How to Collaborate With Brands: a Guide for Influencers (2023)

Influencer marketing has been rocking the online world for some time now. While product placements or sponsored posts no longer come as a surprise, not everyone knows the story behind each and every collaboration. And the story begins with the idea for a campaign but continues with choosing and verifying the best influencers.

If you are only starting out with influencer marketing, then it is likely that you haven’t cracked it quite yet. We’ve decided to help you out a bit, showing which factors of a marketing campaign are crucial and how you can get into collaborating with brands. If you want to build a solid influencer brand, you should get familiar with this short guide.

Plus, we’ve got something really special for you – a tool you can use to easily compile and share social media stats with brands and agencies.

What influencers are brands looking for?

For brands, credibility is crucial.

There is a difference between statistics that matter and vanity metrics. What are some examples of vanity metrics, though? The most common ones are Page likes or follower count. Brands are getting aware that the fact that someone has a million followers and a 0.02% engagement rate is a red flag.

Brands are looking for authenticity and influencers they can trust in terms of effective campaigns. If you feel that you deliver value to your following and attract an engaged target audience around your profiles, and that your social accounts are not oversaturated with sponsored content yet, then you already fit the basic requirements of many brands. However, you still need to meet quite a few criteria before you become an influencer marketing pro. For example, you should carefully optimize your presence in search results as some brands find influencers by scraping Google.

Common mistakes in influencer marketing

There are a few common mistakes that both brands and influencers make that can impact the outcome of influencer marketing campaigns.

A lack of mutual understanding

Effective influencer marketing is about understanding the needs of the target audience – both on the brand’s and the influencer’s end. Everyone wants to win: brands want to showcase their services and meet their business objectives, influencers want to make money or get free products, and the target group wants to experience fun content that doesn’t feel like straight-up advertising.

However, meeting all of these requirements can be difficult if that understanding factor is missing.

How to Collaborate With Brands: a Guide for Influencers (1)

Understanding mutual interests is vital for influencer campaigns to be successful. Brands should not interfere with a particular influencer’s tone of voice or the feel of their social presence. Influencers, on the other hand, should make an effort to align sponsored posts with the brand’s strategy and closely follow campaign guidelines.

(Video) How To Write a Brand Collaboration Email (For Micro-Influencers!)

While this is not a walk in the park, it is not impossible either.

Insufficient monitoring and reporting

The influencer campaign you’re part of has started. Amazing! However, imagine the following scenario. It has been a week already and you don’t know if your posts are bringing in results. Content has been published, there is some promotion going on, but it’s not bringing in the desired conversions, and the target audience seems rather uninterested in your marketing activity.

And this is when a problem arises. If you have no access statistics, reports, or monitoring, getting to the source of the problem is going to be very difficult for everyone involved.

While monitoring is important throughout any campaign, influencer marketing reports are particularly important to brands – they give them access to data they can’t fetch themselves and provide insights as to whether a particular campaign’s results justify the spend. Unfortunately, many influencers do not send reports to their business partners, and many agencies still don’t ask for them, so verifying the effectiveness of influencer marketing activities is often virtually impossible.

The results can be deplorable: burning the brand’s marketing budget, putting off their target audience, damaging their brand image, or discouraging both sides from getting involved in influencer marketing in the future – just to name a few.

Notbuilding relationships

Influencer marketing means business: there’s no doubt about that. But increasingly more often, one-off sponsored posts can evolve into business relations lasting for years, if both sides are open to it.

Do not be scared of going the extra mile when it comes to influencer marketing activities. If you care about a collaboration, you should show it to the company that contracted you and create truly engaging, high-quality content for them.

How to Collaborate With Brands: a Guide for Influencers (2)

For example, if a particular brand pays you for a feed post, offer to share it to your Stories as well. If they are promoting a specific product or service, suggest adding a discount code for your audience. Be proactive. Of course, know your value, but treat these additional deliverables as an investment and the brand will most likely appreciate your efforts.

Successful collaborations with renowned brands can also attract other companies to your social media profiles while being a stable source of income. If you’re proactively looking for collaborations, you can reach out to different brands via DMs or even by sending warm-up emails to showcase your enthusiasm. In the case of emails though, you may also consider using an email finder tool to ensure you’re only spending time sending emails to verified email addresses.

You should also keep in mind that brands want to find influencers who will stay with them for longer and become their brand ambassadors on social media. However, these days it can be a struggle to find the right fit – there are simply so many great influencers out there. Below you will find a list of best practices you should follow when working with brands that will really help you stand out.

(Video) Your Guide To Negotiating Brand Deals as an Influencer 🤝

How to Collaborate With Brands: a Guide for Influencers (3)

In-depth social media reports

Generate in-depth social media reports within seconds. Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter included. Try it for free:

Try NapoleonCat free for 14 days. No credit card required.

Working with brands – best practices

Many factors come into play when it comes to successful influencer marketing. Brands have many social media influencers to choose from, so be sure that your approach to working with brands and agencies stands out just as much as your social media accounts.

Stay creative and stand out

There are many wannabe influencers who think that featuring specific types of content or keeping a consistent tone of voice is enough to be successful. But you have to be ready to do some extra work if you want to work with brands.

For example, if you are an Instagram influencer, try to think of a way to make your account better than your competitors’. Do some research and experiment a little. Maybe instead of working on another feed post, put together a creative series of videos for your Stories? Your followers could be thrilled with something new, and you might even reach new audiences. While probably won’t get a million new followers overnight, you might see a peak in your statistics and become an interesting pick for influencer marketing requests.

Keeping an open mind is important. If you never try, you’ll never know!

Create a strategy

Before you start working with brands and featuring sponsored content on your social accounts, you should take a step back and think about what you want to achieve on social media. What’s your personal brand and strategy?

(Video) How To Pitch Brands As An Influencer + Get Paid Deals!

How to Collaborate With Brands: a Guide for Influencers (4)

Take a closer look at your social media presence. Running a social media SWOT analysis and conducting a competitive analysis (NapoleonCat’s Analytics will help you see where you stand compared to other influencers) is a great start. Recognizing your strengths and unique qualities will help you define why you’re the right fit for brands within a specific niche. Analyze your previous collaborations with brands if you’ve had any. Take a look at your target group – how receptive are they to sponsored content?

Audit your profile

Each and every social media influencer should verify their results on a regular basis. Even a single Instagram post can provide a lot of valuable insights that can potentially help you boost your engagement rates and lay the grounds for establishing relationships with a particular brand.

Can you do anything to improve your engagement rates per post? Are your “million followers” relevant to your content, or is your follower count or demographic skewed in any way? How could you potentially help a business raise its brand awareness, sales, or sign-ups through influencer marketing?

Your audit should leave you with some ideas for improving your strategy – it’s never too late to make some changes!

Have your offer ready

Let’s imagine that a big brand approaches you today, asking for social media coverage for their omnichannel retail campaign. Are you ready to give them specific, detailed information about your social media profiles and provide them with appropriate pricing?

“Old, wise influencers” say: “Always have a proposal at your disposal”. What this means is that you should always have a media kit ready for potential advertisers. Customized versions tailored to specif brands are always welcome.

How to Collaborate With Brands: a Guide for Influencers (5)

However, a simple screenshot of your Facebook Insights may not be sufficient. Brands want to work with influencers who are professional from day one.

Sending a professional offer or a comprehensive set of up-to-date statistics can increase your chances of being selected for a particular social media campaign.Similarly, sending unprofessional or messy materials can put off potential business partners.

Take your influencer brand to the next level with NapoleonCat

As you can see, influencer marketing is fairly complex, and influencers often need to go the extra mile to show brands that they are ready for collaborations. As a social media influencer, you need to show that you’re the right person to do the job. While promises and words say a lot, nothing speaks louder than… numbers.

This is why NapoleonCat offers Reports – a feature that allows you to create or schedule comprehensive reports for Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.


What are Reports?

The feature helps you monitor and report your social media performance, and easily share insights with existing and potential business partners. It is beneficial both for social media influencers (providing you with more control over the way your social media success is perceived by professionals) and brands (providing them with more control over the ROI of potential marketing campaigns).

You can also schedule weekly, monthly, or quarterly reports – they will be automatically created and sent out to your business partners via email.

How can Reports help influencers?

  • With professional reports, you can validate your social media statistics and look more trustworthy in the eyes of brands.
  • You can schedule your reports so that they will be sent out automatically, so you can give your business partners (brands or agencies) easy access to up-to-date info on specific sponsored posts or an entire influencer marketing campaign.
  • The tool allows you to share relevant statistics from various social media platforms and content types: Facebook posts, Instagram Stories, Instagram posts, and Tweets.
  • They make your influencer brand stronger and showcase your professionalism. In the reports,the data is presented in an appealing way and can once and for all successfully replace messy screenshots and PPTX files.

How can Reports help brands and agencies?

  • With Reports, brands can easily verify social media influencers, filter out those who would not add any value to their planned influencer marketing campaigns, and validate their choices.
  • Reports give brands unique access to detailed data, the accuracy of which is guaranteed by NapoleonCat, an official Facebook Business Partner.
  • Without access to in-depth insights, brands and agencies can struggle with evaluating influencers. For example, Instagram gradually getting rid of the public like count made assessing the engagement on influencers’ Instagram accounts very difficult. Reports make influencer marketing verification hassle-free.

If you’d like to see how the Reports work in action, check out the video below:

Key takeaways

  1. Influencer marketing strategies are effective when planned, analyzed, and reported correctly. Both brands and influencers still make mistakes that put campaigns – and the good name of influencer marketing in general – at risk.
  2. Influencers should stay true to their creative expression while making sure they understand the needs of brands and agencies.
  3. In influencer marketing, content matters a lot, but there are more factors that contribute to success. For brands, influencers are not merely content creators – they are ambassadors.
  4. With NapoleonCat’s Reports, evaluating the potential value of social media influencers and their real reach is easier than ever before. Give it a go!
How to Collaborate With Brands: a Guide for Influencers (7)

In-depth Social Media Analytics

Measure your marketing results on Instagram and other platforms. Track competitors and improve performance using one simple tool. Try it for free:

Try NapoleonCat free for 14 days. No credit card required.

(Video) How to Collaborate With Influencers - An Easy Guide to Get Started


How do you start collaborating with brands? ›

How to Reach Out and Collab with Brands
  1. Build your portfolio. We all have to start from somewhere. ...
  2. Do your research. Some people like to set their portfolio up and wait for brands to come to them. ...
  3. Show off! Okay, not in a bragging way, but let them know how you stand apart from the others! ...
  4. Go! Push that send button!
12 Oct 2022

How do you respond to brands as an influencer? ›

Thank you so much for reaching out. I'd love to discuss a collaboration and agree we are a good fit. I have some ideas but I'd like to hear from you what your brand needs right now as far as content goes. I look forward to working together!

How do you collaborate with influencers 2022? ›

How to collaborate with influencers in 2022?
  1. Investigate. ...
  2. Keep an open mind towards new ideas. ...
  3. Create a win-win profitable platform. ...
  4. Collaborating with influencers generate a targeted-consumer base for your brand. ...
  5. Make influencers your brand ambassadors. ...
  6. Motivate influencers to make contests and create new campaigns.
21 May 2022

How do brands pay influencers? ›

There are 6 types of influencer payments and incentives for creators: Cash, Branded Rewards, VIP Experiences, Exclusive Access, Promo Codes, and Product Gifting. While cash is the most desired form of payment for an influencer fee, there is no specific incentive that is inherently better than the others.

How do I contact brands for collaboration on Instagram? ›

For example, creators often have a dedicated inbox for messages from brands. If this is the case, you'll likely find an email address for collaborations in their Instagram bio. You might also find their preferred form of contact in their bio link (via Linkt. ree or Linkin.

What to ask before collaborating with a brand? ›

Questions to Ask Influencers Before Collaborating
  • How do you engage with your followers? ...
  • Which social media platforms are you active on? ...
  • Have you ever created content for a niche similar to ours? ...
  • What content type do you prefer? ...
  • Can they give reports of their past campaigns? ...
  • What is your target audience?

How do you ask for collaboration? ›

I'm [name] from [company name]. I sent you an email [period] that I think could benefit us if we partner. I've come across your work and enjoyed it [maybe mention one particular project]. I thought you would be interested in partnering for this project because [give reasons].

How do you write a brand collaboration proposal? ›

A brand collaboration proposal is often required to finalize your influencer campaign.
Send Your Proposal
  1. Keep it to 2-3 pages, turn it into a PDF, and attach it to an email.
  2. Include a brief message.
  3. Offer to be flexible with the deliverables.
  4. Follow up a week after you send it, if you haven't heard back.
15 May 2020

How do you negotiate with brands as an influencer template? ›

Top 10 Influencer Negotiation Tips
  1. Be specific on content. ...
  2. Discuss content usage rights. ...
  3. Keep repurposed content in mind. ...
  4. Prepare for contingencies. ...
  5. Talk about brand exclusivity. ...
  6. Ensure non-disclosure. ...
  7. Define engagement expectations.

How do you send a collab DM? ›

Generic Collab DM Template

Hey [insert influencer name], The team and I loved your post about [insert description of related post]. At [insert company name here] we [insert what you do/sell]. We'd love to send some your way so you can give it a try and share with your audience!

How can I be a successful influencer? ›

How to Become an Instagram Influencer
  1. Identify Your Niche and Content Pillars.
  2. Master Short Form Video Content.
  3. Be Consistent.
  4. Write Meaningful Captions.
  5. Focus on Building Community.
  6. Learn About Your Audience.
  7. Optimize Your Bio and Profile.
  8. Build Your Network and Nail Your Brand Pitch.
20 Apr 2021

How do you collab with micro influencers? ›

Now, here are four ways to use these micro-influencers to gain more customers.
  1. Use Campaign-Specific Hashtags. Campaign-specific hashtags are one of the best ways to spread brand awareness and drive sales. ...
  2. Leverage User-Generated Content. ...
  3. Create Sponsored Posts. ...
  4. Tell a Story With Your Promotion.

How much does 1k followers make on Instagram? ›

Micro-influencers (between 1,000 and 10,000 followers) make an average $1,420 per month.

What brands pay influencers the most? ›

This means influencers are getting paid to create testimonials, ads, unboxings, and more for their favorite brands and products.
Brands That Pay Influencers
  1. Fabletics. ...
  2. Fashion Nova. ...
  3. Flat Tummy Co. ...
  4. Goli Gummy. ...
  5. Lululemon. ...
  6. Amazon Fashion. ...
  7. Walmart. ...
  8. PrettyLittleThing.
16 May 2022

What should I charge as an influencer? ›

Instagram influencer pricing
  • Nano influencers (1000 - 10,000 followers): $10 - $100 per post.
  • Micro influencers (10,000 - 50,000 followers): $100 - $500 per post.
  • Mid-tier influencers (50,000 - 500,000 followers): $500 - $5,000 per post.
  • Macro influencers (500,000 - 1,000,000 followers): $5000 - $10,000 per post.
16 Aug 2022

How do you collab with a celebrity? ›

Using The Handbook celebrity and influencer database email or ring the correct representative with a clear, concise and well thought-out case, stating how you would like the celebrity to get involved with your offering. The best way to contact the celebrity is by emailing the celebrity representative.

How do you approach someone for collaboration? ›

There are five steps you can follow to achieve successful collaboration:
  1. Define your purpose.
  2. Choose open or closed collaboration.
  3. Involve the right people.
  4. Achieve "buy-in."
  5. Encourage collaborative behavior.

How do I approach a celebrity for collaboration on Instagram? ›

Most likely, you'll find them on their social media profiles or their website. Sometimes you may have to fill out a form with info about your brand and why you're interested in a collaboration. At other times, a direct message on Instagram may also work. It really depends on the influencer's preferences.

How do I partner with influencers on Instagram? ›

Strategies to Perform Influencer Outreach
  1. Set a clear goal.
  2. Learn from existing brands and influencer marketing campaigns.
  3. Create a plan of action.
  4. Identify the best social media influencer for your brand.
  5. Build real relationships with influencers.
  6. Decide how the partnership works.
23 Aug 2022

How do you ask for collaboration on Instagram? ›

In the bottom right corner, you'll see an option to “Invite Collaborator.” After tapping, search and choose the user you'd like to collaborate with. After you've chosen your collaborator, share the post as usual, and the creator will receive a request in their DMs.

How do you get a celebrity to sponsor you? ›

How to Get Celebrity Endorsements
  1. Figure out your budget. Deciding how much you're looking to spend should be determined before you go ahead with an endorsement. ...
  2. Know your target audience. ...
  3. Find celebrities who can show a passion for your brand. ...
  4. Consider micro-influencers.
23 Jan 2020

How do I send a message to brands for collaboration? ›

Hello [Brand Name], My name is [Your Name] and I am a content creator/marketer who specializes in social media marketing. I recently came across your brand and was really impressed by the work that you do. I think that our skill sets would be a great match for working together on a project.

How do I contact a company for collaboration? ›

Let me break down four methods you can try to hunt down the correct email address for a brand collaboration.
  1. Contact Us Page. Visit the brand's website and find their Contact Us page. ...
  2. Email Button on Instagram. ...
  3. LinkedIn. ...
  4. Ask a Fellow Creator.
29 Jun 2020

How do I partner with Instagram brands? ›

Add the paid partnership label to Instagram Stories:
  1. After you have chosen your photo or video, tap the tag icon at the top of the screen.
  2. Tap to toggle on Add paid partnership label.
  3. Tap Add brand partners to add up to two brands.

How do I start working with brands on Instagram? ›

How to Get Sponsored on Instagram
  1. Define your brand.
  2. Know your audience.
  3. Post consistently.
  4. Use hashtags and geotags.
  5. Tag brands in your posts.
  6. Include contact information in your bio.
  7. Pitch paid sponsorships.
  8. Know your worth.
12 Nov 2020

How do you write a collaboration proposal? ›

How to Write a Collaboration Proposal: Marketing Secrets
  1. 1) Choose your Partners Wisely.
  2. 2) Your Title Page Matters.
  3. 3) Write, Edit & Format the Proposal.
  4. 4) Create a Milestone-Centric Collaboration Timeline.
  5. 5) Write a Complimentary Cover Letter.
  6. 6) Visual Data & Social Proof Matter.
  7. 7) Create a Table of Content.
2 Sept 2019

How do I partner with small brands? ›

Register with your local chamber of commerce and neighborhood business associations to start building a network of other entrepreneurs with whom you can potentially partner. A number of businesses have also found success in sharing products and services from other entrepreneurs on their social media accounts.

What is an influencer strategy? ›

Influencer marketing is a strategy where businesses rely on an influential leader to recommend their product to their target audience. These leaders usually have a large social following or captivate a market segment.

Who is the biggest influencer? ›

Beauty Influencers
  • Charli d'Amelio (47.7 million followers) ...
  • Zach King (24.6 million followers) ...
  • Pewdiepie (21.8 million followers) ...
  • David Dobrik (12.3 million followers) ...
  • AuronPlay (17.5 million followers) ...
  • Ajey Nagar (14.9 million followers) ...
  • Cameron Dallas (23.8 million followers) ...
  • Lele Pons (48.9 million followers)
12 Oct 2022


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