Let’s talk brand collaborations: What’s important to know?

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Brand collaborations with influencers are a common theme in the marketing world. We are seeing more and more companies engaging with influencers through sponsored posts. And of course, there are a few things to take into consideration when setting up a collaboration, not only for the brand, but also for the influencer. In this article, we want to talk you through the ins and outs of brand collabs and pass on some first-hand advice from our Austrian Brand Ambassador, Viktoria, to help you navigate through the process.  

What’s important for brands when selecting influencers? 

stylink is home to a variety of influencers and content creators across the world. We are here to ensure that collaborations between you and the brands are enjoyable and run as smoothly as possible. While creators of all types bring value to the table during a collaboration in different aspects, micro-influencers are of great interest to brands due to their closeness not only to the brand but also to the target group (their community). So, let’s get into some of the most important aspects for influencers and brand collaborations.  

Communication and reliability: the be-all, end-all of a collaboration 

Let’s talk about reliability. It’s the one aspect we do not like to compromise on because it is so important for you, for stylink, and of course for the brands. At stylink, we expect you to create content regularly in the lead-up to collaborations, we also expect you to adhere to agreements that all parties agreed to prior to the collab. We’re talking content, deadlines, AD labeling, and IG tags. The brands love to see creators who independently deliver their content on time, and designed in a way that matches the requirements of the collaboration.  

Of course, this goes in line with regular and transparent communication. Not sure about the goal of the collab or the requirements you see in the briefing? Do not be afraid to ask! Brand collaborations can only be successful if everyone is on the same page about the details. At the same time, please make sure to always reach out instantly if you run into problems or delays of any kind. If you communicate openly about the issue or the fact that you may not be able to meet the deadline, it’s best to give a fair warning. This way, your partners can work with you on finding a solution. Honest communication is valued highly by all brands and by us, here at stylink.   

Creators should enjoy the collaboration  

It’s not rocket science: If you enjoy doing something, the outcome is usually great! Content creators who identify with the brand they are promoting and who genuinely care about the products generally create convincing and high-quality content for their communities. Being able to see the excitement and your honest view on the product as well as the brand, is beneficial and important for everyone, as it resonates with your personality. Therefore, brands always look for the brand-influencer-fit. It’s important to think about the following: Have you used the products before? What is your take on the brand? Does your content align with the mission and the vision of the brand?  

Creative and authentic content 

This leads directly to our next tip: creating authentic and creative content (that fits your account). Credibility is important for all content creators. No one wants to be accused of sharing irrelevant or superficial content. As we said previously, make sure you are a fit for the brands’ values, but also question whether the brand aligns with your personal values and opinions. If you are an advocate for body positivity and self-love, and you are approached by a company selling weight-loss shakes, critically ask yourself if you think it’s a good fit. While it might be a good opportunity to generate some income, what is it going to tell your community? Remember that you are an inspiration for your followers.  

Apart from the brand-influencer-fit, it is important for brands that you incorporate the advertisement authentically into your daily content, without it being delivered and presented randomly. Be creative! Be funny, and emotional but most importantly, be true to yourself! Creative content is much more enjoyable and creates greater engagement and brand loyalty, regardless of whether it’s an official collaboration or your everyday content. The three magic words are: credible, creative, and engaging.  

What can influencers expect from the companies? 

We’ve talked to our Austrian Brand Ambassador Viktoria to find out what influencers expect from the companies they collaborate with.  

While open and transparent communication is expected from influencers, it is just as important from the creator’s point of view. In order to plan out your own schedule and the work that goes into the collaboration, Viktoria says that she expects to understand the details and the scope of the work ahead of the cooperation. By putting the details either into writing or by recording the conversation, she can make sure that both sides adhere to the agreements of the collaboration.  

Another important aspect for Viktoria is the collab briefing. This makes communicating much easier and it also lists all major details for the content that she creates for the target group. What makes a good briefing you ask? It should present the most important details about the brand, the product and the benefits. It can also include general rules for the cooperation and information on what content formats the company is looking for. 

Collaboration with companies: No prefabricated content, please 

For Viktoria, it is most important to have free reign on the content she is creating for the collaboration. She does not like to be told word for word what she is to say during the cooperation because this will not be perceived as authentic by her community. Generally, content creators know best how to address their followers and what kind of content they like.  

Viktoria says, “For me personally, this is out of the question because I want to address my target group as authentically as possible and that is simply not possible with given content.” Companies should be open about the content and wording and trust the content creators with their approach.  

Don’t forget to talk about feedback and compensation 

Since full-time content creators have to pay taxes and finance their living with their content, fair compensation needs to be agreed on. Of course, influencers need to grow their account during the first few years as well as attract an engaging community that trusts the influencer. Viktoria hopes that companies will understand and value the service influencers provide for them through their content. Therefore, it is absolutely appropriate to enquire about the compensation up front. This way, it can be an equal cooperation between the influencer and the brand, and both sides know where they stand from the beginning.  

One aspect that is often overlooked is the bilateral feedback over the course of the collaboration. Feedback enables both parties to improve their actions. Influencers can learn from the brands’ feedback as well as understand what content worked well and take that feedback into the next campaigns.  

Our conclusion 

At stylink, we understand that both the brands and the influencers have expectations when it comes to brand collaborations and what is important to them. Make the most of the collaboration by thinking outside the box and communicating as open and transparent as possible. Authenticity, creativity, reliability, and fair compensation are all equally important and should be discussed at the beginning of the cooperation.  

Are you a content creator that wants to grow your account and earn more than just likes? Sign up at stylink now and recommend your fav products to your community and earn money for every click on your affiliate links. Find out more about your opportunities at stylink, and learn how to monetize your content 

About the Author

Johanna Alke

Johanna is responsible for the UK market at stylink. She enjoys discovering new social media trends and likes to immerse herself in the digital world.

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