In the world of social media and online content creation, influencers have become a powerful force. With millions of followers and a loyal fan base, successful influencers have the ability to shape opinions, drive sales, and create trends.
The new reality of online marketing has created a new career path for influencers who can leverage their social media accounts to create content and influence their followers.
YouTube, especially, has emerged as a popular platform for influencers to showcase their talents and engage with their audience in a video format.
For many influencers, brand deals on YouTube are a key source of income and a way to monetize their content. In this article, we will explore the key steps to finding brand deals as a YouTube influencer.
Understanding Your Niche and Audience
To understand your niche, it’s important to look at your YouTube channel and social media profiles to find common themes or topics that you cover and see which videos get the most engagement.
You can also use tools like Google Analytics to gain insights into your audience’s demographics, interests, and behavior.
Identifying your niche will help you to create content that resonates with your viewers, and this attracts brands that align with your values and interests.
Once you have identified your niche, you should create a brand identity and persona that is unique and compelling. The more this persona plays to your niche, the better, but remember that followers have an almost superhuman sense of inauthenticity.
Emphasize parts of your personality that work with your niche, and downplay parts that don’t, but don’t fake anything or misrepresent yourself in any way, as this will cost you followers.
Step 1: Determining Your Niche
The first step to finding brand deals as a YouTube influencer is to understand your niche and audience.
A niche is a specific area of focus that sets you apart from other influencers. It could be anything from beauty to gaming, fitness, cooking, or travel.
Knowing your niche and audience is critical because it helps you determine your rates and pricing strategy.
Here are a few key factors to consider when determining your niche:
Do you already have a niche?
It could be that your YouTube channel has already coalesced around a central theme or topic, either organically or by design, and this means that most of the hard work is already done.
All that’s left is to develop your brand to best address that niche audience.
Beware of generalization.
Don’t try to focus on more than one niche, let alone a bunch of them. If your content is too scattered or incohesive, you won’t have good follower retention or engagement.
Followers come first.
Your followers are your most valuable asset, and without them, you have nothing to influence.
On YouTube, this means your subscribers, as well as regular viewers who have not yet subscribed. Aim your content with that specific audience in mind, and cater to your niche as much as possible.
Keep it real.
As mentioned, nothing loses you subscribers faster than appearing fake or inauthentic, and the best way to avoid this is to select a niche you have a genuine passion for and interest in.
This will show in your videos, and further deepen the bond between you and your subscribers.
Step 2: Build Your Brand and Online Presence
Your brand is how you present yourself to the world, and it should reflect your values, personality, and niche.
To build a strong brand, start by defining your mission statement and value proposition.
What do you stand for, and what makes you unique?
Next, optimize your YouTube channel and social media profiles to showcase your brand identity.
This could include using consistent branding elements like logos, colors, and fonts, creating high-quality visuals, and developing a content strategy that aligns with your niche and values.
Tips for Building Your Brand:
Keep it consistent
Don’t spend endless hours fine-tuning your brand colors, fonts, and logo only to then try to improve them or change them later.
Your brand takes time and needs to be consistent over that time to take root in the public mind.
Keep it unique
Don’t be afraid to make your brand stand out with a bold choice of fonts and colors, striking combinations, memorable taglines, and an impactful logo.
Keep it compatible
Everything about your brand should be internally compatible and free of compromises and contradictions.
Your brand should not present any obvious inconsistencies as these can damage brand trust from the get-go.
Networking and Building Relationships
The influencer industry is all about relationships, and it’s important to connect with brands and agencies that are a good fit for your niche and values.
To network effectively, start by reaching out to brands that you admire and introducing yourself.
You can also attend industry events and conferences to meet potential partners in person.
When networking, be authentic and focus on building genuine relationships, rather than just trying to land a deal.
When reaching out to brands, it’s important to have a media kit that showcases your brand and services.
A media kit is a document that includes your bio, social media statistics, rates, and past collaborations. It helps brands understand who you are and what you can offer.
When pitching your services, focus on the value you can provide and how you can help the brand achieve its goals.
Step 3: Make An Impression On Brands
The third step to finding brand deals as a YouTube influencer is to network and introduce yourself professionally.
This step can be daunting and requires you to make a positive and professional impression on prospective brands.
From preparing your portfolio and media kit to crafting your actual pitch, there is a lot of care that must be taken in this part of the process.
Here are some tips on building good relationships with brands:
Look for matching values.
The closer the match between the core values and mission of the brand and your own, the more likely that the relationship will be a lasting and fruitful one.
The match doesn’t have to be perfect, but you should avoid especially poor or incompatible matches, and remain patient when these are the only ones on offer.
Reach out to a person.
Remember, the person on the other side of your pitch is exactly that, a person – a human being, with their own life, thoughts, feelings, dreams, and worries.
Don’t reach out to a faceless brand, or write for some sort of imaginary review board.
Make your outreach warm and personal, and try to get in touch with the person on the other side.
Only bespoke approaches.
Make sure you do your research on any brand you plan to approach and tailor your pitch to that particular brand.
Mention things like why you love the brand, what recent projects, products, or releases of theirs you appreciated, and so on.
Top brands receive and ignore hundreds of mass spam pitch emails every day, and one well-crafted and personalized pitch is more likely to get a response than a thousand generic mass spam pitches.
Don’t give up.
Even with a personalized pitch, this kind of cold approach has a rate of return of no better than one out of ten.
Be persistent, and try to send at least one carefully crafted and personalized pitch per day, every day, until one sticks.
Negotiating and Closing Brand Deals
Negotiating a paid sponsorship on YouTube can be tricky, but it’s important to set your rates and pricing strategy based on your niche, audience, and value proposition.
You can research industry rates and look at what other influencers in your niche are charging to get a sense of what’s reasonable.
When negotiating, be confident and assertive, but also be willing to compromise and find a win-win solution.
Step 4: Always Be Closing
The fourth step to finding brand deals as a YouTube creator is to negotiate and close deals.
Once you have negotiated a deal, it’s important to draft and sign a contract that outlines the terms of the agreement.
The contract should include details such as the scope of work, deliverables, payment schedule, and any legal requirements.
It’s also important to have a clear understanding of the legal aspects of brand deals, such as disclosure requirements and intellectual property rights.
After the Deal is Done
Once you have completed the deal, congratulations! You now have a brand deal or sponsorship for your YouTube channel!
But there are two more things to consider that will really take your relationship with brands to the next level, and your income from brand deals along with it.
Step 5: Delivering and Measuring Results
Once you have landed a brand deal, it’s important to deliver high-quality content that meets the brand’s expectations and deadlines.
You should also be proactive in communicating with the brand and providing updates on your progress.
After the campaign, you should measure the success of the campaign and provide a post-campaign report to the brand.
This report should include metrics such as engagement rates, impressions, and conversions.
Step 6: Maintaining Long-Term Relationships
After the initial brand deal is over, it’s important to follow up with the brand and maintain a long-term relationship.
You should provide value to the brand by promoting its products and services on your channel and social media profiles even after the campaign is over.
You can also keep in touch with the brand by sending periodic updates on your latest projects and achievements.
It’s important to remember that brand deals are not just about making money; they are also about building relationships and partnerships.
By focusing on building long-term relationships, you can establish yourself as a valuable partner for brands and agencies, which can lead to more opportunities in the future.
Alternative Ways to Approach Brands
Perhaps the best way to make money working with brands is through affiliate marketing, and you’ve no doubt seen this sort of thing at work before when your favorite Youtuber shares their discount code for this or that.
YouTube content creators are getting paid every time that discount code gets used.
If there is a brand product you adore, and you can market it to your followers, try to get an affiliate link from the brand.
That way, you are saving your followers money on a product you know is great, and getting paid for it.
Admitad Partner Network
One of the easiest ways to get started with affiliate marketing is through Admitad Partner Network, a platform with over two thousand companies on its roster, including big brands like Adobe and Canva.
With this kind of selection, it should be easy to find various brands that would be great fits for an affiliate marketing deal.
Admitad takes care of all the admin and bureaucracy, making the process smooth and easy.
If you’ve been wanting to break into affiliate marketing, but don’t have any idea where to start, then Admitad Partner Network is the perfect place for you to start getting affiliate links and making money.
If you’re looking to partner with large brands, Admitad can connect you to:
ConvertSocial is essentially a platform that connects brands with influencers, and it specializes in helping people monetize their social media accounts.
ConvertSocial also gives YouTube content creators access to top brands, like Nike and Sony, as well as a very wide selection of brands and monetization opportunities sure to fit your niche and align with your brand.
If you want to get YouTube brand deals with less than 1000 subscribers as quickly as possible, then ConvertSocial is the best route to take.
Much like Admitad, it works through using affiliate links, but its focus on social media makes it a better option for those focused on building their YouTube influence.
Finding brand deals as a YouTube influencer requires a combination of strategy, networking, and relationship-building.
By understanding your niche and audience, building a strong brand identity, networking effectively, negotiating and closing deals, delivering high-quality content, and maintaining long-term relationships, you can establish yourself as a successful influencer and monetize your content through brand deals.
There are many, many ways to get sponsorships on YouTube.
Remember, building a successful influencer career takes time and effort, but with the right approach, you can achieve your goals and build a fulfilling career as a YouTube influencer.