So, you’ve set up a YouTube channel, and already have a sizable fan following. What’s the next thing on your list of desires?
If you answered “getting sponsorship on YouTube,” then you’re right on target. For most YouTubers, getting a few good sponsorships can be the difference between channel success and fading into the oblivion of anonymity.
Whether you have a small channel, you need to make sure you have quality content. This is a great way to get sponsors.
But getting sponsors is easier said than done, and this is the step where most wannabe YouTube stars falter. However, you don’t have to worry about this because you’ve got us by your side to help out!
In this guide, we’ve addressed the important points on how to get sponsored on YouTube. After going through the following, you’ll have no trouble raking in the brand deals that you need to succeed.
So, let’s hit the play button and get going.
In case you’re new to the YouTube scene, you might not have a clear idea about YouTube sponsorships. That’s why, before getting into the meat of the matter, we’d like to take some time to discuss what YouTube sponsorships are and how they work.
Put simply, a YouTube sponsorship is a creative collaboration between a YouTuber and a brand, which results in mutually beneficial results. While the brand gains enhanced exposure from the promotional material that the YouTuber creates, the content creators get paid for their efforts.
While this may seem to be a simple enough process on the face of it all, there’s more going on behind the scenes.
One of the most significant factors in getting sponsored on YouTube is your audience base, which needs to be relevant to the brand you’re targeting. Unless you have a suitable fan following, to begin with, brands might not want to connect with you.
At this point, a natural question arises: what exactly do sponsors look for in YouTubers before getting hitched (in a business relationship, of course!)? In the following section, we are going to address just that.
There was a time when only the high and mighty among celebrity influencers could hope of getting lucrative sponsorships. However, with the growing demand for influencer marketing and the rise of the micro-influencer trend, even small channels can now bag big-ticket brands.
According to the latest figures, the influencer marketing industry is slated to grow to the tune of $15 billion by 2022. With that kind of growth, it’s no wonder that brands are vying to jump onto the influencer bandwagon.
For YouTubers, this spells a unique opportunity, one that makes getting profitable sponsorships for even small YouTube channels possible. But small doesn’t spell all, and there are a few things that you, as a content creator on YouTube, need to ensure before reaching out to brands for sponsorships.
Let’s see what they are.
The very first thing that sponsors look for when selecting a channel is a coherent persona that aligns with their own. Brand compatibility is one of the major factors that any sponsor will look for before signing the dotted line.
In general, sponsors look for YouTubers who share their brand values and belong to the same or complementary industries. For a great example, take Markiplier, a game vlogger with close to 30 million subscribers.
One glance at his channel, and you’ll know that the guy’s persona resonates with gamers who play for entertainment. With such a consistent persona, it’s no wonder he’ll get sponsored by video game companies and related brands.
That’s why, before reaching out to sponsors, make sure your channel persona is consistent and coherent with the niche you’re trying to target.
The next important thing that sponsors are going to look for in a YouTube channel is its target audience. Brands always align with influencers who have a fan following that matches with their target demographic.
Another factor that may influence whether you get a good sponsor is the number of subscribers you have. While not everyone can be PewDiePie, you still need to have a sizable chunk of people following you. The minimum threshold for this will vary from industry to industry.
At the end of the day, a sponsor will only want to work with you if your content is appealing to their target demographic. After all, it doesn’t make sense for a fashion brand to sponsor a culinary tutorial (unless you make designer pastries, that is)!
This, of course, goes without saying. Excellent, attention-grabbing, and engaging quality content is what draws in the sponsors and viewers.
Naturally, unless your content library measures up to the standard, you’re not going to get either.
That’s why it’s essential that before reaching out to sponsors, you perform a qualitative and quantitative audit of your YouTube content. Ask yourself, would you sit through this if it were on someone else’s channel?
A quick aside: Want to know how to grab more YouTube views fast? Check out this video below to know more!
In case you find your content to be below the mark, make sure you build up a sound content library before looking for sponsors. That way, when the potential brands you’re targeting look you up, they’ll have something to go “Wow!” about.
Another critical aspect that YouTubers need to take care of is their profile. Having a complete and professional profile that matches your brand persona is essential to YouTube success.
Make sure that your channel art is consistent, catchy, and matches the theme of the quality content you put out. Plus, keep your contact information, such as a valid business email, up-to-date, as this is the primary means by which sponsors will contact you.
Finally, ensure that you don’t violate any YouTube community guidelines and regulations. In case you’re not up to speed with the latest guidelines, please spend some time here and get them straight. This is essential as any violations can lead to losing your sponsorships or even getting your channel banned from the platform.
Got all that jotted down? Good, now it’s time to move on to the next phase in the sponsor hunting game. And this time, we’re going to show you how to take that most important step, which is...
The task of getting sponsorships doesn’t end with creating a famous (or thereabouts) channel.
You’ve got to take steps to ensure that you get noticed. Considering that there are over 31 million YouTube channels currently, you can’t sit in the hopes that sponsors will come to you. At least, not when you’re just starting out.
That’s why you’ve got to be proactive and reach out to the sponsors. While you can always take the email or social media route, as of 2020, there are several convenient platforms that can help you reach out to YouTube sponsors professionally. Below, we’ve listed some of the better ones.
This is a platform that has been extensively used by YouTubers to set up successful online careers. Grapevine caters to both creators and brands and helps the two connect in a safe and trustful environment.
The catch is that to use Grapevine, you’ll need a minimum of 2,000 subscribers on your YouTube channel. But once you cross that threshold, you can unlock the marketplace and access a large number of sponsorship opportunities under the same umbrella.
When working with Grapevine, you can accept payment in two forms. The first involves getting paid in kind through products that you have to review. The second, of course, involves sponsorships where you get paid in real dollars.
Yet another collaboration platform, channel pages, allows you to strike up successful collabs with other YouTube creators and gain paid sponsorships. Whether you’re a YouTuber looking for partnerships or sponsors, Channel Pages has something to offer.
Channel Pages allows you to search for collaborations and sponsorships based on a wide variety of criteria such as channel location, target demographics, or even audience size. Just sync your YouTube channel with the platform and get going!
Joining Channel Pages is free, and there are no subscriber thresholds that you need to maintain. The platform caters to a wide variety of niches, and as a result, appeals to an equally large base of creators and brands.
Previously known as FameBit, YouTube BrandConnect is the latest and biggest platform by YouTube to help Content Creators and Brands connect with each other. Through the BrandConnect platform, both YouTubers and businesses can make the process of sponsorships simple, secure, and actually fun!
BrandConnect offers a number of tools and measurement solutions that enable both sides to collaborate better. What’s more, it even allows the viewers to buy products and download apps that are being described in the videos directly from the watch page.
To top it all off, the platform has also introduced augmented reality-based product-experiences that allow consumers to try the products virtually before buying.
The only caveat: you’ve got to have more than 25,000 subscribers on YouTube to be eligible for the service. For a complete overview of the platform, please view this tutorial.
Now that you know about the different channels for...But wait!
We’ve been talking about product promotions and paid sponsorships. But we haven’t really taken out the time to describe the different kinds of sponsorships that you can get on YouTube, have we?
Knowing what you want out of the deal is essential to the process. In the next segment, we’re going to take a look at the three main types of sponsorships that you can strike up on YouTube.
This is the least profitable form of YouTube sponsorship, but it is the best way to start if you have a new channel with a small number of subscribers. In this model, you need to include affiliate links to products or services in your video description.
When a viewer clicks the affiliate links and makes a purchase, you get a commission. This amount is going to be small, but if you gather a large number of followers, you can surely make a good amount within a short time.
We already touched upon this in an earlier section. In this type of sponsorship, you get paid in the form of products that you have to review. This can range from unboxing videos and how-to videos, to complete user guides.
Product payment sponsorships must be niche specific, and you need to develop a considerable audience base to be successful at it. Also, since you’re not getting paid in good ol’ dollars, you’ll have to decide what to do with the products that you receive.
This one, as they say, is the real deal! Here you’re directly paid by brands and businesses to advertise their products and services on your YouTube channel. However, the catch is that getting paid sponsorships can be tough with a small subscriber base.
Also, since you’re hired by the business to promote their offerings, they will have specific demands and guidelines that you’ll have to follow. However, once you get the hang of it, there’s no limit to how much you can earn in this model.
If you read the information above, it will ultimately depend on what kind of sponsorship you choose to get. If you go with using affiliate links, you will likely be using Amazon for the most part and you would get around 1-3% of the product price.
There are other affiliates you can use, but Amazon is the one you typically see the most.
You can also choose to receive products as payments from sponsors where you will either feature the product in your video, talk about it, or review it. You get to keep the product for pretty much showcasing it. This is nice for those that like getting free merchandise.
Lastly, the one everyone prefers, is getting paid directly from sponsors. The amount you get from this can vary based on the sponsor/brand and how much they feel you are worth to them.
You will also need to use time in your video to typically talk about them as well. I can't provide a monetary value for this as it all depends on what is agreed upon by both parties.
With that, we hope you’re now ready to start raking in the YouTube sponsorships. But as usual, we advise you to start small and not bite off more than you can chew. Begin with affiliate sponsors, then work your way up the ladder to products and then paid sponsorships.
Like everything, building a follower base on YouTube and drawing in sponsors takes time and dedication. But if you put in the required effort, deliver consistently, and create quality content that shines, then pretty soon, the sponsors might start coming to you.
Here’s hoping that happens sooner rather than later. Bye for now!