At the Mom 2.0 Summit, I sat in on the panel How’d You Get That Sponsor? The Nuts and Bolts of Pitching with Maggie Mason, Erin Loechner, Liz Gumbinner. The topic was about getting big sponsors for your blog and crafting the pitch and overall story about who you are and what you do so sponsors find you more attractive. This advice can apply to anyone who is looking for advertisers, sponsors and even clients.
Here are some of the takeaways from these three powerful speakers and successful businesswomen:
1. Establish street cred. Show up. Meet people. Form relationships. Be nice. Let potential sponsors see that. With Twitter or any social media, you’re always an influencer of somebody and the people you influence are influencers so share that with potential sponsors. That is valuable.
2. Be present. Ask for what you want. It’s up to you do figure out what you want and go get it. Knowing in your mind your goal - for your site, your brand, for others - and having that mindset. Always look for potential opportunities.
3. Don’t oversaturate. Don’t water down your brand. Focus. Less can be better - and more manageable - than more.
4. Be the blogger that everyone wants. Beyond having a professional blog, be a professional. It is important to know brands see what you’re doing - the good and the bad. Be yourself, be authentic, but be aware of how you operate in the blogging space. Brands may be afraid with engaging with a “complainer.”
5. Own your niche. Bigger isn’t necessarily better to be relevant to a marketer. Know what you stand for in the space. Stand for something which in advertising is called “positioning.” Stand for something singular and specific. Marketers don’t want generalists. Don’t be self-deprecating - be proud of what you do.
6. Build your case. Sponsors are looking for reach and influence. Having more influence than reach can be very interesting to sponsors. Build your media kit and define who you are, who you reach (your demographics), and what you’re offering - the ways you position yourself to the sponsor. You can also include testimonials in your kit. Prominently display the press you’ve gotten.
7. Do the heavy lifting. Network. Identify sponsors to approach. Ask what their campaigns are for the year. Work hard to deliver opportunities and ideas to sponsors. It isn’t “What can you do for me?” but instead “What can I do for your brand?” Make it easy for the sponsor to execute. You do the heavy lifting - they write the check.
8. Define the relationship. First, you want a professional relationship. Outline mutual expectations to reduce the possibility of conflict. This also helps you manage “scope creep.” Ask “what are your success metrics for this campaign?”
9. Make it fun. Be nice. Respect the person you’re pitching. Be pleasant and gracious.
10. Know your worth. And know what you’re selling. Sponsorship is not banner advertising. Aim high. You’re worth it.
How do approach and work with sponsors?