Collaborating is the “it girl” of today’s business landscape. It’s the ticket to creating meaningful and beneficial interactions with like-minded brands, bloggers and influencers which has amazing possibilities for brand awareness and growth. When done properly, it is a valuable and incredibly smart way to build momentum, tap into new audiences and leverage your brands’ assets.
But like anything, there’s a bit of a shitty side to collaborating. We don’t mean to get all cynical on you, of course there’s genuine people who are looking for authentic and mutually beneficial collabs. But then there’s the sharks. Unfortunately, some people take advantage of keen collaborators and a willingness to contribute your time, service, product or creativity. What happens all too often, is that the scales aren’t balanced. One person contributes more than the other or someone stands to gain more. And if you’re talking to a brand or company you love, it can be easy to get swept away in what they’re saying/offering - although it might not be right for you.
So it’s time to get savvy!
We chatted to Jess Ruhfus of Collabosaurus, the matchmaker for brand collaborations, who has three simple strategies for balancing the scales & nailing clever brand collabs.
Identify your brand’s assets Every brand has something another brand wants. Whether you have a beautiful product, a large mailing list, graphic design skills or a big following on social media - getting clear on the value of these things is incredibly important. By writing down all of the collaborative strengths of your business, you’ll have the confidence to know what you can offer and will be able to justify a fair exchange. We built Collabosaurus because we hated unfair collabs! Collabosaurus has a match-making algorithm that not only matches you with brands that can help you grow, but you can see what’s on offer, as well as what’s desired, before you connect.
Seek a collaboration that’s in line with your goals Put that big name brand on your dream board, but don’t let it be the only one you go for. Big name brand collaborations are amazing, but the truth is, if you’re seeking a collab purely to leverage another brand’s name, is it really helping you achieve your goals? Is it solving a problem you’re having?
Say for example - you were looking to increase traffic to your website so you could increase your online sales. Then, a big BIG brand reached out to collaborate - would you say yes? Sure, it might be a really great, win/win deal. But often, big brands can’t whip together multiple social media promotion, email blast-outs and PR campaigns heavily featuring your business - in a matter of weeks. Perhaps their community aren’t highly engaged? Or they don’t sit in your target market. Would a big brand collab be worth it? Sometimes.
Instead, seek different types of collaborations often, with different sized brands. It’ll keep your marketing fresh and allow you to tap into new communities over time.
Make sure it’s mutually beneficial A successful brand collaboration doesn’t leave you with an icky feeling. Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want, and make sure you’re exchanging in a fair way. A lot of the time, a great collab will turn into many more collabs down the track, networking connections & friendships. We like to use the ‘dating’ analogy alot, and just like any relationship, you have to work at it! Collabosaurus is a platform that plays matchmaker for brands and connects businesses based on their industry, target audience and goals. Part of the breezy process of ‘listing a campaign’ is that there are drop-down menus to choose from - so we completely remove the need to ‘pitch.’ But if you are doing a pitch to a prospective client remember to be professional, honest and clear.
So If you’re looking to collab, make sure you know your brand’s worth, what you can offer, and before saying yes - check yourself.
You can list a project on Collabosaurus for free here https://collabosaurus.com/ or head to our Instagram for more tips and advice