Blogging is a fun new world that a lot of us live in, and since I’ve been blogging there has been a massive increase in brand/blogger partnerships. We all want to get to that stage where we get the odd gift from a brand and even make a bit of money from reviews or features, but it can be quite hard to be discovered in the huge sea of bloggers that are now out there. I sometimes feel a bit disheartened when I see blogger friends of mine receive opportunities that I never get, but if you think about it, there are SO many bloggers for brands to choose from that it’s not exactly personal.
In my opinion, you get nothing unless you ask.
Many brands have PR companies that deal with blogger and youtube collaborations, and a lot of them are always on the lookout for new people to work with. Why wait for them to find you? I’m going to give you my top tips on discovering brands, finding their details and how to introduce you (and your blog) to them in a way that they’ll remember you in that big blogger sea.
HOW DO I FIND THE BRANDS?
Let’s face it, we can’t all work with Topshop, and we have to accept that. SOZ!
Unless you’re some sort of blogging guru with 1 million followers, it’s unlikely that you’re going to get deals with the big brands, so my first tip is to be realistic. As a blogger, it can actually be really fun working with smaller or newer brands to help them expand their reach – after all, new brands are in need of the help to get their names out there, so you can both benefit from collaborations. Search hashtags like #bloggerswanted on Twitter, or #smallbusiness on Instagram. See what other brands your blogger pals are collaborating with and send them a message. Obviously, only stick to brands that you would genuinely use, but don’t be shy about contacting them!
SO, HOW DO YOU FIND THEIR CONTACT DETAILS?
As I mentioned before, most brands have a PR department within their brand, or a PR company who works for them. If you want to contact a brand, have a scout around their website for emails in their Contact Us pages – usually generic enquiries emails will be your best bet, and if it ends up in the wrong inbox then someone usually forwards it on to the right department for you. You can also search ‘PR *brand name*’ and you might find the PR website that deals with that company, and there’ll always be some sort of email on there!
TWITTER & INSTAGRAM
If you’ve seen a brand on social media, don’t be afraid to tweet or private message them. Most brands will be delighted that you’ve contacted them, and you can always just ask them outright if they have a specific email you can contact about a collaboration. Instagram is great because you can ALWAYS private message a brand, whereas on Twitter you might hit the ‘they don’t follow you back’ situation.
AND WHAT THE HELL AM I SUPPOSED TO SAY?
So this is the bit that most people are unsure about – what do you say in emails to brands, and how do you make yourself stand out? Here are my top tips!
- INTRODUCE YOU AND YOUR BLOG. Say who you are, what your blog is and a few facts about your blog – maybe how long you’ve been blogging, what categories you cover and stuff like that. Keep it short, they don’t want your life story!
- WHY ARE YOU CONTACTING. Are you looking for a collaboration? Tell them! Say you came across their brand and that you think it would make a great fit with your blog. If you do outfit posts, tell them you’d love to wear a piece of their clothing, or if you do beauty reviews, tell them you’d love to review something.
- DO YOUR BRAND RESEARCH. Get to grips with the brand. If you see a certain item/product you like, tell them and say what you like about it. If they have a brand ‘ethos’ then say why it resonates really well with you. Don’t be a total cringe-ball, but showing you actually spent time on their site will prove you didn’t just email for free stuff.
- DO YOU HAVE SIMILAR POSTS? If you’re after a product to review, send them a link to a similar post you’ve done in the past, so they know what sorta thing they’ll get in return.
- YOUR STATISTICS. Let them know what you can offer them, after all, it’s a two-way street. Tell them about your social media and your average views, or even better, send them a media pack. (If you’re not sure about what a media pack is, it’s just a document with a load of info about you. You just put a few example images in and your statistics, and don’t worry, I made mine in Powerpoint…). The best things to say in the email are how many views you get on your blog per month, how many comments you get per post and your combined social media following. It’s not ALL about numbers, but if they see your posts have good engagement then they’ll take that into consideration.
- OTHER THINGS YOU’LL OFFER. You’re almost trying to sell yourself to the brand. Tell them with brand collaborations you always include links to their website, along with 2 or 3 Instagram posts and at least 5 tweets (for example). By actually telling them what you’ll do they’ll actually realise how much goes into the blogging process and that they’ll get plenty in return for giving you products/payment.
- SIGN IT OFF. Write down all of your social media links and let them know they can check them out if they want to see more of what you do. Add personality, plus an exclamation mark always makes things a little bit less dull. Don’t worry about it being MEGA formal, sure it’s got to be professional-ish, but it can also be a bit fun and chatty.
I think when approaching brands it’s very easy to be a bit p*ssed off if you get no reply, but I think once you put things into perspective, not all brands work with bloggers, and some already have enough in their campaigns. Don’t be disappointed if brands say no, because you won’t get anything if you don’t ask once in a while. The more you enquire about opportunities, the more likely you’ll find a fab fit with a brand.
I really hope some of you found this useful, if you have any questions feel free to give me a comment below and I’ll get straight back to you!