If you are just getting started on your journey to Instagram influencer status, you know the end goal is to secure brand partnerships, but you may not necessarily know how to get there. While some influencers want to buy Instagram likes cheap, there are more legitimate ways to secure a brand partnership. We have a basic six-step guide for you to follow.
1 Build Your Following
Without followers, your Instagram won’t be appealing to brands. You don’t have to become a megastar to attract their attention, though. Nano-influencers often have as few as 1,000 followers and have been able to secure partnerships. Micro-influencers are those with fewer than 100,000 followers. It will take time to build the right kind of following, but you can do it. Focus on quality content that your audience wants. To make sure you’re doing that, create and brand your Instagram in such a way that it attracts the attention of the people you want to follow you. That means if you want to break into health and fitness, you’ll need to see what others in the space are doing and look for ways you can be different and better. Use all the tools at your disposal to help grow your following – from automation, hashtags, contests, to using other social media channels, to offline methods. Keep producing quality content consistently, and it will grow naturally.
2 Create Your Media Kit
A media or press kit gives brands a quick way to see your stats to determine if they would consider a partnership with you. It should include:
- All your social media stats, not just Instagram: Number of followers, engagement rate.
- Audience demographics: Age group, gender, niche interests, country, etc.
- Website statistics: Include this if you have a blog or website you promote on social media.
- Testimonials from previous brands you’ve worked with if you have them.
- Short introduction about who you are
- Contact details
- Collaboration options
Design it well. If you’re not experienced, consider paying someone to do it for you. You can find several templates available online to help you get started. And you can use free graphics tools like Canva to create a professional look. Keep your media kit up to date, updating it quarterly, or any time there is a major change in your stats.
3 Pitch Brands for Partnerships
According to ViralRace, create a list of brands you want to work with, or brands that make sense for your audience. Find their contact information. Craft a personalized pitch for each of them and include your media kit with the pitch. If you use a generalized template, it makes your message look spammy and won’t increase your chances of getting a response. To keep yourself organized, create a spreadsheet that lists all the brands you want to work with, and the status of any pitches you’ve sent. This way, you’ll be better equipped to follow up should you not receive a timely response.
4 Join Influencer Marketing Platforms
Instead of constantly pitching brands you may want to work with, you can join various influencer platforms to let brands know you’re interested. Brands use these to find influencers to work with often, so this is a good way to let the partnerships come to you.
As you sign up for these platforms, pay attention to any specific rules you must follow. Many of them work with influencers across all social channels, so if you have a following outside of Instagram, you may be able to open yourself up to other campaigns. Always take the time to completely and thoroughly complete your profile. The more information you provide there, the easier it will be to match you with campaigns that could be a good fit for you and your audience. Remember, brands only want to work with influencers who have audiences that make sense for their brand.
5 Keep Engaging Your Audience
While you are looking for brand partnerships to share with your audience, the important thing to do is to keep producing what they want. If you get so busy trying to find sponsorships to earn some money from your efforts and let your Instagram activity slip; as a result, it could harm your chances of securing a partnership. It will disrupt your following and engagement, too. No matter what you’re doing in terms of sponsors and partnerships, your audience must remain front and center. If you lose sight of that, you’ll struggle to regain the ground you lose.
6 Sign a Contract
When you’ve found a brand that wants to work with you, make sure all your duties and responsibilities, along with deliverables, timelines, and payment details are outlined in a contract. When you’re okay with those details, sign the contract to protect yourself and the brand. Follow the rules of the contract and do well on the campaign to keep the brand happy and increase the chance that they will work with you again in the future.
Brand partnerships won’t happen overnight, and many of them won’t make you rich. It’s essential to strike a balance between partnerships to keep your audience happy. If all you ever post is sponsored content, people will start to become annoyed with you. Be selective about the brands you work with because if your followers aren’t happy, the entire business model flops, and you won’t be able to leverage your influencer status to earn an income.