While most big industries are set in their ways, influencer marketing is a relatively new one. And even though more and more brands are recognizing its immense value, there’s still some confusion regarding the financial aspect of it all. The industry’s novelty and the varying ‘sizes’ of its influencers often make a correct remuneration difficult to pinpoint. Creators need to know and define their worth and communicate it clearly to brands.
Are you having trouble deciding your fees? Or you don’t know how to negotiate efficiently with a brand? Then this blog post is for you.
At its core, influencer marketing means that an influencer collaborates with a brand to promote their products/services in return for remuneration. But to start talking money with brands, you need to know your worth. The chances are slim that a brand will offer you the best price right away. So it’s on you to know how much you should earn and why to open a transparent dialogue.
Define your worth
Here, we’d like to amplify the importance of a media kit. Think of your media kit as a resume and make sure it’s always up to date because it is one of the biggest factors in convincing potential business partners. Not only does it showcase all the important facts and figures, but it also shows brands that you’re serious about your work. It shows them that you’re worthy of their time and money.
Besides, it’s a good exercise to evaluate yourself while updating your media kit regularly. This will make understanding your value and pitching brands a much smoother process as well.
On top of knowing your worth, you have to go the extra mile: read up on your industry. Regularly. Know your stuff, research the rules, keep an eye on your competitors and the industry benchmarks. All of these can help you play out your strengths and negotiate better prices even more.
There will always be brands who offer you free products/services in exchange for promo. If you’re interested in their proposition, but you feel like they offer too little: there’s no harm in asking. Just because they didn’t mention money initially doesn’t mean they’re not willing to offer it. From their perspective, they’re just trying to get the best deal. So why wouldn’t you?
Reply enthusiastically; simply tell them that you prioritize paid collaborations right now and ask them if there is a budget.
If their answer is negative, ask yourself a few questions before accepting the initial offer:
- Is it something you want? Would you be prepared to pay money for it if it wasn’t being given to you for free?
- Does it interest your followers, and would it benefit them?
- Will it take a lot of your time?
Realize that you don’t have to say yes to everything and only work with brands you truly believe in and love.
Negotiating paid work
When you get an email with a serious proposition that you like – or if you’re reaching out yourself -, immediately send the brand your media kit, samples of past work, and some creative ideas.
If possible, do not mention a number in the early stages. Instead, let them make a suggestion first. Then, you can tell them what you can do for that amount – or what you cannot.
If you truly disagree with their price, you can disclose your preferred price. Always clarify: be honest and transparent about what makes up your fee. For example, you could include a timesheet with an hourly breakdown to show them how much work you put in.
There are multiple things you can mention when explaining and negotiating prices. Of course, there are the basics like follower count, production time, engagement rate, etc. But there are also a few other things you should agree upon:
- Exclusivity: sometimes, a brand expects exclusivity, meaning you can’t work with direct competitors or other similar brands. This is understandable, but it can result in a loss in potential revenue on your side because it prohibits you from accepting certain other assignments. Logically, the brand should compensate you for this
- Usage: what is their goal with your content? Are they going to use it once for Instagram, or will they recycle it on every platform for an unlimited amount of time? If so, this needs to be agreed upon, and you should be compensated in accordance
- Rights to content: pay attention to this as some brands will glaze over it, but rights to the content are actually something you can charge extra for!
Finally, another great technique is to offer them a few package rates with multiple deliverables. For some brands, negotiating a ‘custom’ deal is too confusing and time-consuming, so prepare some ready-made options for them to choose from. This speaks for itself but make the most expensive one the most attractive one.
Once you’ve agreed upon a fee, you should always stipulate all of the agreements in a contract, just so that everything is clear and there’s no chance of miscommunication.
Remember: brands want to work with you specifically because of who you are and what you do. So lean into your individuality and use it to your advantage in the negotiation process.
And whatever you do: always communicate honestly, transparently, and professionally. That way, you can create the type of relationship that will turn one brand post into a full-blown long-term collaboration.
Need more help arranging it all? Or finding brands to collab with? Influo can help you connect with hundreds of brands of all sizes and sectors. Sign up for free now to get immediate access to them and start making deals.