next?
Fantastic! The brand has responded saying they’d like to collaborate. So what now?
Well, here’s where you negotiate the collaboration and set out what you and the brand are both offering one another. If it’s a gifted product, will you be solely writing content on your blog or promoting it on social media too? If it’s a paid collaboration, how much are you getting paid and are there any deadlines involved?
Just be clear about what you’ll both be getting out of the collaboration. I try to give brands a date of when I will publish the content on my blog and always share the link with the brand once my post is live.
You didn’t get a brand collaboration this time…
Don’t be disheartened. It happens to all bloggers. In fact, you’re almost certainly going to find that more brands don’t respond to your email at all or say that they’re not collaborating with bloggers at this current moment.
And that’s fine.
Just don’t lose hope because you will get a yes with a bit of perseverance. As soon as you get your first brand collaboration, you’ll find securing future collaborations easier. After all, when companies see you providing bomb content for other brands, they’ll want in on the action too!
Take your time, repeat my steps and you will get a yes at some point.
When you secure a brand collaboration, always get back in touch in the company once your blog post is live. Let them know it’s been great working with them (if it has lol) and say you’d be happy to collaborate in the future.
It’s important to build a good rapport with companies as it will make any potential future collaborations much easier to facilitate.
Other than that, be proud of yourself for securing an awesome brand collaboration and getting your blog out there! Keep working hard and keep producing fire content.