how to tell if an influencer collaboration is right for you

How to Tell if a Collaboration Opportunity is Right for You

Let’s say you’re a vegan foodie scrolling through Perlu Collabs and you find it – a really cool, ridiculously awesome collaboration opportunity to make a documentary about vegan living. Or maybe you’re a true crime blogger and found a collaboration request to start a true crime podcast. You’re pumped and want to hit “Apply” right now. We don’t blame you! After all, collabs are a win-win strategy.

Before you hit “Apply,” though, here are 5 questions to ask yourself (and your co-influencer!) to ensure that the Collab is truly right for you.

Do you like the person in person?

The influencer life isn’t all about making moolah or reaching 1 million followers or landing that brand sponsorship (though all of that is pretty sweet). It’s also about connecting with the influencer community and building lasting friendships.

Because the influencer community is full of out-of-this-world people, it’s easy to jump right into a collab before you get to know the person you’re working with. But just because an influencer is ridiculously awesome doesn’t mean they’re a good match for you.

So before you accept a Collab, brush up on your stalker skills. Check out the influencer’s social media and blog. Look at the other influencers and brands they’ve collaborated with. Is this someone you could not only work with, but be friends with, too?

two influencers sitting on a swing

Don’t be afraid to reach out and conduct an interview! You may love who they are behind the screen, but collabs don’t happen behind screens. They happen in real life and require real interaction. So you have to figure out if you like the influencer in person (or videochat).

You can put the pantsuit away, though; there’s no reason the interview should be formal or stuffy. Instead, keep it casual, and be prepared with questions that will help you get to know the influencer not only on a professional level, but as a real person.

Do your goals align?

While you’re chatting it up and getting to know your co-influencer, take some time to discuss your goals. Do you want to increase engagement with a fun crossover video? Do you want to grow your audience by collaborating on a cool piece of downloadable content? Roll in the dough with a paid course? Or maybe raise awareness about a cause, like body positivity activists Megan Jayne Crabbe and Dani Adriana?

Or you could even collaborate on an challenge like Caroline Joy from Un-Fancy and Lee Vosburgh from Style Bee who long-distance co-host the 10×10 Style Challenge that encourages participants to wear the same 10 items 10 different ways for 10 days every season.

All of these goals are fantastic! But to really succeed, you and your collaborator have to have similar goals. If you’re trying to increase engagement but your co-collaborator is trying to get some income, you might have a difficult time creating a collaboration that works for both of you.

goals planner and a cup of coffee

If you realize your goals don’t quite align, there’s no reason to nix the collab entirely! You’ve got a couple of options:

  1. Why not agree to create multiple Collabs? Some could be focused on engagement, and some could focus on driving income. Your main goals may be different, but that doesn’t mean you can’t benefit from the Collab. Find something that helps you both reach your goals.
  2. Wait it out! Just because you have to say no to a collaboration now doesn’t mean it won’t be a good fit in the future. If you like each other, who’s to say you can’t collab in the months to come?  Keep those connections and grow your network – a solid influencer network is a goldmine for collaboration opportunities.

Not sure how to find someone in your niche? Start right here on Perlu! Join (or create!) some Perlu Packs and start applying to Collabs.

Already have an idea for a collaboration? Create your own! Influencers in each Pack are eager to get started on the right Collabs with the right influencer. Who knows? That influencer might be you!

Do your values align?

If you like the person and your goals align, it’s time to chat values. What do you care about? What are you “in it” for? Are you in it to educate? Spread awareness? Encourage a certain lifestyle? Empower a certain group of people? Influence the fashion world? Spread new ideas?

Your values are that underlying layer. If you’re a travel blogger, “traveling” is not your value – it’s what you do. Your value is why you do it.

Pro tip: don’t confuse values with industry.

As you search, you may come across an influencer who you love but who is in a completely different industry than you – don’t nix them just yet! One of the best ways to create unique and innovative content is to cross-pollinate! In fact, mixing it up a little may suit your goals and values more than sticking with your own niche.

For example, you might expect two fashion influencers to get along perfectly; but one could be interested in sustainable, minimalist fashion and the other could be interested in luxury or designer fashion. They may be in a similar industry, but that doesn’t necessarily mean their values are the same – there may actually be a pretty heavy conflict of interest.

On the other hand, a sustainable fashion influencer and a clean energy or climate change advocate may be a perfect mix! They’re both concerned with green living and sustainability, so combining their expertise makes perfect sense – their audiences aren’t exactly the same, but they have similar interests, opening up doors for 10X the reach!

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Can you contribute your part?

Some collaboration opportunities are quick and easy! Others, though may require days of your time, serious expertise or a financial investment. Whatever the case, are you ready?

If there’s any doubt you’re not quite prepared to take on the project, don’t be afraid to put it on hold! You may need more time and money, or you may just lack the expertise and experience at this point in your influencer journey.

busy influencer working at her computer

It’s always better to be honest – postponing the project can be a bummer, but it’s far better than trying and failing. Then, when you do have the time and resources, you can return to the collab and blow it out of the park!

In the meantime, if you found an influencer you really want to work with, why not brainstorm a different collaboration idea? Whether you’re collaborating on a short post or just meeting up to exchange tips and guidance, there are plenty of collaboration ideas that require a smaller commitment.

The more you collab, the more successful you’ll be as an influencer! So don’t let a lack of time or money stop you from reaching out to that awesome influencer you found on Perlu.

Will it Benefit You in the Long Run?

Even when you’re collaborating, you have to be a little selfish. A collaboration idea could be fun, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s beneficial to you or your brand.

So ask yourself: what’s in it for you? Exposure? Followers? Traffic? Dolla’ dolla’ bills? Awareness for your favorite cause or charity?

On the other hand, having fun could be the benefit! Being an influencer doesn’t have to be all work and no play, after all.

Your best bet? Always make sure having fun is one of your goals! Rhett and Link from Good Mythical Morning are masters at just having fun while simultaneously raising awareness for different charities and projects.

When you’re so amped about collaborating, it’s tempting to jump right in, especially when there are so many killer creators out there. But taking the time to figure out if the Collab is right for you will save you precious time and energy and ensure you get the highest return on investment (and have the most fun) possible.

Luckily, Perlu has so many collaboration opportunities that you’re sure to find the perfect fit again and again and again. And just imagine how all of this collaboration will positively propel your career. Join some Packs today to start building your influencer network and discovering Collabs (or creating your own)!

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