How micro influencers get paid partnerships, from templates for reaching out to top brands to collaborate with

Lillian Zhang, micro TikTok influencer, college and job tips.
Micro influencer Lillian Zhang landed her first paid deal through a TikTok DM.Lillian Zhang.
  • Micro influencers are landing lucrative paid partnerships with brands by pitching themselves.

  • Some slide into a brand's DMs while others create and send a media kit.

  • Several micro influencers on Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube shared the templates they use.

The creator economy has grown so much that there are now different tiers — nano influencers, micro influencers, macro influencers, and more. The micro influencer tier in particular is rapidly expanding its earning potential as people with a few thousand followers are being offered lucrative collaborations with brands like Adidas, Banana Republic, and Toyota.

Micro influencers are generally defined in the industry as those who have up to 100,000 followers on a social-media platform like TikTok, Instagram, or YouTube. Many brands have gravitated toward these kinds of influencers because they often have high engagement rates and lower costs than partnering with celebrities.

Insider recently spoke with 21 micro influencers, who broke down the top brands they work with.

Read more about 7 top brands to pitch as a micro influencer, from Dunkin' to Mejuri

Lillian Zhang, a micro influencer whose content focuses on college and early-career job advice, landed her first paid deal when she had only 10,000 followers. Before reaching out to brands, she thoroughly researches them to figure out how her content fits in with their values and assess how much she can earn.

"If you don't have a strong grasp on these concepts beforehand, it is very easy to get lowballed," she previously told Insider.

She uses TikTok, where she's amassed around 22,000 followers, to send a message to brands she wants to work with.

Take a look at the exact DM she used to get her first paid brand deal and her advice for pitching.

While DMing on a social-media platform is the preferred method of outreach for some influencers, others have created their own media kits, which are documents that often includes information like engagement data, previous collaborations and press, and a biography. It's such a popular tool among influencers that earlier this month, Instagram announced that it will let some users build media kits within the social-media platform.

22-year-old Jour'dan Haynes used a simple, one-page media kit to land her first paid collaboration last year when she had 2,000 followers on Instagram. Since then, she's expanded her kit to three pages and has collaborated with brands like Burger King and Garnier.

Browse her exact 3-page media kit that she attaches when emailing brands.

Other creators have their own email templates, which they customize based on the brand and what they want the partnership to look like. Julie Tecson, who's built a following of 7,000 Instagram followers, curated three different email templates — one for a personal project, one for an event, and one for a design project. According to her, it's pretty easy to explain why companies prefer working with micro influencers like her over those with millions of followers.

"If a brand can have a small creator make them an amazing TikTok video in exchange for just one product, that's way cheaper than hiring out a whole studio to make them video content," she previously told Insider.

Here are the different templates she uses for herself and other clients.

Insider spoke with 15 micro influencers who have all pitched brands and landed paid collaborations using unique templates and documents.

Micro influencer media kit examples: 

Email templates creators use to pitch brands:

How influencers DM brands on social media:

Other types of documents creators use for brand deals:

This post has been updated with new information and examples.

Read the original article on Business Insider