How To Turn Gifted Into Paid Influencer Collaborations

The Klaia Team
May 9, 2023
5 min read

It can be difficult to turn gifted into paid influencer collaborations. However, it’s a necessary and common obstacle for content creators that are working to monetize their brand collaborations. It can be unconformable and intimidating to ask a brand for payment; but it is important to be your own advocate and to know your worth. If you’re looking for a place to start, you’re in the right place. Here's how to turn gifted into paid influencer collaborations.

As you continue to grow and increase your collaborations with brands, more admin work falls on your lap. We are here to help you save time on admin so you can keep growing & creating! We make it easy to manage and organize brand partnerships, profits and expenses, and content submissions when you join Klaia! The best part? It’s free!

It can be hard to keep track of the brand opportunities influencer platforms have available. So, we took the matter into our hands and released Klaia’s Brand Deals Directory – browse over 100 brand deals opportunities updated every week.

Know your value

To make the most out of your paid collaborations, you need to recognize the value that you and your content have to brands you work with. This may be affected by your engagement, the quality of your content, and much more.

If you’re unsure of how much to ask for payment, Inzpire is an amazing resource! They give you a range of what you could charge based on your engagement range, amount of deliverables and platforms. Once you’ve identified your value to brands, be ready to show them why this is true and how it applies to them specifically. A great way to do this is preparing analytics from your gifted partnerships. To get a closer look at these, you can use Fohr and gather more data for yourself and for brands.

Take the risk & ask for it

The first step to make a gifted partnership into a paid collaboration is to simply ask! The worst that can happen is the brand will say “no”, but then you’ll be able to put your focus into other brand collaborations.

If you’ve already worked with the brand previously and they want to collaborate again, ask them about the possibility of payment. Since they have already worked with you and seen your content, there’s a lot less risk involved for them. It makes it easier for them to turn your partnership into a paid collaboration from an existing relationship.

Even if you haven’t already heard from a brand, you can reach out and let them know who you are. This shows your initiative and desire to work with them.

If you aren’t sure about how to ask for payment. Here’s a couple responses that can help.

“I would love to work with you, however I am only able to take on paid partnerships at the moment. Do you have a budget for this collaboration?”

“Thank you for reaching out. I would love to share your product with my audience. Gifts are always appreciated, however they do not guarantee a post. Is there a budget for this partnership?

Show what you have to offer

Discuss how you can be an asset with the content you produce and the quality at which you produce it. This can be representative of your own individual style that you offer. And also show how engaged your audience is with your content – you can show this by sharing amount of clicks on the links you post, and engagement rate. To take this further, you can point out why your audience might be interested in the product and elaborate on what type of content you’d be creating: maybe a try-on haul, vacation outfit ideas, etc.

You can also offer them a discount on content/posting bundles. Which is also a way to build a long-term partnership with a brand. For example, if you charge $500 per post. You can offer them 2 posts for $800.

Be prepared to walk away

While it can be uncomfortable, turning gifted partnerships into paid collaborations requires some negotiation and conversation about money and budgets.

If you don’t feel that the amount of money you’re being offered is fair, for any reason, negotiate. This can benefit you in a variety of ways but also makes the brand you’re working with aware that you see value in your work and expect them to see it as well.

However, it is important to note that even if you negotiate and lower your rates, there’s brands that simply won’t take on paid partnerships. So, be prepared to walk away. Don’t let this get to you. Sometimes brands have a limited budget, especially if they are just dipping their toes in influencer marketing. And sometimes they don’t offer payment to any creator regardless of their following. In that case, it is better to stop working with those brands. They don’t value creators enough to pay them.

Remember: you deserve to get paid. Gifted products don’t pay bills.

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