No matter what stage of business you’re in – one thing remains the same. You want to get noticed by your favorite brands! This might look like getting a sneak peek at the latest new products with a fun delivery, receiving an invite to a big press trip or being approached for an upcoming sponsored campaign. You may wonder just HOW brands/agencies are finding people to put on their list for these awesome opportunities, and even more so how to ensure you are top of mind.

At Wellevation HQ, it’s no secret that we take a relationship-based approach to influencer marketing. Not only do we regularly communicate with brands on behalf of our own influencer partners, but we also plan and manage projects on behalf of brands where we envision what the project will look like and who will be included. This means we have a 360 degree view of what it takes to get noticed, contacted and {ultimately contracted} for meaningful work.

Here are our top 5 ways to get noticed by brands:

First and foremost, brands are looking for people who are already enthusiastic about their products. We can’t tell you how many times brands are pitched with an invitation for a paid collaboration without any prior mention of or association to the brand. That’s why when we pitch, we always include links to previous coverage including the brand so they get a taste of what a partnership will look like and can see the influencer is looking for more than just business. Assuming a brand has budget because they worked with X influencer is not a good enough reason {or passion} to solicit a partnership!

If you aren’t willing to speak about the brand without a contract in place, consider if it’s really that meaningful to you or your audience. And it’s ok if the answer is no! But don’t be afraid of a little free press to build goodwill. This actually makes a brand more likely to recognize you as an advocate and consider you for future paid work. We’ve been involved in many conversations where accepting free product for an event or mentioning a brand on TV were what sealed the deal for continued work together.

These gestures give the decision-maker case studies to share back {and show off to!} their team and prove the genuine excitement you have for the brand. It helps them look good, which in turn helps you look even better. This is particularly true for influencers who may typically fly under the radar or have a smaller following. It is also true for more experienced and higher-profile influencers who require a more significant investment to work with.

We think the best way to get noticed by brands is by taking that first step. These days, there are so many choices that unless you already have a personal connection or demonstrated support for the brand, the likelihood of your name being discovered on its own continues to decrease. In addition to proactively engaging with brands, you can also consider online networks or talent management groups to get more visible. Each comes with its own set of pros/cons {which btw we’d love to continue discussing with you in our free Facebook group, WHQ Insiders!}.

With networks, you’re automatically included in a database that’s provided to brands {for a fee}. The good news is your name is instantly available to brands/agencies selecting people based on specific criteria. However, you often lose creative control because of the specificity of campaign criteria/deliverables, negotiation power because budgets are set {and some of that goes to accessing the database in the first place} and you’re usually at the mercy of the database or platform as to the ownership rights of your content and how you can {or more likely, can’t} continue the relationship with the brand directly once the project is over. This can be a great place to start for beginners to get a few projects under their belt or to gain work with some of the large companies who prefer technology solutions to “scale” their influencer marketing efforts. If you’re looking to develop that 1:1, long-term relationship it’s not likely to be found here.

We also are increasingly seeing modeling and other “talent” agencies branching out into the influencer space. This can be a great way to have someone handle the details and negotiations of a partnership on your behalf. However, not all agencies are created equal. You’ll want to be mindful of whether they’re asking to own your entire contact list or run every single partnership through them for a commission. With most talent management agencies we’ve interacted with for brand projects, the influencer is completely cut out of the conversation and loses that direct connection to and relationship with the brand. They also don’t always see how they are being presented to the client, so if having more control {or at least some visibility} over your image is important, choose wisely. At Wellevation HQ, our purpose is to secure incremental business for our partners and always keep them included in important conversations while freeing up more of their time to focus on creative vs. logistics.

Now that you know our top tips for getting noticed by brands, where do you go from here?

We recommend that you download our influencer marketing campaign checklist so you’re prepared to manage the ins and outs of those partnerships as they do come your way.

Plus, join us on June 26th for a completely FREE webinar on how to ditch the one-off projects and unpredictable income to land longer-lasting, better-paying brand partnerships. We can’t wait to see you there!

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