I have received so many emails recently asking how to secure sponsorship for conferences. But before we address what you should do to approach companies, I’d like talk about why having a media kit is an important part of crafting your pitch.
Media kits are documents with relevant blog information and stats that you can present to companies or individuals interested in working with you. If you are asking a company to sponsor you at a conference, it’s very likely that they will ask for a media kit or some form of documentation that explains a bit more about your blog and its placement online.
Now don’t get anxious if you have only been blogging for a short time and don’t even know what stats are. Even if you don’t have stats, that’s okay because there are plenty of other things you can include in your media kit to help explain why companies should partner with you.
Here are some things you may want to include in your media kit:
It’s a good idea to personalize your front page with your blog logo, name, colors, blog URL, and any other contact information you’d like to include, such as your Twitter name or Facebook fan page. By personalizing the first page people see, it helps with your blog branding.
This is the section where you’ll want to explain what your blog is about. What topics are you likely to write about and what is the basis of your blog? Feel free to include any information about yourself, the author of the blog, if it is relevant to the blog description.
Why Should Companies Work With You?
I include this section in my own media kit because it’s a good way to express what makes you different than every other blogger. This section should be succinct and to the point. Take some time to brainstorm before you write it to decide how you can express to companies why working with you is a good idea and what sets you apart. Everybody has something that makes them and their blog unique!
Companies want to know who reads your blog to decide if your blog is a good fit for their products or services. If the company you are pitching to sells baby products, yet most of your readers have children aged five and older, the company probably won’t see the benefit of partnering with you as your readers likely won’t be interested in their products.
In order to gather this data, you can create a simple and free survey using websites such as Survey Monkey. You’ll want to ask about age, annual household income, number of children, and employment status. You may also include questions on relationship status and highest level of education. This survey is completely anonymous and people can choose a range versus an exact number for questions regarding annual income and age, making it feel less intrusive. There are other questions you can include in the survey, but these give you a starting point. If it’s information you believe will help explain why you are a good fit with companies, include it in your demographics survey.
Place a link to the survey on your blog and/or in a tweet and encourage your readers to take a few minutes to help you gather information. If you find your aren’t getting a decent response, you can hold a giveaway for those who do participate.
In this section, you’ll include statistics such as average number of monthly visitors (overall and unique) , pageviews, and total number of blog subscribers. You may also want to include your blog’s bounce rate, Google PageRank, Alexa rating, in-bound links, Twitter followers, and Facebook fans.
If you don’t have many stats, don’t panic. It takes time to compile them, but include the ones you do have such as subscribers, Twitter followers, and Facebook fans. (Some of you may be wondering what some of the other stats are and where you can find them. To explain that in-depth, I’d have to write another separate post, so if you have questions, leave a comment and I can do a follow-up post to offer more insight.)
In this section, list any affiliations you have with other blogs, such as where you contribute posts, groups you’ve started on other sites, or sites where you are extremely active.
Advertising Options/Payment Guidelines/Policies
Here is where you’ll list your advertising rates, options, and policies. If you are just beginning to allow advertising on your blog, you can start off by offering a simple 125×125 advertising size (which is the standard blog button size), but open the door to discussion other advertising options. Many companies prefer “above the fold” advertising spots. This means, they prefer that their ad is visible without having to scroll down on your page. The portion you can’t see when you first land on your blog is considered “below the fold.”
You’ll also want to include how people can pay you (i.e. PayPal), when you need to be paid by, and what the policy is if you don’t receive payment.
Not sure what to charge for advertising? Need a bit more insight into working with brands? Check out my recent post on these topics, with links to examples of advertising rates based on your blog’s stats/size.
Other Optional Sections
I have a few other sections in my personal blog media kit.
In this section, I outline why giveaways are a valuable marketing tool, my policies, and what kinds of products I am willing to consider for giveaways.
- Product Reviews
Similar to the giveaway section, I explain my product review policies.
- Other Advertising Options
Since I welcome conference sponsorships, I overview why this opportunity is a fabulous option for companies and encourage them to consider it.
Having a media kit prepared is a great tool to help you secure conference sponsorship. Especially if you are pitching to a larger company, it’s very likely you will be asked for a media kit or a way to share more about your blog, audience, and stats.
If you are looking for a template to use as a guide, feel free to check out these fabulous resources.
And as always, if you have questions, leave a comment here or flag me on Twitter by using #ConferenceNewbie.