I didn’t start blogging to fund my triathlon hobby, but it’s no secret that it’s certainly evolved in that way through various forms of sponsorship and collaborations.
I document my training on a daily basis across my social platforms, I review races and kit and make videos and blogs dedicated to the topic – a lot of work and time goes into this content, and although I do it because I love it, it is nice that it’s now at a point where I can get some perks back in return for my efforts.
One of my most frequently asked questions is “How did you become a Liv ambassador”, so I thought I would do a post with some tips on how to gain ambassador partnerships/sponsorships or just generally improve your content.
Firstly, my background is PR and my ‘day job’ is creating content for brands/athletes/influencers etc. so I have a fair bit of experience in the industry of marketing – making it pretty natural for me to get into.
What’s your message?
When starting your socials/channels, you need to have a clear idea of why you’re putting out the content that you are (to pay for your hobby or make money is not the kind of thing I mean!). For example, mine actually started to promote my first business venture. It was a food product and I wanted my content to portray how I used the natural food source to fuel my training.
Over the years it’s definitely evolved, and now it’s basically to encourage anyone and everyone into sport/exercise, to challenge themselves beyond what they think they can achieve, and hopefully motivate people to push themselves… normal people who had a day job and social life and aren’t going to be world class athletes. I share the honest truths of the days when I can’t be arsed, when I have skipped sessions because of a hangover, and also the days when I nail it and manage 8-hour brick sessions, hoping it helps someone to feel better or work harder.
You need to build engagement rather than focus on a following – I’d much rather have 10 followers who care what I’m saying then 100 who don’t give a shit about triathlon… that wouldn’t benefit any brands who would collaborate with me.
Creating content which people can interact with and also you will benefit from is a great way to build an engaged audience – I learn so much from so many people who respond to my questions and I’m also inspired/motivated on the daily by people in this online community.
I do feel a shift happening on Instagram as people seem to be concerned that their beautifully curated content doesn’t seem relatable, however the marketeer in me tells me that people will always love a well put together video or image. I personally like my stories to be as-they-are, un-edited and in real-time, but I like my feed posts to look like something you want to click onto to read the caption. If you really want to get noticed, invest time into this part and constantly try to improve it. I’m lucky that I photograph and make content for a living, but I will still hire a photographer on occasion.
Don’t be afraid to ask
Not every brand is going to come knocking at your door asking to work with you or send you bikes… a lot of the time it’s up to you to go after what you want. My advice here is to really think about how you can add value to them and why they would want to work with you – what are you offering that’s going to benefit them, and why should they go with you over anyone else? Go to them with ideas!
I’m not the biggest, most successful blogger in the world by any means, but I still can’t believe some of the brands and opportunities I’ve had, and people I have met through this little blog and community. Hopefully you found this useful, and if you ever need a photographer/content creator to up your game, you know where I am!