Passion 3 September 2015
Blog class: How to build relationships with brands

Now that ‘influencer marketing’ is on the radar of pretty much every lifestyle, fashion and food company, there are plenty of business opportunities for big and smaller blogs.

For those of us who regularly get approached by marketing and PR, blogging is partly about making amazing content, and partly about working with brands that suit your blog, your audience and your personality. A delicate balance that needs constant reviewing. So if you’re not completely altruistic and would like to make some money out of your blog and for the time and quality you put in posts it could be useful to examine how you could boost the relationships you have with brands.

To make the most out of your relationship with brands – something that really benefits you both – these are six factors to take into consideration.

Keep an eye on upcoming brands
The best way to go at this is to get a pen and a piece of paper and to write brands down that you admire. You can start with big names like Chanel or H&M, but it is probably more realistic to look at brands that are a bit smaller, but not less awesome. Usually, smaller and upcoming companies look at the blogging landscape with a fresh perspective and are less hierarchic. It often makes it easier to collaborate with them, and to build a personal connection.

Make the first move
If you’ve found these young, creative brands that you would like to work with, it is time to come with a proposal (also known as a brilliant master plan) which included different concept ideas. First of all: these proposals should be tailor made. Have a very good look at this specific brand. Know what they do, what kind of language they use, what pictures they post on their Instagram account. Ask them how they want to grow and if they’re willing to to work together. You now have a great starting point to build concepts on.

Treat a brand like a friend
As in any relationship, professional or personal, it pays off to be attentive, genuinely interested and diligent. It’s the same way with bloggers; we all like to be approached in a personal way! Make sure you build in small, personal moments by emailing updates on the project regularly. Going the extra mile with small gestures, and by staying aware of what the brand is doing, makes you stand out. In blogging, it’s not just about who has the biggest following; a big portion of the projects go to bloggers that are known to be quick, kind and professional to work with.

Visit offline events
Show companies you’re genuinely interested and you’re willing to make an effort to visit a store opening, perfume launch or the reveal of a new shoe line. At these events, mingle with PR and brand contributors. Get to know the brand on a personal level – the company will remember you more easily whenever they think of a new blogger collab.

Always deliver quality content
If you want cool brands to work with you, then step one is making sure that they are willing to do just that. That means you and your blog will be judged on the content you create. So try to write as good as you can, read a lot to improve your writing skills, always keep your eyes and ears open for new content ideas and make your pictures as pretty as can be. Sure, it sounds easy if you sum it up like this, but you have to be your own critic.

Don’t be afraid to talk money
Contrary to what people may think, it’s not a bad thing to talk about money. In the end, you’re talking business and there will be cash involved. Know when to start talking about it and keep the conversation clear and to the point. For instance, after you’ve posted about a product, write a proposal on how your relationship could be expanded and whether the company is open to talk about a larger project with an accompanied budget.

Are you blogging? What kind of subject would you like to read about in a new Blog Class? What camera to use for outfit shots, how to make a brand proposal or maybe something totally different? Let us know in the comments!

Let's talk

20 comments

    Thanks for the tips! I really want to make something of my blog this year, and I certainly need to prove some people wrong regarding what I can achieve through my blog! Working with brands is something I need to start doing to take my blog to the next level and closer to my goals, but first I need to get more confident in approaching these brands I admire :)

    http://www.yasminqureshi.co

    Great article, just what I needed! I would love to know more about how to make a good brand proposal. xxx

    Indeed great points!
    x Frederique

    http://fablefrique.com

    I love this post! Its always a bit scary to approach brands but this makes me feel better about it. Love the advice and suggestions!

    Great points, definitely important to keep communication honest and active.

    http://lifeandcity.tumblr.com

    Great article! I never really knew how to approach brands to go in that route. Thank you for sharing!

    http://www.themondayblonde.com

    Thanks so much for this advice! I had no idea it was called ‘influencer marketing’ – very cool! I am looking for smaller brands to work with; very exciting! I was just thinking: for offline events, one should have business cards ready!

    These are great tips! Thanks for sharing! I’d like to start approaching brands and this was exactly what I was needing to see today!

    Lisa B

    As a new blogger this was very insightful, thank you.

    I would love to know the best way to get started in the most cost effective way.

    https://lisaboatz.wordpress.com/

    this is very helpful, thanks for sharing!

    That’s a really straightforward and helpful post. Thank you for sharing!

    http://anitasookan.com

    Thank you for reading Anita!

    Gloria H.

    I have wanted to start a blog, but I don’t want to quick my day job. But I would like to know if blogging is a full time job or can it be something like a hobby?

    your blog classes are my favorite posts to read!

    Lovely photo :)
    BLOG M&M FASHION BITES : http://mmfashionbites.blogspot.gr/
    Maria V.

    Would love to read more about creating a great media kit. I have a tendency to add waaaay too much information (or far too little). What PR agencies need and how to stand out would be worth reading for me.
    – X Marloes

    Thank you for your input Marloes! :)

    Great and really helpful article for all of us who are thinking about taking this big step :) Thanks!

    I definitely think starting with emerging brands that relate to your blog and passions really helps – you both grow together plus it sets up a fab relationship :)

    Lauren x
    Britton Loves | Lifestyle Food Beauty

    Totally true Lauren! Having a shortlist will help you setting your goals. :)

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