How to Email Pitch to Brands as a Blogger: Do’s + Dont’s From a PR Perspective

How to Email Pitch to Brands as a Blogger: Do’s + Dont’s From a PR Perspective

Today is the day! The day where we finally talk about what you guys have been wanting to talk about – how to email pitch to brands. 

So you read Brand Babes Day 1 where we talked about some must haves your blog/Insta NEEDS so your email can be successful. If you didn’t read it, I highly suggest you hit this button here, read it, litmus test your blog, then come back.

Day 1: Your Roadmap to Working with the Right Brands

Day 2: Breaking Down Email Pitches / / What Works + What Doesn’t (pitch yourself)

Day 3: Standing Out as an A+ Blogger + Over-Delivering on Collaborations (you closed the deal – now you need to OVER DELIVER)

Again guys – my full time job life is working in PR, so I’m on the flipside of blogging. I do a ton of pitches to reporters for stories, and I also get a ton of pictures from other brands.

Long story short – I’m in the trenches of pitching. My job is literally dependent on me getting pitches right, so I have made a serious study out of what to do. Like I will be fired if my pitches don’t succeed.

Without further ado, let’s talk about the emails you sent to brands. Because it’s make or break time.

pre-email time 

For the sake of clarity in this post, I’m going to use an example of a brand I would love to work with – Sunday Riley.

make sure your traffic + engagement is at least substantial + growing

If your traffic/engagement is really low or absolutely brand new, focus on gaining those numbers first.

Use Pinterest to boost your initial traffic. I bought one e-book and one e-book only when I started my own blog in March + it was “Pinteresting Strategies” here. This is truly a great tool to learn how to optimize Pinterest for organic, long-term traffic. Highly recommend.

find a contact email for the brand

Some people are going to say not to use the email info@sundayriley.com email because you won’t get a response. I disagree – I think if you do the right email pitch, you WILL get forwarded to whoever you need to be in front of.

Use a pr@sundayriley.com or marketing@sundayriley.com if there is one though.

OR you can go on linked in, go to the company page, go to employees, and then search for marketing and public relations. Then, find the person who does “brand partnerships, digital marketing, public relations,” some kind of title like that.

You could write multiple emails to multiple individuals, trying to guess who the perfect person is for you to be in contact with. Honestly, I would recommend going with a really strong email to the info@sundayriley or pr@sundayriley email. 

It’s going to save you a lot of time. And I get good pitches forwarded to me all the time by the support or contact email.

email necessities

  • catchy + short subject line
  • direct link to your Instagram + blog
  • qualitative stats – engagement rate, monthly views, growth from month to month
  • short, sweet, to the point – 3 paragraphs max, 3 sentence paragraphs
  • a genuine compliment is always nice
  • no extra clicking – don’t direct me to your press page or somewhere else – if you want to tell me about press, quickly list the top 3 brands you’ve worked with
  • genuine!! if this looks like the email has been copied + pasted 18 times…I’m already over it

Here’s the kicker guys – some people want to sell you these big email templates for pitching to brands.

Or they want to design a media kit for you for a lot of money.

You just don’t need that, in my opinion.

1. As a PR person, I am absolutely never going to scroll through a 10 page PDF/media kit.

2. You have a 50-50 shot of me actually looking at a 1 page attachment.

3. Don’t do yourself the disservice of waiting on a media kit or waiting on a certain number of followers. The time is NOW and the opportunity is NOW.

mini case studies…example emails

So, I did some Googling and found some of the most popular ways other people are telling you to pitch to brands. And I grabbed some of the email pitches I’ve received, too.

Let’s break down some email samples + how you can improve each one.

♡ 

the “shoot yourself in the foot before you even start” email

“Hi I’m Erica, I want to partner with Sunday Riley on my blog. I know I’m only starting out, but I would be really really honored to work with you. I don’t have as many followers as some people, but I have almost 1,400 followers on Instagram.

I would love to write about the Martian toner.”

So far, all you’ve done is argue against yourself. You’ve presented 2 great points as to why I don’t really want to work with you.

♡ what to do instead / / change the negative to positives

  • I’m a new blogger, so I haven’t partnered with any other brands, so my readers really trust my opinion.
  • My followers are increasing by 20% every month.

If you swap those two sentences, as a PR person, I’m going to see you as a new but promising blogger instead of just a flat out newbie asking me for a favor.

♡ 

the “flat out ask for free product 

Hi I’m Erica, I want to partner with Sunday Riley. I’m going to write a post about traveling to Italy on summer vacation and what skincare to bring along. Here are the products of yours and I’m interested in:

All that amounts to $90 worth of product. If you could send me that and an additional $50, I would love to write this post.

(PS – don’t you wish Sunday Riley products were that cheap??)

I’m not lying to you, I’ve seen REAL emails like this. All you’ve done is show me that you want free stuff and then you expect me to pay you when I have no clue who you are, what your blog is, or anything about you.

♡ what to do instead / / turn your specific demands into specific unique content

  • use those specifics – so you have 3 products in mind you want to write about. Great.
  • tell me how YOU specifically are going to drive different results for me – you’re going to Italy? cool. tell me how you’re going to bring my brand along and give me exposure.
  • have you worked with brands before? – if yes, let me know. let me know how the partnership went, let me know the sales, let me know the click through rates

♡ 

the “You’re putting the work on ME to figure out what to do with your blog”

Hi, my blog is Slightly Savvy and I would love to work with Sunday Riley.

Please let me know if you guys are interested in this!

With this, I have no clue what you’re really asking for. You’re putting it all on me to come up with ideas or figure out what you want. It also takes an additional email for me to respond back to you and be like what do you have in mind.

♡ what to do instead / / give me a unique idea I haven’t heard before

  • have a super specific idea already in mind – you want to do an oily skin care series, you want to include a Sunday Riley in a travel content piece on what to put in your carry-on followed up by taking Sunday Riley products through Italy…don’t always put it on the brand to come up with an idea
  • use your creativity – “I want to include Sunday Riley in a skincare post” isn’t a unique idea. “I want to include Sunday Riley in my anti-aging skin care story and breakdown the individual ingredients and why they work so well” IS a unique idea.

the perfect email

In a perfect world, I would get emails exactly like this. And perhaps they would also include a $10 Starbucks gift card.

I’m kidding, don’t bribe people.

But also not kidding, I would take a Starbucks gift card.

♡ 

if you’re new to working with brands 

Hey Katherine,

I’ve used Sunday Riley skincare for over a year now, and it worked wonders on my cystic acne, especially the Martian toner and ceramic cleanser. My readers also love hearing about the Sunday Riley brand, and I know many of them love your products, too.

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 ending 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.

Thanks,

Lauren

♡ 

if you have some partnerships under your belt

Hey Katherine,

I’ve used Sunday Riley skincare for over a year now, and it worked wonders on my cystic acne, especially the Martian toner and ceramic cleanser. My readers also love hearing about the Sunday Riley brand, and whenever I post about you guys, I get so many questions

I’ve worked before with brands like Drunk Elephant and Tatcha. With Drunk Elephant, I drove a 40% click through rate with $300 in product sales in 1 week. Over 6 months, they sold $2,000 in Drunk Elephant rise +glow serum.

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. 

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

Thanks,

Lauren

Try that + let me know how it works.

It’s short, sweet, gives me all the info I need in under 30 seconds.

Want Over 20 Email Templates Written By PR Insiders?

Me too.

I was getting hit up ALL the time on super specific scenarios from bloggers on pitching to brands. And in my 9-5 job, I see SO many pitches from bloggers that sadly miss the mark.

So, I created the ultimate Email Pitching Guide for Bloggers to Brands here.

Bailey nailed down over $1200 in brand collaborations.

Nicole pitched a brand and heard YES within 24 hours.

No matter how big or small your audience is, I built a pitch for you.

Here’s just a lil sample.

Each scenario details an exact email as well key points to remember and things to avoid….

  • if you’re new to working with brands
  • If you’ve worked with brands before
  • If you’re pitching yourself for a specific campaign
  • If you’re pitching yourself to smaller brands
  • If you’re a full-time blogger or have a 35k+ Instagram following
  • If you’re a full-time blogger with 100k+ Instagram followers reaching out to large brands
  • If you’re working through a PR agency who manages multiple brands/clients
  • If you’re re-pitching to a brand you’ve worked with before
  • If you have less than 5k Instagram followers
  • If you can find an exact contact for collaborations for a brand

Give it a try + let me know what you think.

I have a feeling you’re going to be as equally obsessed as the other bloggers who tried it out.

lylas,

katherine

 

Follow:
  • Jane Smith

    Thank you SO much for this information!

  • Megan

    I love all these tips! Thanks for sharing! I’m totally going to try these out.

  • Love how you shared concrete examples! Great post – found you through Sharon’s FB group 🙂

    Sher
    https://shershegoes.com

  • YESSS! Seriously, I want to send this to all of the horrible pitches I get for Forbes #SMH – NEVER put the work on the person you’re asking for a favor from!!

  • Aneeq Lon

    Oh wow! Amazing pitches. I will definitely post back one day when my following is big enough to pitch to a brand!

  • The Sunday Mode

    Such a helpful post, thank you! I feel like I definitely learnt a lot and where I’ve gone wrong in the past. I’ll take your advice and give things another go though 🙂

    Julia // The Sunday Mode

    • For sure girl! Give it another try because the worst thing they can say is no. Also, if you have a list of like 8 brands you want to pitch to, test out like 3 different templates/strategies for emailing them and see which one gets the best response.

  • teryn

    I have been looking for a post like this for TOO LONG! Not to sound like a spam comment, but I literally bookmarked it and will be coming back to read it again when needed. It’s so hard to start pitching to brands when there are hundreds of articles telling you different tips, but I love how short and sweet your tips are! Thank you for this post!
    Teryn – My blog’s at terynstravels.com 🙂

    • Haha thank you, that’s so amazing!! Yeah, I’m over the other articles telling you different tips that I look at and I’m like”……that’s the worst idea.” Thanks so much for reading this!!

  • Hey Katherine,

    Awesome post, with the perfect amount of information. Thanks for sharing your sample email, this is soooo helpful.

    Much appreciated,

    Nadalie

  • Great info here! Would you attach your media kit after the initial email (in a follow up after they express interest) or in the initial pitch email? I’ve heard it both ways! I’m interested in what kind of media kit you like to see as well – mine is 3 pages but not overly wordy and super easy to read!

    Kirsten | The Wandering Brunette

    • Hey girl! Honestly, I don’t think you need a media kit. If you tell me everything important in an email like the example, I don’t need to see a media kit.

      If you do want to go for it though, I would send it in like a next email where you guys are talking specifics. Especially if you guys are talking price and you’re really trying to make a case for yourself 🙂

  • Brewing Up Style

    All great tips! Your emails are really professional and perfect to pitch to brands.

    – Katie

  • Deanna Michelle

    So much great info here! I am definitely saving this for future reference!!

  • LOVE this post! These tips were really informative, definitely going to implementing these into our email pitches! 🙂

    xo, Chloe // http://funinthecloset.com/witch-favorite-color/

  • Moe

    Great advice – this is something I’m trying to get in on! But I didn’t have any clue where to start. Can’t wait to implement some of these!

  • GIRL! I absolutely love this series. I couldn’t agree more with everything you said here. Working in PR myself, I get emails from influencers daily – and I love nothing more than someone who truly shows their interest in the brand/client, who comes up with ideas (that shows creativity + that the person knows what they’re doing!) I think the key here is to make it easier for brands/PRs 🙂 amazing info Katherine, loved it!!

    Flora x
    http://www.mademoiselleworld.com

    • Girl thank you so much for checking this out!! I would actually love to get some insider info from you too on travel PR. Going to DM you on Insta in a bit

  • You don’t know how long I’ve needed a post like this! Haha
    This is the first one I’ve read where I actually feel confident enough to take the steps outlined here and do something with them. So many other bloggers who write posts like these (on pitching to brands) withhold info like they don’t want to divulge all their secrets…it can get frustrating for people just starting out.

    Not to sound spammy, buuuut I’m definitely saving this for future reference. 😉

    SO appreciative of this, Katherine! Can’t wait for the next part of this series.

  • Suze

    Loved the specific examples that you gave and I have a follow-up question, how do you calculate your blog engagement? Are you looking at bounce rate on Google Analytics?

    • That’s one of the things I would look at, yes. I would also look at time on site and returning visitors percentage. Those stats are going to help show that your readers are engaged with your content, reading it thoroughly, and returning. That’ll make your brand really valuable from a brand’s perspective – what more does a brand want than to connect their product with an actual real, engaged audience?

  • This is such a helpful post! Love being able to hear what the PR side is looking for – it’s definitely an insight we don’t get much of!

  • Thanks Katherine. I really liked the case studies with your suggestions for turning them around. We’ll work some new pitches from these insights for sure. Hope all well in your busy world 🙂

    • Hey Colin! Nice, so glad they could help a bit! I know we’ve come across each other on FB so always DM me if you need something!

  • Natasha Lynn Brown

    Thank you so much for sharing your insider tips and insight!!

  • Love these thoughts and ideas!! Thanks for sharing the email templates, too!

  • Michelle/cocowouldapprove.com

    I love your blog. Your marketing info is the best. Thank You

    • Thanks Michelle, that means a lot to me! I love sharing it and getting all of these ideas out of my head 🙂

  • Ophalyn Lee

    Nice! Thank you for this:) I saved it. Very very useful!

    XOXO
    mamalounj.com

  • Great ideas! Thanks so much for sharing 🙂 I love the layout of your site as well

  • Nicole Stone

    I love this! So helpful. I’m actually bookmarking it!

    • I’m SO glad it helped! Let me know if you need any additional info when you start reaching out to brands xoxo

  • Julie Greer Chickery

    Thanks for the tips and the examples! Super helpful!

  • kathycakebread

    These were really useful, definitely gonna be a bit more specific in my pitches in future!
    http://www.glitzandglamourmakeup.co.uk