Every content creator wants to attract clients, land paid deals, and find opportunities organically.
Even though nowadays that is very possible through platforms like Instagram and Linkedin, it can be quite frustrating when you’re putting out all the work and effort to create high-quality content but no one reaches out to you.
Believe me, I’ve been there too!
Luckily, it’s not the end of the world. Sometimes opportunities knock on your door, but most of the time you have to go looking and knocking on those doors.
And how can you do this?
What does 'pitching' mean?
There are actually various meanings for pitching, but for this post, I am going to be focusing on a marketing pitch.
In simple words, a marketing pitch is a line of talk used to persuade someone about a specific topic.
For example, in business, a team usually has to pitch a project or idea to investors or directors to be approved.
Thus, pitching is basically knowing how to sell yourself as a content creator to gain new clients or to promote your services.
The two types of content creator pitches
There are two types of content creators - those who want to promote their services or business (photography services, social media services, graphic design services, writing services, etc).
And the ones that want to work directly with brands to create content for them and promote their products.
In any case, the pitching process is very similar. In the end, pitching could be considered an art to master that incorporates storytelling, a bit of sales knowledge, being proactive, and moreover a lot of determination.
How to pitch yourself as a freelance content creator offering services
If you are a freelance content creator or you aspire to be one, you must know that freelancing and pitching go hand in hand.
Even if you think you can get a lot of referrals, knowing how to pitch is always essential.
For example, if you find yourself in a situation where you’ve lost most of your clients you can start pitching to new ones to establish new relationships.
This is what you should be keeping in mind when pitching as a freelance content creator:
1. Make it personal
Always add a personal touch to your pitch. This will help you differentiate yourself from others.
Make sure you have done some research about the business or person you’re pitching to and be strategic.
You can visit their website and find relevant work like blog posts and mention it in your pitch either by praising or giving feedback. Always add your opinion to personalize the pitch.
2. Focus on their needs
The pitch shouldn’t focus on you but on them!
Yes, you need to prove to the client that you have experience and capabilities, but most of your focus should go on how you are going to be helping them solve their problems and overcome their obstacles.
Remember that people usually hire freelancers to provide a service that will help them solve a problem. Whether it is because they don’t have the time or the skills, you are there to help them fill that gap.
3. Always include work proof
Yes, this one might sound obvious, but still, some people forget to do it.
You can include examples of other client’s works, success cases, your work portfolio, or even your social media profiles. Including some social proof always helps too.
If you have a website, make sure to include a link to it!
Bonus tip: Include testimonials or links to your testimonials page from past clients to add even more credibility.
4. Give a free tip or suggestion!
This comes from the idea of serving before you collect. This can provide your prospects with a glimpse of what you can make and will certainly help your pitch stand out.
If you are a social media manager, you can suggest something in which they could improve their Instagram strategy. It could be as simple as optimizing their bio with the right keywords.
If you are a writer you can offer 2 or 3 ideas of a relevant topic that you would love to write for them.
Offering help will always add extra value to your pitching and will certainly make you stand out from other people that don’t do it.
5. Go the extra mile and find the marketing or HR email
If you’re pitching to an agency or company, make sure to find the right email. Sending it to general ones will probably make your email get lost.
Search on LinkedIn or even on the company’s Instagram account - they usually use the marketing department email address on the email button.
6. Follow up
Make sure to have a follow-up strategy with different value points at each follow-up. Most of the time you won’t receive an answer right away.
You will have to insist, but make sure to insist the right way.
How can you pitch yourself as a content creator or influencer that wants to work with brands?
If your plan is to pitch to brands to get paid partnerships, the process is quite similar. Just a few little tweaks.
1. Know the brand from A to Z
If you are pitching to a brand, make sure it’s a brand you love. You should know their mission, values, and ethos. It should align with yours too.
Make sure their niche and target audience is the same, or at least very very similar to yours.
If it’s a brand that you have been following for a while now you can start making posts about them. This will help them see you are a true advocate and will help you win some points.
2. Make it personal, but keep it professional
This point is very similar to pitching to freelance clients. You need to be able to differentiate yourself and stand out from other pitches.
Being personal doesn’t mean you can’t be professional, though. Remember you are the owner of your own business, and you should act like one. Be confident and do not devaluate yourself. Know your worth and stand up for it.
Always pitch with confidence to show your value, knowledge, and skills.
Use your copywriting skills to tell them how working with you is going to be different than with other creators.
3. Focus on their mission and values (give a compliment as a plus)
If you did your research or have been following a brand for a while, you should know what its mission and values are.
Use your storytelling skills to mention this when you get in touch and explain how their mission and values align with yours and with your audience.
This will show them that you went the extra step too.
4. Offer more than just photos
The more you offer, the more value they will see on working with you. If you are good at creating videos, writing, or even designing, find ways in which you can leverage your other skills for the collaboration.
Most brands tend to have a blog, so offering to guest post on their blogs is always a really good tactic both for them and for you, as it will link back to your website and Instagram account.
Are you good at marketing too? Why not proposing a whole social media and content marketing campaign instead of just a few photos?
If you have an email list, this could be seen as something very valuable for brands too.
5. Include your media kit and portfolio
Brands will always ask for your media kit. They want to make sure your audience matches theirs, your engagement rates, etc Have this ready so they don’t have to do any extra work.
Include all the relevant links they need to your portfolio, website, etc. Make it as easy as possible for the brand.
6. Find the brand’s marketing or PR email
Same as with pitching to a freelance client, you have to find the right contact email.
I know some of you might already work with influencer platforms, but I would say to contact the brands directly always. It’s much more personal and professional.
You can find these emails on their website, Instagram page, or even on Linkedin.
7. Follow up
Have your follow-up strategy ready to make sure you’re staying on top of their heads (and inbox!) but do it wisely!
Having a pitching strategy is essential for any kind of content creator to start getting clients and deals.
It might be a bit difficult at the beginning, but after a few pitches, it gets much easier and you start getting more confident in pitching and negotiating.
Remember there are more than 20 ways to monetize social media, this is only one way of doing it.
If you want to learn more about creating pitching and follow-up strategies I will be giving a free masterclass in my private support group for content creators on Facebook. Make sure to join if you haven’t done it yet!
If you are looking for a personalized approach, I am officially launching my first series of 1:1 coaching for content creators who want to take their Instagram and social media to the next level and start monetizing it like pros!