How to Approach Brands as an Influencer — Quick Guide

Influencer Brand Deals

September 12, 2021

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Hey! In today’s post I’m sharing the answer to the questions, “Can you tell me how to approach brands as an influencer?” as well as another popular question I receive from influencers in the community, and that is:

  • Can you tell me how to DM brands on Instagram to get paid brand collabs? 

So if you’re wondering the same thing, you’re in the right place! 

Keep reading, or watch on YouTube!

How to Approach Brands as an Influencer

But you may be surprised by my answer. So let’s get straight to the point. By now I’m sure you’re aware that pitching brands via email is one of the smartest things an influencer can do to land paid brand deals. But did you know that sending them a DM on social media could actually be detrimental to your success? 

By the way, if you’re new here — welcome! If you’d like to learn how you can join our influencer community, make sure to click this link to our private influencer community, and if you’d like to gain (unlimited) access to all of our influencer eCourses, live webinars, member’s lounge and Q&A forum click this link to view our Member’s Area.

Ok, so back to the video — so if you’re wondering how to DM brands on Instagram, that’s totally fine, but just be aware that Instagram DM’s are not always the best place to well…do business. And let’s face it, if you’re partnering with a brand to promote their products, that is a business transaction! So, wherever you can, try not to DM brands on Instagram regarding brand deals.

And, there’s a couple reasons for this. First, brands frequently mention that influencers are sending them DM’s on Instagram, Twitter and other social media platforms requesting to connect, and some are even pitching them via DM. And they’re quite honestly not thrilled about it. 

Are you one of them? If so, again, you may want to re-think this strategy. 

Why? Because it’s just not very professional, and let’s be real – you want your first impression to be 100% positive! 

SO…if you’re serious about earning an income working with brands, you need to always (always) strive to act professionally! Regardless if you’re posting new photos, stories, video’s OR reaching out to brands to introduce yourself.

Professionalism goes a long way in this industry! And, the influencers who put a lot of time, and thought and consideration into their brand outreach… and strive to connect with brands on the platform they do business on everyday (meaning. email + phone) are typically the ones who get noticed — and get the best brand deals!

SO…Think about it, how often do you reply to (or even acknowledge) the brands that leave comments on your posts to “send us a DM to collaborate”? 

Or, how often do you reply to the DM’s from brands that are clearly spam? If your answer is “never”, that’s understandable!

Now think about it from a brand’s viewpoint. Do you want your first impression on a brand to be unprofessional? Or for a brand to view you as spammy? Probably not!

How to Approach Brands as an Influencer

SO, if you’re hoping to really impress them, and get those high paying collabs, I strongly suggest taking the time to send them an email. And, no — not to their general inbox! Instead, I suggest sending it directly to their marketing manager, their influencer manager, heck even their PR team

These are the people who are working behind the scenes to create influencer campaigns -— not the social media manager behind their DM’s!

Now, if for some reason you can’t find the brand’s marketing manager’s direct email address anywhere, then and only then, I suggest you send them a DM. However, please be as professional as possible and simply request the name and email of their marketing manager so that you can pitch them via email.

On a side note, I included a pre-written pitch that you can use in this scenario inside the Resource Library, in the Member’s Area, so I definitely recommend using it because there is very specific language in that pitch that you need to use for this strategy to work well.

Otherwise, keep in mind that a brand’s direct messages on social media is a place for their customer’s to inquire about products, not an ideal place to do business.

Now, if you’re confused as to where, exactly, to locate the brand’s employee’s names and accurate emails, make sure to enroll in the Member’s Area and take Course 8 — The Secret Formula to Pitching Brands, to discover the software we use daily to find this info in a matter of seconds because that tool will save you a TON of time!

Just remember, brands are in the business of marketing their products, and they’re searching for influencers who can help them achieve their sales goals! Given that brands are earning $6.50 for every $1.00 spent on influencer marketing, trust me — they’re prepared to pay you well.

So do your best to make an unforgettable impression because every time you present yourself professionally you significantly improve your chances of landing the best brand deals!

Protect YOUR Brand

OK, onto the next reason that I don’t encourage influencers to DM brands on Instagram is that DM’s are NOT (in my knowledge) legally binding contracts. Emails, on the other hand, ARE. So, worst case scenario, you and a brand are discussing a brand deal within your DM’s on Instagram, and you agree to a brand deal, post the content and the day comes to get paid and the brand never sends a payment, well — you may be out of luck.

Or, say you and a brand are discussing a brand deal via DM’s and you agree to create all kinds of content, spend weeks preparing it, are ready to post and they “change their minds’…again, you may be out of luck.

If you had discussed everything via email however, to my knowledge that would be legally binding, so take that into consideration!

OK, now with that said, if going forward for some reason, you and a brand are discussing a potential brand deal via DM’s… I recommend suggesting you pivot the conversation to email, just to protect yourself and your brand in the rare event that something changes last minute.

how to approach brands as an influencer

Hopefully that makes sense! Let me know in the comments below if you have any questions about how to approach brands as an influencer. 

Now, on strategy that would help prevent any discusions from every happening in DM”s is by investing in landing pages software, like LeadPages, in order to create a “Contact Form” for brands that are interested in working with you. You can then link to it in your bio and in this situation, they would enter their information, and then YOU would get an email notifying you that a brand is interested in a partnership, and can from there email them so discuss the details. 

How to Approach Brands as an Influencer

I’ll leave a link to LeadPages below this post, in case you want to set something like that up!

I personally used LeadPages as a food blogger and received all lot of brand partnerships requests this way, so I highly recommend it. Plus, if you do so you’ll then have a list of contacts that you can reach out to for future brand deals at your fingertips.

OK that’s it for today’s post! If you have any further questions regarding how to approach brands as an influencer, please leave them in the comments below. Also, I recommend checking out the blog post I wrote called “How To Get Paid Brand Deals” next!

Links I Mentioned In This Post:

  • Set Up a Landing Page to Collect Brand “Leads” — Leadpages
how to approach brands as an influencer

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