I’m no blogging expert. I definitely don’t know what makes me think I’m in a place to be writing this post. However, for the past few years of writing this old blog I’ve worked with some amazing brands on lot’s of different types of content and have gotten an idea of the ropes. So thought I’d share my own little guide to working with brands as a blogger. As we all know how the world of content can be a tricky one. Finding collaboration opportunities and working with brands as a blogger can seem a bit of a maze. But here I am to try and waffle my way around it for you.
FINDING COLLABORATION OPPORTUNITIES
There are so many platforms around nowadays which promise to partner you up with brands. These can be found with a quick google search or peruse on Instagram. Some of these, are great. Others, not so much. So it’s knowing which ones actually work before you put your email down willy-nilly and getting an abundance of newsletters and random articles. So before you sign up check out their socials and testimonials.
I have mixed feelings about this one. The #BloggersWanted tag on Twitter used to be the hot spot for PR’s and brands looking for bloggers, but nowadays can just be a place for people to promote themselves. However, you can still get some good opportunities on there. So definitely still give it a look every now and then.
There are also plenty of Facebook groups for bloggers of all niches which have blogging opportunities coming in on the daily. UK Influencer Opportunities and Official UK Bloggers are great ones – but opportunities fill up with comments quickly due to the vast number of members. The Creative Gal Gang, although isn’t solely for opportunities has some good ones pop up from time to time, and is also a great group to network!
There are sooo many apps which connect you with brands nowadays. And most of the ones I’ve checked out are pretty good for getting social media collabs. However the top ones I’d recommend are Tribe, Vamp and Buzzoole. Just make sure you’re not underselling yourself as I know some apps can try and pay you some weird rates!
Last, but not least. Pitching. I think creating more of a business mindset for myself and directly emailing brands and PRs has gotten me most of my collaborations. I won’t go too much into it, but keep it short, sweet and to the point. Just introduce yourself, your blog and your social media and then give some ideas of content you could make for them. Showing what you could create for the brand has more of a personal feel. Rather than just instantly chucking stats in their face. But then you can just attach your media kit so they can see a litte more information and you’re good to go! Some people like to pop a few stats in but I’ve also been told by some PR friends, they prefer to look at you and your platforms to see if you’ll fit before considering stats. So if they want to hear more, they’ll head to your media kit or just ask. Remember, they probably get plenty of emails just like yours will be so it needs to be easy to read. And 9 times out of 10 they won’t get back to you. But don’t worry you can always give it another go a few months later!
Likewise, if a brand emails you, don’t feel like you can’t bring up payment. I always just reply asking what they’re budget is and sometimes they’ll say no. Which is fine, but then you just have to decide if it’s worth working for free. But if they say yes you can go from there and discuss your rates.
DO I NEED A MEDIA KIT?
To sum it up – yes. If you don’t know what a media kit is, it’s essential a CV for your blog. A document to give all the information and statistics on your blog. And if you’re thinking of taking your blog to the next level, you’ll need a media kit. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy, just a little bit about you and your blog, your stats, some previous brands you’ve worked for and you can also include your price list if you want. I made mine in photoshop, but you can always use Canva which is completely free and has some great premade designs. And a media kit just helps keeps your emails short and to the point.
HOW MUCH SHOULD I CHARGE?
Rates are a bit of a grey area, especially as there’s so many people undercharging and not many people talking about rates. But I think it just takes looking at your stats and your content and also the amount of time it takes you to create a post. When I got my first sponsored post, I had no clue what I should be charging. I think it was around £60, which for the point I was at was very reasonable. And I’m definitely not a huge blogger now, but to give you an idea I tend to charge £90-120 for a sponsored post. It just depends on how much photography and time is required.
Sometimes, a brand will set you a budget. Which brings up the question, when should I accept less? And that’s just up to you. Never accept just any post. But if your work schedule allows it, and it’s a company that fits well with you’re blog, it could be okay. Just don’t go accepting anything under £50, no matter your stats.
SHOULD I WORK FOR FREE?
This is a tricky one. And there are a few factors to consider. It’s always good to build a good relationship with a brand, so sometimes they require you to do a gifted collab before they’ll pay you. So just think, is this a brand you really want to work with, and how much work they’re asking you to do. Because they can get cheeky and expect you do to so much for a lipstick! And although products aren’t exactly income, you can consider whether what they are offering is substantial payment. Which is more for you to decide if it’s worth the work.
Like I’ve said, I’m no expert, but I wanted to give my thoughts on this as I get a few questions from time to time. And it can be so hard to get your head around it all!