How To Approach Brands For A Gaming Sponsorship
Hi this is Zac, Co-Founder of the gaming drink brand, Rogue Energy. As someone who receives and reviews thousands of gaming sponsorship requests per week, I have unique insight into the matter of communicating with brands and securing sponsorships. In this article, I will share all the tips and tricks to secure your ideal gaming sponsorships so you can maximize your earning potential and have the greatest success rate.
I will preface with the fact that the information shared in this article is meant for established streamers and organizations with established audiences who are not working with an agency (agencies will do most of the inbound and outbound for you).
6 TIPS TO FOLLOW WHEN APPROACHING BRANDS
- Be Polite & Professional
- Come Prepared - More Information Is Better
- Present Ideas - Why They Should Partner With You
- Share Past Successes
- Know Your Worth
BE POLITE & PROFESSIONAL
First and foremost, when reaching out to a brand, approach the conversation in a polite and professional manner. Treat the initial and subsequent correspondence with the company like a job interview since you are trying to impress the brand you are reaching out to.
When emailing, use a professional email that you will check regularly for a reply. Make sure to sign off your email with a signature that includes your full name and contact information to make replying even easier. If you don’t hear back in a timely fashion, politely reach out again or ask if there is a better contact to email regarding gaming sponsorships. Make sure your outreach is polished so you don’t shoot yourself in the foot before the brand even reviews your information.
COME PREPARED - MORE INFORMATION IS BETTER
You would be shocked how many emails (and even phone calls) I receive from people who simply ask “Sponsorship?” and include no additional information. Spoiler alert; those emails get deleted right away.
When you first email a brand to inquire about a gaming sponsorship, treat it as an opportunity to introduce the decision maker to YOUR brand. The more they know about you, the easier it is for them to make an informed decision. Information that should be included in an outreach email would be:
- Share a brief introduction of your name, who you are, what you do, and why you are reaching out. Typically 2 quick sentences (the TL;DR if you will).
- Include links to all applicable socials and channels. Share only those you are active on and would use for promotion during the sponsorship.
- Website if applicable
- Share the last 30 days social/channel statistics. Ideally screenshots of each platform for ease of reading.
- Share any other applicable information regarding your reach/influence. An example might be if you are an eSports organization and you just entered a new title or you are a content creator and just won an award. Anything that indicates a milestone or upcoming point of interest.
- Express a desire to discuss a possible partnership. Ask for next steps on how to continue the conversation.
- Wrap up the email with several methods of contacting you and a final thank you.
PRESENT IDEAS - WHY THEY SHOULD PARTNER WITH YOU
After your initial outreach, there will hopefully be a positive reply from the brand where they will show interest in learning more about the opportunity. Most of these conversations will happen via email but it’s not uncommon to discuss if over Zoom or Google Meet.
This is where you and the brand can go back and forth regarding the finer details of what a possible sponsorship would look like. Here is where you want to continue to wow the brand. One thing that really sets you apart from other creators and teams reaching out is if you show initiative and share several pre-planned examples of how you would activate the brand and sponsorship. This could be anything. Perhaps you have several ideas for initial YouTube videos to introduce your audience to the new partnership. Maybe you have an idea for a unique event centered around the brand. Perhaps you will do a creative and unique shoutout/integration during gameplay on stream. Regardless, coming to the brand with ideas versus asking what they want you to do can show incredible initiative and greatly impress the company.
During this phase of the negotiations, brands will begin to give their input as to what they expect out of a partnership. Feel free to go back and forth on the details and make sure both you and the brand are on the same page regarding expectations.
SHARE PAST SUCCESSES
To push the conversation over the finish line and secure the gaming sponsorship you are looking for, put the brand at ease any way you possibly can. The best way of doing this is by sharing successful Case Studies of brands you might have worked with in the past. By sharing examples of past successes, the steps you took to activate the brand, and the details regarding how your audience responded, you can showcase your ability to move the needle for the brand you are negotiating with.
Not everyone will have past campaign examples to lean on, and that’s ok. This is really more of an “icing on the cake” trick that can seal the deal in your favor.
KNOW YOUR WORTH
Inevitably, if conversations go well between you and the brand, an offer will be made. Before the brand presents the details of how they are willing to compensate you, you should establish a general idea of what you expect to see.
When an offer is presented, it is important to “Know Your Worth”. You are responsible for having a firm grasp of your audience size, your social metrics, your channel statistics, and any other extra benefits you bring to the sponsorship. This should empower you to know roughly what you deserve for compensation. I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to be realistic with your expectations. Brands enter sponsorships to make money through leveraging your influence and audience. You make money by matching the size of your audience and the depth of your influence to promote products. An agreement will never be met if you over-inflate the value you bring to the table. Accuracy is key.
Inversely, if you feel their offer is too low, come back to them with precise, empirical reasoning as to why the offer needs to be adjusted. Be comfortable negotiating back and forth to receive what you deserve WHILE ALSO being realistic in your ask. Ideally, both parties are comfortable with the agreement when finalized.
Finally, after the agreement is signed and you have secured your gaming sponsorship, GET AFTER IT! Do everything you can to make the sponsorship a success. Brands talk to one another and information gets shared. Stack several successes together and, not only will the brand you sign with continue to extend your contract, but the door opens for even more gaming sponsorships after that!