Let’s talk about working with brands and specifically when you’re in the process of putting together a quote.
Know your worth
Any time you’re providing a quote to a brand, you are in a negotiation. For many people, this can be a scary or uncomfortable circumstance. But the fact is that if you are going to be successful as a content creator and influencer, you’re going to need to become comfortable negotiating your rates. The first step to getting you comfortable is to know what you are worth. This is entirely the reason why Social Bluebook was created in the first place, but we’ll get to that later.
The best way for you to know what you are worth is to understand your selling power. How engaged is your audience? How likely are they to buy what you recommend to them? If you understand the answers to these questions, then this will be an easier process. One way you can get a sense of this is to do affiliate deals. Affiliate opportunities are deals available to anyone where you provide a unique tracking link to your audience to click on, which will allow them to purchase a product. You’ll be able to track how many people clicked the link and how many purchased. Add up how many sales you drove, and there’s a rough but pretty good indication of your selling power. But keep in mind that there is value in just driving people to a website because in many cases people don’t buy something the first time they see it. Another tactic is simply to work with a brand for free on the condition that the brand shares the data with you how your posts have performed. However, you approach this, it is critical to understand your selling power in order to know your worth as an influencer.
Format for your quote
Let’s discuss the format for your quote to the brand. Most creators and companies (creators should also think of themselves as companies) use PowerPoint decks to describe who they are and why someone should care. Included in these decks are typically flashy imagery, audience statistics & demographics, how much you charge for your services, and some past performance (what you’ve accomplished in previous deals). As much as possible, tailor your decks and quotes to the brand that you are working with. If you have past performance that is relevant to the brand you’re negotiating with, be sure to include it. Brands are as individual as the people we interact with. Be sure to treat them as such.
BEFORE you send your quote or deck off to a brand, find out what their budget is. This is important because as soon as you’ve sent your rates, you’ve just pigeon-holed yourself into those rates. This may not sound like a bad thing, but keep in mind that a brand may be willing to pay more than what you normally charge. Also, there may be additional services that you could offer (live appearances, extra social posts, etc.) that you can upsell the brand on. Just keep in mind that once you’ve set the bar on the price, it is often hard to raise it. There’s an old adage in a negotiation that “the first one to speak loses” so keep that in mind.
Each of your social media profiles have a value.
Over the years I’ve seen many creators tack on a tweet or instagram post for free when hired to do brand deal on your primary platform such as YouTube. Understand that all of your platforms have an audience and require attention & investment from you so therefore they have a value. Seek to charge a value for each social promotion that you do. Each has a cost to you so don’t feel bad about passing that cost on.
A happy customer is a repeat customer
Don’t get greedy! Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither will you become PewdiePie overnight. Always consider the needs and wants of your customer when putting together your proposal and quote. One tactic you may consider is that you don’t have to get paid handsomely on your first or first few deals. This may seem a little counterintuitive to what I’ve already written but when you’re just starting out doing brand deals or even a relationship with new brand you may consider seeking to get paid a little less than what you think you’re worth. Doing this combined with a good performance of your branded content posts will make for a very happy brand customer. Happy customers turn into repeat customers and repeat customers are easier to work with then new ones.
Be cognizant of payment terms
Understand early on the payment terms of your deal. How much will you be paid? When will you be paid? How will you be paid? Get these details upfront before you sign a contract or upload your content. Once you’ve uploaded content you’ve lost a good bit of your leverage so find out what you need to before then. Want help with contract templates? Check out the Brand Deal Accelerator course in Social Bluebook Academy.
What I’ve shared are just some of the things you’ll want to consider when you’re working with brands. Here at Social Bluebook we want to provide influencers the ultimate guide to making money and building your business. We’re seek to do this through our technology (valuations & Pro Insights), education (SBB Academy), and brand deal opportunities (Brand Deal Hub). If you found this article interesting and helpful then I’d recommend that you check out our Media Kit tool. It was developed to assist influencers in better selling themselves to brands. It provides a format for brands to view you as an influencer and can help start the negotiation process. Good luck creators!
COO, Social Bluebook
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