You guys seemed to enjoy last weekend’s homework assignment, so I decided to give you more this weekend.
Here are some of my key takeaways from the wonderful women who presented the Building Relationships with Ad Networks and Sponsors panel.
* Ask for what you want.
* Figure out which type of sponsors match your brand and find them. What are your top 10 dream brands? What brands are related to them?
“This is your brand land!” Sponsors should only be “adding to your awesomeness.” - Erin Loechner (I love her!)
* Create a clean design for your blog and run ads that complement it.
* Be cognizant of your mobile presence. What does your site look like on iPad, iPhone, etc.? How many of your site visitors are using mobile devices to read your blog?
When thinking about how to work with brands or sponsors:
* Go outside the box. The more outlandish your proposal, the better. You will stand out and people will want to see what you do.
* Make your proposals personal. Why do you love that brand? Why are they a perfect fit?
* Let sponsors know how you’re different/special.
* While your proposals should fit with your brand as well as your sponsor’s, it’s important to find out the sponsor’s business goals and solve their problems. Develop ideas that match their plans.
* If you have lower readership numbers on your own, consider partnering with a group of bloggers to approach larger brands.
* Be sure to define your mutual objectives when you’re negotiating with a brand. Clearly lay out what the sponsor will get from you (e.g., 5 tweets, 3 sponsored posts in x amount of time).
Questions to ask ad networks:
* What brands do you work with?
* Do you have ad channels - food, family, fashion, etc.?
* What do your ads look like? Can I see some examples?
What do you guys think about these tips? Do you have any of your own that you’d like to share?
Photos: Taken by me, featuring a few decorations, sponsors, and attendees of the Alt Summit mini-parties, including UPPERCASE, Squarespace, The Girls With Glasses, Pinhole Press, Kirtsy, HP, Emily Henderson, and HGTV.