We picked Lauren’s brain to get the most information out of her that we could. When asked how small brands should get started when they don’t have that big of an audience, she said:
“I would recommend starting with some other brands that have an audience size of under 100,000 to help kickstart you.”
“Go to them and say that you will not only host the sweepstakes and make all the creative, but that you will also cover the prize costs. It’ll give them faith that you’re not just trying to ride their coattails, but that you want it to be successful for them as well.”
How do I find partners to reach out to?
What do I say in my outreach to secure a partner?
Though we’ve covered how to overcome these hurdles earlier in this guide, Lauren says:
“Think about brands that are complimentary to yours, or have similar (but not competitive) value propositions. If you run a beauty newsletter with makeup tips, maybe a spa brand might be a good fit. Or if you're a small bed & breakfast, maybe a local coffee shop would like to work with you. Even when brands reach out to me, and we decide it's not the right fit that time, we often stay in touch and will help connect each other to leads in the future.
But the biggest piece of advice I can offer is: don't burn anyone. Your partners are, in many ways, the keepers of your reputation and how you're perceived to other potential partners. If you're rude or difficult to work with, or you don't deliver on promises you made, rest assured that it will not remain a secret. Partner campaigns are based on mutual interest and integrity, and you won't succeed if you don't make a positive impression.”
When it comes to partner promotions, Lauren has a great deal of experience being approached by brands of all shapes and sizes, so we wanted to put you in her shoes for you to see how someone at a larger brand analyzes outreach from a smaller brand.
“Any marketer approached by a smaller brand is going to wonder: If my list is 500k, what do I get out of a list that's 5k? Is my brand stuffy, and the smaller brand is trendy? Do they have major growth potential that will benefit me later?
You should make it very clear what value you bring when pitching a much larger or more established brand. Remember that every time they send an email campaign, that's an opportunity for their readers to unsubscribe. They need to know that taking a chance on you will be worth it.