Picture it - whether you're a brand new blogger, or an established influencer, how great would it feel to know that your favourite brand are excited to collaborate with you? That your blog has the power to attract and impact exactly the audience you're looking for?! Brand collaborations with bloggers and influencers are a fast growing and brilliant way to benefit both brand and blogger.
Brand collabs are a great way to increase blog traffic, boost engagement and ultimately generate sales. The problem is that without realising it, your blog could automatically be repelling the very brands you are looking to collaborate with. If you've experienced rejections when pitching to brands, or even if it's not something you've tried with your blog but you don't want to rule it out for the future, there's a few important things to check, to make sure you're not putting off the best brand collaborations you could hope for.
Be honest - what is limiting your brand collab chances?
We all know how important it is to have great written content on your blog, both from an engagement point of view, and also to maximise your SEO. However, what I see lots of bloggers failing to get right is to put the same amount of time and effort into the very first part of each blog their readers will interact with - the imagery!
How often have you written a post, done your research, edited it, checked it, double checked it and then two seconds before publishing it done a mad scramble to find a quick image to go with it? The post could be the best thing ever written, but if the first thing your social media followers will see is a grainy, blurry, badly composed snap, it would not even stop them in their scroll. You get no clicks, your blog post visits are low, and you're left wondering why no-one read your wonderful post!
Are your blog images letting you down?
Your blog and social post images are absolutely vital if you want to play with the big boys when it comes to nabbing the best brand collaborations for your blog. Good photography can make the difference between the same post generating tons of views, comments and engagements, or falling flat. If you want to boost your blog to collaborate with brands, the first thing you need to do is to start THINKING like a brand. Let's take a look at three simple fixes you can try to improve your chances when it comes to the best brands...
Think like a brand
The most memorable brands of all time don't just happen by accident! Every single, last little detail of the way the power brands like Coca Cola or Gucci interact is thought about, planned, perfected. And what do all these incredible brands have in common? The QUALITY of their imagery.
Take a brand like Harley Davidson. The name has become synonymous with freedom, power, being the best with a hint of rebelliousness. All of these qualities are reflected in the shots they use - high quality, iconic and inspirational shots. From even a first glance, the customer can see what they as a brand are all about.
In the same way, brands looking to collaborate with bloggers need to be sure that the quality of their message is not going to be diluted. If your blog uses poor images - low quality, or badly lit, or amateurish shots - is it really going to be the right place for a brand to represent themselves? Can they trust that you will do their brand justice?
Consistency is key
Big brands spend millions on making sure their brand appears consistently, whatever the medium. In practice, this might mean all images use post-production to ensure consistent tones. Locations and shots will be planned meticulously, long before a shoot even takes place. Think about a brand like The White Company - their product shots and lifestyle imagery whilst differing from season to season, are all instantly recognisable from the style, colours, tones and feel of the images.
To attract the best brand collaborations, your blog needs to showcase how you can deliver the same kind of consistency. The best brands will be looking for bloggers with a reliable sense of who they are, and what this looks like. Brands need to see that if they trust you with their content, you'll deliver exactly what they need. Using consistent, quality and engaging images allows you to reach out to the brands you’re longing to partner with, knowing you can provide what they are expecting, every single time.
What story is your blog photography telling?
Collaborating with brands marks a step up from blogging as a hobby, to a more professional way of life. Put simply, if your blog imagery is telling the story that you're not taking this seriously, then how on earth do you expect a brand to take you seriously either?! An investment into great photography is a short cut to levelling up your blog, and being taken seriously by the brands you're looking to collaborate with.
The other way your images can help attract the best brand collabs is to massively increase the engagement on your blog. A great photograph can be such a powerful tool, an immediate link to your audience and their emotions. Using storytelling to draw your readers on a visual journey, where they see and feel what you're all about can be a vital part of building a loyal blog audience.
Brands will be looking to see how engaged your following is when talking about collaborations. Your images should excite and entice your viewers to find out more. Beyonce is the master of this - her instagram feed shows exactly the right amount of reveal and intrigue to keep her followers feeling connected to her. As one of the most powerful personal brands on earth, she understands the power of visuals in creating a rock solid brand!
So what are you waiting for?!
Collaborating with brands is a great way to get your blog noticed, to increase your blog traffic and to generate content for your social media. By taking a long hard look at areas where you could improve your imagery and visuals, you'll be on the right path to nailing that perfect brand collab you've been longing for!
If you want to take the next step in working with killer brands on your blog or social media, I've put together a free download to help you. You'll find templates for making the first approaches to brands for collaborations, and tips to make sure your pitch is standing out for all the RIGHT reasons! Check it out.