When you see YouTubers who have lucrative sponsorships from big brands, do you ever wonder, “How did they do that?” Well, with very few exceptions, brands partner with vloggers just like you. They didn’t “get discovered” by accident, and they weren’t “just lucky.”
The big secret to getting a sponsorship really is to, “Just ask.” That said, just like anything else, there’s a right way and a wrong way to ask for sponsorship. So, let’s talk about how you can find sponsors and approach them for your YouTube channel.
Start by Identifying Your Audience
Before you go searching for sponsors, you have to first take a look at your audience. How old are they? What fashion trends do they follow? Where do they shop? Which brands do they love? What products are they interested in purchasing? Answer these questions, and you’ll have a good starting point for which types of brands to start approaching for a sponsorship.
Understand that sponsorship is a two-way street. You get paid in cash and/or products, and your sponsor gets exposure, good reviews, etc. with an audience that’s likely to buy their products.
Determine What You Can Offer to Brands
Any brand you approach is going to want to know what you’re going to do for them in return for a sponsorship. Will you give in-video shout-outs or mentions? Will you do product reviews of different products that they make? How will you be marketing their brand?
During this process, you may want to set up several tiers of sponsorship. For example, you may be willing to review products in exchange for getting them for free from the brand, but you will not guarantee a positive review if the product doesn’t work the way it’s advertised.
You may be willing to give exposure in your videos, and on your social media pages for a certain amount of money, and for a higher payment, you might sign a contract to use their products exclusively, for example.
The potential is unlimited. It’s best to create different sponsorship plans at different price points that provide value. Each sponsorship plan or level for your YouTube channel can include different or additional methods of promotion for the brand.
Do Some Research
Once you’ve determined the types of brands and businesses that your audience finds relevant and you have a good idea of what you can offer them, do some research on a few of those brands. And don’t just look for the big-name brands, either. Look for smaller, startup brands that make quality products that your fans and viewers would be interested in.
As you do your brand research, look specifically for brands that you think could really benefit from sponsoring your YouTube channel and videos. Are they new and looking to widen their reach? Are they an established brand with one demographic but looking to expand into another (specifically, one made up of your audience)? You’ll use this information when you make your proposal for a sponsorship.
Create Quality Sponsorship Proposals
First of all, do not under any circumstances write a single form letter and do nothing more than change the name of the company. They receive proposals for sponsorships all the time, and they are well trained in spotting form letters quickly.
If you write a personalized sponsorship proposal letter for each of the companies you approach, they will notice and take you more seriously. In this letter, be sure to properly introduce yourself and give a good description of your content and how a sponsorship can benefit them, as well. Be as specific as possible, and show them that you have a plan to make their sponsorship a successful endeavor for both you and them.
Start Reaching Out to Brands
Once you’ve chosen the companies you want to approach for sponsorship and you’ve written at least the first draft(s) of your proposal(s), it’s time to start reaching out to them. Go to their websites and check out their “Contact Us” pages. Take a look through their links, as well, to see if they have an established process for approaching them for sponsorship. If not, just write to the most relevant email address on the contact page and go from there.
In addition to researching and approaching individual brands, you can also check out one of several sponsorship platforms, as well. For example, if you have 5,000 subscribers or more, FameBit will help connect you with brands interested in working with YouTubers through their sponsorship platform.
Four Important Sponsorship Tips for Vloggers
As you reach out and try to find sponsors for your YouTube channel, keep these tips in mind, as well:
Make it about them – They already know that a sponsorship can help you. Tell them how sponsoring you can help their brand.
Don’t sell yourself short – You have a following. You create quality content. You can help a brand by giving them more exposure to your audience. Don’t minimize any of that.
Keep trying – You may not get a sponsorship with your first proposal or even with your fifth. Keep trying, and keep growing your YouTube channel. The bigger your following, the easier it will be to find sponsorships.
Do you believe in this brand? – Don’t reach out to a brand you don’t believe in or don’t like. Remember, if they agree to sponsor you, you have to agree to help them, and you do not want to agree to help a brand that makes inferior products or uses bad business practices.
With these tips in mind, you should be on your way to getting a sponsorship to help monetize your YouTube channel. When you do get sponsorship, remember to be open and honest about it. Your viewers will appreciate it, and you’ll be able to do product reviews and feature your sponsor’s brand without any guilt or ethical questions.
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