Have you ever wondered how content creators or influencers make money? Did you think they get paid just for making an aesthetic feed or dressing up for the camera?
Well, they do!!
Ever since social media, especially Instagram, has become the new playground for marketing, major and minor brands have been on the lookout for creators and influencers that fit their niche to help promote their products or services.
These collaborations originally started with barter deals, where a brand would offer products or services in exchange for a post or video on their account or page. This would direct their followers to the brands’ websites or pages.
This slowly progressed and now, based on the number of followers or subscribers, and on how famous the individual is in general, the barter deals have turned into monetized transactions. This change, along with the pandemic has moved a ton of people to be either a creator or build a brand or business big enough to pay a creator to promote your stuff.
In this article, I’ll tell you the easiest way to find Instagram collaborations, for both brands and for creators.
Creators, influencers, brands, and businesses are available on Instagram by the dozen. You just need to know how to filter them out and get the best ones.
Brands: This is the most convenient and easiest way to look for potential influencers that will do a good job marketing your product. Search for hashtags relating to your product or service or industry. Note down all the ‘Top’ images or posts you like. You can check their bios, and if they have a good follower base and they match your desired aesthetic, you can DM them. Most people also now include their number or email address and you can contact them via those methods.
Influencers: Influencers, if you don’t already have a list of companies you’d like to collaborate with, you can also search for hashtags based on your niche and look for companies that use collaborations for their marketing. You can also different kinds of products or services based on your abilities. For example, if you’re athletic, you can contact sports shoe brands, gyms, or even health food companies.
Brands: In an industry where competition is healthy, checking in on what your competitors are doing, only to do it better, is not cheating. Find out which influencers others in your industry tend to collaborate with. Look through their social profiles and other marketing materials to see where they make use of collaborations and who are their prime influencers and contact them.
Influencers: For influencers, it’s not much different. Look at the profiles of other influencers and here you’ll be able to find out which brands are open to collaborations. You can DM the brand or take a little more effort and research the brand. You may find an official email id and maybe even one that leads straight to the person handling collaborations.
Brands: As a brand, your followers are already a fan of what you do. You can be sure that there will also be creators or potential brand ambassadors among your own follower list. Putting out a quick story will help filter out users that want to collaborate and market your brand. It is of course easier to contact users with a complete and update bio. Influencers who also have linked their Influencer Media Kit would be the place to start.
Influencers: For influencers as well, keep an eye on who’s following you and your DMs and requests. It’s quite possible that, based on your work and aesthetic, brands may DM you for collaborations. Including your Media Kit in your bio will also come in handy when brands are looking for collaborations.
An Influencer Media Kit should include an updated bio with links to your other socials, your social media stats like your followers and subscribers, your audience demographics, and details about your past work. If you have any kind of review or testimonial from previous collaborators, that will just increase your odds of finding collaborations.
Brands: If you’re a well-established brand, it’s highly likely you also have a website. You can use this website to create a collaboration section. With some coding and a form, you can quickly create an easy way to filter out influencers interested in collaborating with you.
Influencers: If you’re a creator, it goes without saying that you have a little bit of creativity in you. You can use this to make your own website. It can be an influencer media kit in itself. You can also add collaboration-specific details. Create a way for brands to be able to contact you easily.
While points 1–4 were ways to get collaborations from both the brand and influencer views, the next couple of options apply to both in a similar way.
5. Google alerts and social listening
Setting up Google alerts with keywords pertaining to your brand or industry is very helpful. You’ll be alerted every time someone publishes something with those keywords in the caption, hashtag, or article. You can use the available filters to narrow down the alerts and only be notified of something potential.
Using apps that offer Web Listening, like Crowdfire, also helps in tracking potential collaborations. All you need to do is keep adding various keywords so that the app can fetch relevant data for you. Once you have this data, you can sift through it for potential collaborations.
6. Instagram remix
Like TikTok Duets, Instagram has an option to remix reels. It basically means you can use your own video along with another. It can be a reaction video, an interaction video, or a collaboration. While there currently isn’t a way to easily search for brands or influencers that use this, it definitely is a good thing to add to your pitch.
Bonus tip for brands
Just like an influencer must create a media kit to enhance their bio and showcase their skills, brands must also keep in mind an important checklist when shortlisting influencers for their marketing plans.
First is the Target Audience. This should match when finding your army of influencers. If they have a media kit, you’ll know about their audience demographic quickly. If not, you’ll have to do a little research.
Second is the Personality of the influencer. It’s not always about aesthetics, it’s also about the kind of person the individual is.
The third is closely related to the second. You must pay attention to engagement levels rather than focusing only on follower or subscriber numbers. If they have a charismatic personality, it bodes well for your brand.
The last is setting goals. You may never find 1 influencer that does it all, which is why it’s important to set certain goals when looking for a collaboration with an influencer. Your goals may vary with the campaign. It may be for brand awareness, sales, customer loyalty, or audience building. The sky is the limit.
That’s all folks!
What other ways have you secured collaborations? Let me know in the comments below!