Working with Brands

How to Work with Brands on Your First Sponsored Post: Beginner Blogger Edition

Slightly Savvy is an influencer's sneak peek behind the scenes of the PR world, built to deliver the most transparent PR insights to bloggers + influencers who want to transform their blog into a business.

Created by Pablo Tournellefrom the Noun Project




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When you’re starting out in blogging, it might feel like working with brands like bigger influencers do is a pipe dream. And you might think that you can only work with brands once you hit a certain number of followers, become an expert…whatever the Internet likes to tell us these days.

In my everyday life, I work in PR – running my own firm specializing in press + influencer relations. It takes me out to LA about once a month, making me really double down on the whole minimal packing thing, travel size skincare that WON’T get taken from me by TSA, and basically having a bag packed at all times.

I work with some of the largest YouTubers and bloggers out there, negotiating their brand deals and vetting them for collaborations, I get to see the inside workings of their business.

And believe me when I say they all (mostly) were HOT messes when they worked on their first brand partnership.

SO. I’d like to deliver some of those secrets for your first collaboration – so you can skip the hot mess part and just get to the successful, money-in-the-bank part.

Good? Good.

Ditch whatever negative mental game you have

If you’re sitting there thinking, “I am too small to work with brands, I’m not important enough, no one wants to work with me…”

Then no one will.

If you were on your way to pitching to brand or starting the research process even find someone that you want to work with, you are the real deal.

Ditch the negative self talk about why you can’t and focus on how you can.

Find the brands + then pitch them

OK, so the ultimate question is how to find the brands that you want to work with/they want to work with you and then reach out to them.

I know this can feel super frightening and nerve-racking if it’s your first time – but trust me when I say that everyone starts somewhere.

And never be afraid to pitch because the worst they can say is no, right??

Start with smaller brands. If you were a blogger with a smaller following, chances are Nike and Adidas aren’t going to want to work with you at this point.

However, there are plenty of companies in the world that need influencers and need the content they create. You just have to find them.

It does blow my mind when bloggers say they can’t think of any brands to pitch to – do you know how many businesses are in the US? I actually went and looked and it’s over 3 million.

So I guarantee that there is at least 1 out of 3 million brands who want to work with you.

Once you’ve pitched to 3 million brands and gotten 3 million NOs, then come back to me and ask what to do 😉

Anyway – start searching on Instagram and look for brands who 1) you recognize, enjoy their products, and would like to work with them or 2) love their aesthetic, vibe, and think you could like the product.

email pitch brands

Oh yeah and your pitch. 

Here’s one I wrote for you guys that I think will make you 1) stand out and 2) deliver ALL the key info brands or PR firms need.

Hey Katherine,

I wanted to reach out because I found your skincare brand on Instagram, and I think it looks really cool. Love what you guys are doing with cruelty-free skincare.

My blog, Slightly Savvy, sees over 7,000 page views/month with an incredibly high 30% engagement rate. My Instagram also sees about a 30% engagement rate. With summer starting soon, I’d love to share some of your products with my readers on repairing sun damage, protecting against pollution, and anti-aging.

I would love to partner with you guys in some way.



Want more email pitch templates to tweak? Drop your email in the box below + they will zoom to your inbox!

Still treat it like a real business deal

This means a contract, invoice, and all the professional things. Just because it’s your first post doesn’t mean that you need to take it any less seriously than an influencer who’s done a gazillion sponsored posts.


A contract is a must-have even if it’s just a one pager.

Ask the brand for one and read through it super thoroughly.

Look at what’s required of you, your due dates, and clarify anything you don’t understand upfront.

This is such an important step because I see so many blogger and brand partnerships all parts simply because one side didn’t understand or didn’t like something that was in the contract… But signed it anyway and then brought it up weeks later.


Getting paid is super fun right? It’s definitely my favorite part of working with clients because it feeds my Starbucks addictions and my expensive skin care needs 😉

But for real, sending an invoice and keeping track of your income is just as important even if you’re only making 200 bucks.

Set the standards and systems in place now – AND you’re going to look so much more professional to a brand. Def not someone who’s just entering their first rodeo you know. 

PayPal is literally free invoicing- and it’s super simple to set up. Throw your logo on there, fill out what the brand owes you, and email it away. And the money will get deposited right into your bank account.

So babes, there’s your mini road map – from reaching out to pitching to getting that invoice squared away.

If you loved this post, you’ll love Summer Camp even MORE.

If you’re a serious blogger looking to make serious $$ from working with brands, this is for you.

One blogger used the information in Summer Camp to nail down $1200 in brand collaborations in less than a week AND she upped her normal pricing.

Summer Camp is built to teach you exactly what brands are looking for in influencers, how to email pitch to brands, how to structure your press kit, and SO much more.

You’re also going to get 1 on 1 access to myself and 2 other ladies who work in PR with brands like Dove, Kitchen Aid, and TRESemmé – ask us any questions, get feedback on your blog, talk strategy with us, etc.

“I’m vetting a 50 person list right now, weeding through people who are a fit for an upcoming program. I wish I could help these women understand how to make their content feel more authentic + brand friendly.” – Account + Influencer Relations at Edelman PR

“So many times I’ve wanted to tell bloggers exactly why they weren’t chosen for a campaign and just give them some insider tricks, those little tweaks that take a blogger to the next level.” – Brand Manager at $300M Global Company

I would LOVE to help you guys grow your brands and blogs.

Enroll in Camp –> here


And again, if you want 2 more email pitch templates you can steal + send – drop your email in the box below. You guys always tell me you love these pitches and they work really well soooo grab them 🙂


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