Has your influencer outreach yielded less than desirable results and responses? Are you struggling to get any response from influencers, let alone a “yes” to working with your brand? Perhaps you’re going about pitching to content creators the wrong way. After years of working with influencers and writing hundreds of thousands of outreach emails, we can help.
Why the Right Pitch is Crucial
First impressions are important for any relationship. Even Harvard has said it can take up to eight positive encounters to change one negative experience. Your influencer pitch is your brand’s only chance to make a lasting first impression, so it needs to land well and set the right tone to create a mutually-beneficial relationship with influencers.
The right pitch introduces your brand to creators you want to work with while recognizing their previous work and content. It should also be personalized and give the influencers all of the information about your brand in a succinct way. Don’t miss out on a great partnership because your pitch doesn’t follow best practices.
Ensure You Have the Right Influencers
The first thing you need to do before pitching influencers is to make sure that you’re reaching out to the right influencers. This means your list of influencers should be both a contextual fit and a numerical fit, as explained in the below guide.
- Content Topics: Review the influencers’ feeds across their social channels to determine their content topics. Some influencers will focus on one topic, such as beauty or food, while others will create content focused on a variety of topics. Picture your brand in their feed. Would it make sense to be featured given their expertise?
- Tone: Just as some brands are irreverent and bold, while others are approachable and open, content creators will have their own tone and personality. While they don’t need to match exactly, brands should work with influencers whose voices complement their own.
- Look & Feel: In influencer marketing, looks are important. We recommend brands review influencer’s work and their feeds to make sure that they produce high-quality content that is both eye-catching and engaging.
- Existing Partnerships: In some cases, it may be valuable to understand which brands a creator is already partnering with and if any are competitors of your brand. Some influencers may have an exclusivity agreement with brands that prevent them from working with you, or perhaps your brand requires exclusivity.
- Demographic Fit: Consider how gender, age, location, and other demographic criteria will impact your influencer selection. Influencers’ audiences should both mimic and represent the demographics of your target consumer.
- Following: Don’t assume more followers automatically means it’s a better partnership fit. There are many factors that lead to great partnerships, however, you should always analyze the influencer’s audience size since they do represent your target consumer.
- CPE, CPM, Engagement Rate (or any historical performance benchmarks): When you work in a platform like Mavrck, you have access to historical performance data to help guide your influencer selection. Make sure you’re partnering with a content creator who will help you achieve your campaign’s KPIs and goals.
- Payment: It’s important to determine whether or not working with the content creator fits into your overall campaign budget. Use your outreach email to understand their payment rate given your requested content deliverables, then negotiate with them as needed.
Do Work Ahead of Time to Enhance Your Outreach
If you haven’t guessed it by now, it can take a lot of work to pitch influencers in the best way to create a positive, lasting impression. But we assure you, it’s worth it. There are some actions you can take before reaching out to influencers that will help ensure a higher response rate. Here are the steps that we recommend brands do:
- Follow the influencers on their social channels
- Engage with their content
- Share their posts on social media and tag them
These items will help influencers familiarize themselves with your brand before you pitch to them and thus allow you to achieve higher interest. In addition, these steps will support your brand’s intention of forming meaningful relationships instead of having just a transactional exchange with content creators.
Some influencers receive hundreds of pitches per day from brands, so it’s important your outreach is short and concise while being unique to successfully grab the influencer’s attention. Here are the most important pieces to include in your outreach email to help you garner responses and establish strong partnerships with creators.
Make your subject line stand out in order to get influencers to open your email and learn more about your collaboration. Subject lines that are direct and specify the campaign plus brand opportunity are best. Instead of a click-bait type phrase, be explicit about the opportunity and the brand. For example, “New Campaign Opportunity with XYZ Brand” is a great option. Notice that it is to the point and if an influencer is accepting/looking for new brand partnerships, they’ll likely want to open your email.
When possible, it’s important to personalize your outreach so that the influencer doesn’t feel like they’re part of a list and that you’re sending the same email to every creator. You should be selecting influencers based on how well they fit with your brand, including how well their audience aligns with your target consumer. What better way to show them you did your homework than to mention why you selected them? Consider adding why you love their content, what drew you to their feed, or any other personalized information that shows you’re specifically interested in them and their expertise.
Before the influencer accepts your sponsored opportunity, they will need to understand the details of the collaboration and campaign requirements. We recommend breaking your outreach email into these key parts while asking yourself the questions below.
- Project Ask: What social platforms are you wanting influencers to create content on? How many pieces of content are required? Are any of the asks optional versus required? Clearly state all of your content requirements along with your campaign goals so they can get a better understanding of them upfront when making their decision to potentially partner with you.
- Project Timeline: When does the content need to go live? Is draft approval needed beforehand? How long is the duration of the partnership? These are all very important details for creators to know so that they can reference their content calendars to determine if they have the time and are able to work on a new collaboration with your brand.
- Project Compensation or Rate Request: How will you be compensating influencers? When will they receive payment? Are you offering a specific dollar amount or asking for them to submit their rates based on the collaboration requirements? However you are paying influencers, it’s important to be clear from the start so they know what to expect, when to expect it and how much to expect.
Focus on creating the best pitch to the right influencers so that you can form strong, mutually-beneficial partnerships with content creators. Pitching influencers the best way means crafting direct subject lines, personalizing your outreach, and giving influencers all of the details about your brand and campaign. Don’t forget to take time beforehand to make sure you’re targeting the right influencers and engaging with them ahead of time. When you do all of this, you’ll be able to kick off your partnerships on a strong footing while setting your brand apart and building long-lasting relationships with content creators.
For more information on how to activate influencers, check out this blog post on activating content creators at scale.