Blogging Advice

Getting Your First Collab As a Blogger: 8 Things You Should Do

Affiliate links | Most bloggers (okay, all bloggers, don’t lie) dream of working with brands. Even now, 7 years into blogging, I still get a buzz when I work with a particularly cool brand or get a really good collaboration offer. It can be frustrating as a new blogger when you’re waiting for that first collab to get the ball rolling. But there are some things you can do to make that ball roll a bit faster.

Getting Your First Collab As a Blogger

Photo by Corinne Kutz on Unsplash

Brand collabs don’t just land in your lap. Trust me. I wish they did. You really do have to put the work in and when you’re just getting started with wanting to work with brands, it can seem like so much work for nothing in return.

Getting your first collab as a blogger takes time, patience and most importantly… effort.

There’s no getting around that bit… sorry. But there are plenty of things you can be doing in the mean time to really boost your chances of getting that first collab sooner and make sure your blog is as squeaky clean as possible! So enough rambling, let’s get into it.

Want some tips on getting that first collab as a blogger? Here are 8 important things you should work on and take note of. Grab a cuppa, a bit of cake, a sandwich – it’s a long one!

Educate yourself on brand collabs first

Knowledge is power my friend. And when you’re a new blogger, it can be SO EASY to say yes anything and everything. BUT, not all collaborations are worth it. Not all collaborations are fair. And not all collaborations deserve your time. Educate yourself and do a bit of a research on the different TYPES of collaborations you might be offered – perhaps even ask around for some advice.

And definitely check out this post I wrote last year on things to look out for as a new blogger when working with brands. It covers some of the real nitty gritty things that you’re really going to need to keep an eye out for so you don’t fall into the same naive trap that so many of us have.

Have a media kit ready for getting your first collab as a blogger

I saw a tweet the other day from some gal who said she’d just been contacted by a brand wanting to work with her and they asked for her media kit and she didn’t have one and I just felt like going GIRLLLLL what you playing at? Its so handy to have your media kit ready to go. Even if you won’t need it for a while, who cares. Get on that, pronto.

A media kit is a like a CV for your blog. It allows you to show off a bit and showcase what your blog is all about, your stats and any brands you’ve worked with previous (which obviously might not apply if you’re reading this post). You can make a banging media kit on Canva for absolutely NOTHING. And I wrote a post here, explaining how to make a free media kit and exactly what you should be including in your media kit too.

Learn how to pitch to brands early

Wish I’d taken my own advice with this one, to be honest. Pitching wasn’t something that entered my vocabulary until like, a year or two ago. Shame on me. Pitching might seem super scary, ESPECIALLY if you’re a new blogger. But the sooner you get learning how to pitch and get used to it, the better. Because it only gets easier. Trust me.

The best resource I’d recommend if you want to learn exactly how to pitch to brands is the eBook from Jenna Farmer, (aff) Blog To Business: Your Pitching Toolkit. It’s well worth the money and you’ll learn such valuable tips from someone who’s had the successes from pitching to brands herself.

Oh and you also get 10% off using the code JENNY! Grab your copy here!

Work on your blog views and engagement

Different brands will want different things from their collaborations. So the best thing to do is work on your blog as a whole package (which you should be doing anyway) rather than one small area. Blog views are important because that means your post is being seen by more people. Engagement is important because it means the people who are reading your post are well, engaged. Obviously.

I know it’s rubbish to hear but most brands won’t work with bloggers who are getting 20 blog views a month. It’s just not worth their time, effort and money. So setting yourself up with a good foundation before you start thinking about getting your first collab as a blogger is a sensible idea.

Pinterest is excellent for accelerating those blog views. I’ve not quite mastered Pinterest yet but I’m getting there, after taking a lot of time to learn and practice. Check out the (aff) Pinterest With Ell course for everything you need to know about making Pinterest work for your blog!

Related: A Beginners Guide To Growing Your Blog Following

SEO the sh*t out of your blog

I’m not going to get into DA too much as I have a WHOLE blog post about domain authority but just to summerize, a domain authority is a number given to any blog with it’s own domain which indicates how it ranks on Google. A blog will probably have a DA between 5-55. Only websites like Wikipedia or Facebook will have anything close to 100.

But the truth of the matter is, most brands want to work with bloggers with a specific DA score. So when it comes to getting your first collab as a blogger, it’s worth working on your domain authority to get it to at least 20. Websites like Get Blogged, which I use regularly, work on a DA basis. The higher the DA, the more you get paid.

Now, SEO. This is where it gets real juicy. SEO can TRANSFORM your blog views. So this point ties in nicely with the one above. It’s well worth getting clued up on SEO early and making your blog as SEO friendly as possible, as early as possible. Good SEO practices = more blog views = better stats = more brand collaborations.

Keyword research is one of the key components of having a good SEO practice. It sounds complicated but when it’s broken down, it makes a lot of sense. I’d recommend checking out the (aff) Keyword Research eBook by Nele van Hout, as that girl knows her stuff.

Refine your “voice” and USP

Look, there are a LOT of bloggers out there. A lot. There’s room for everyone of course but when it comes to getting your first collab as a blogger, you need to stand out. You need to have something that a brand will look at and think “oooh, I want to contact them”, over say 50 other bloggers they might be looking at too. Your niche is important but what’s even MORE important is your USP (unique selling point) and your unique voice.

Are you particularly funny and can you put a funny spin on your blog content? Are you a particularly talented photographer? Or are you super knowledgeable about a certain subject? All these things matter when it comes to finding your voice and your USP. And the more refined that is, the more brands will know if they want to work with you.

Don’t sleep on social media

Social media is a brands paradise. You can find a ton of blogging opportunities on Twitter, Facebook groups to join and handy advice on Pinterest which will all help you on your way to getting your first collab as a blogger. First things first, making sure your social media platforms are set up correctly. Make sure your:

  • Branding is consistent
  • Your usernames are consistent
  • Your blog URL and EMAIL ADDRESS is in your bio
  • Not causing drama all over the place and putting brands off wanting to come near you
  • And make sure you’re active!

And when it comes to actually finding blogging opportunities and brands to work with, social media can be a goldmine. I’d recommend starting with the #bloggerswanted hash tag on Twitter. You can find more about how and where to look for blogging opportunities in this post!

And lastly, be patient

It can be super frustrating, especially as a new blogger, when you see other bloggers getting brand collaborations. Heck even now, after 7 years of this gig, I still get a bit green with envy when I see other bloggers working with brands I could only dream of being contacted by. But hey, it’s okay. It’s human nature to feel these things.

My advice for a blogger waiting on their first collab, is just be patient. It will come, as long as you’re putting the time, effort and work in. Blogging is hard work – that much is obvious. But hard work pays off, trust me. A little bit of self belief never hurt anyone.

Are you working on getting that first collab as a blogger? Have you recently had your first collab as a blogger? What advice would you give new bloggers?

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148 Comments

  1. Great post! There are is a lot of info here for new bloggers! That being said, I need to redo my media kit! >.<

  2. Life With Lyv says:

    Love this!! All such great information for someone who is just starting out like myself… Love referring back to all your posts about blogging! Thanks for sharing! xx

  3. This post is really helpful! I was lucky enough to be contacted by one brand last year, but I definitely need to up my game to get more collaborations. I admit that I don’t have a media kit so I will get on that! I’d never heard of Get Blogged before so I’m going to check that out.

    1. Get Blogged are a really good place to start!

  4. Thank you for the tips Jenny! I’m bookmarking this one for when I’m a little further down the road on my blogging journey.

    1. Hope you find it helpful when the time comes!

  5. Thank you so much for all the information😊😊It is really helpful..

    1. I’m glad 🙂

  6. Getting an offer for a collaboration always feel great. Totally agree with you about how not all collabs are the same. Some make you go through too many hoops for such a low pay. YESSS on refining your voice!! Thanks for sharing all of these tips!

    Nancy ♥ exquisitely.me

    1. I agree. They’re just not worth it, some of them!

  7. This was really helpful thank you! I am going to get started on a media kit right away, I need to start building myself more! Definitely going to be referring back to these tips though, thank you so much ☺️🤍

    1. You’re very welcome!

  8. I’m looking for a guide to help me do my first collab post and this is helpful. I’m going to follow it, thank you for sharing it!

    1. You’re welcome!

  9. You are right in saying pitching is scary for people like me who have never reached out with themselves before. It is so easy to feel you are not good enough, and sometimes it is true that you need to put in a little extra work, as I learned when I queried my novel a couple years back.

    Once you reach out, though, it gets easier every time. It is about finding the people that make me say “yes!”
    Thanks for sharing!

    1. It sure does get easier every time! All it takes is practice!

  10. Great tips! I’ve been lucky to have a couple of brand opportunities where brands came to me but would really love to get to a place where I’m pitching brands professionally and often. I’ve been meaning to make a media kit forever and keep putting it off. Time to finally do it!

    1. Yessss, hope you get around to it soon!

  11. This was so interesting !!

    1. Thanks x

  12. This is a great and informative post!

    Thanks so much 🙂 Gives me lots of things to work on!

    1. I’m glad you found it helpful 🙂

  13. Love all these tips, especially about making your socials consistent and finding your voice. I bloody wish SEO wasn’t on the list as we all know what a pain in the arse that is haha! Thanks for the useful post lovely. Hannah | http://www.hannahshappyhour.com

    1. Haha don’t mention it! I hate SEO and anything like that but sadly it DOES help!

  14. I love that buzz when you get a really awesome brand working with you! I definitely didn’t create my media kit early enough (though I do have one now, which has been so useful) and I really wish I’d done a lot more research at first, as I turned into a bit of a Yes (wo)Man which wasn’t good! Learnt my lesson though, and now working with brands feels a lot less stressful.

    1. Same, I don’t think that buzz ever really goes!

  15. Such a helpful post. I didn’t even know what’s the media kit so will be reading that next. Thank you Jenny

    1. Hope you found it helpful!

  16. aimsysantics says:

    This is great advice! I have been blogging since 2017, but never really took it that seriously until last year. I have been lucky enough to have been paid for one collab with the others being gifted, but that is ok with me. Definitely gives you experience with working with brands. Also, shamed to admit that my media kit is well out of date, really must update it! Oh, and DA is another ball game, will deffo be checking out your post on that! 😂

    Thanks for sharing!

    Aimsy xoxo
    Aimsy’s Antics

    1. Hope you find my DA post helpful!

  17. Such great advice. You really know your stuff. As a new blogger this is very helpful.

    1. Thank you very much!

  18. Great post! Am definitely taking notes from this guide.

    1. Glad you found it helpful!

  19. Ooh this is so inspiring. I’ve never really taken that leap, mainly because I’m still on a free plan so things like DA is something I’ve never looked up (am I being totally oblivious here – you can’t do that on a free one, right?) but I do still get really excited when I get a new review request land in my inbox. But this is full of such good tips – thanks!

    1. Yeah if you don’t have your own domain then DA won’t apply to you yet! 🙂

      1. Glad I had that right. One day I’ll make that leap…

  20. Great post! Am taking notes from this guide.

  21. This has really inspired me to make a media kit. Just started blogging again but this way I can use it to motivate myself to stay consistent. loved the post 🙂

    Brynn I Brynnie.com

    1. Absolutely 🙂

  22. Rebekka kaur says:

    I love this! This is so useful! Bookmarking this post of yours and also subscribed! Didn’t know there is a thing called media kit before I came across your post! Thanks 😊
    http://www.rebekkakaur.com

    1. Glad you found it helpful!

  23. These are great tips! Perfect for new bloggers, sharing this on Pinterest for my followers!!

    1. Thanks very much!

  24. You always give such amazing, helpful advice! I’m working on DA and views at the moment as I’d like to start pitching soon.
    I definitely need to get my media kit sorted next.
    Thanks for the great advice! ❤️

    1. You’re welcome! Glad you found it helpful!

  25. What a fab post! This is so useful and something I’ve been needing to read recently. Thanks so much for sharing your advice about this! ☺️

    1. You’re welcome!

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