- 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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:
- Jour'dan Haynes, a lifestyle micro influencer with around 5,900 Instagram followers. She has a 3-page media kit she uses to pitch to brands.
- Kayla Compton, a part-time micro influencer with 6,900 subscribers on YouTube. Her 8-page media kit includes her past brand deals.
- Jen Lauren, a YouTuber with almost 7,000 subscribers and 5,000 followers on Instagram. She shared her 3-page media kit.
- Laur DeMartino, a micro influencer with almost 7,000 followers on Instagram and 4,500 subscribers on YouTube. She created a 9-page media kit to showcase her value to brands.
- Tess Barclay, a micro influencer with 30,000 subscribers on YouTube and 5,600 followers on Instagram. She sends a 1-page media kit to land deals.
- Justine Jakobs, an adult micro influencer with around 36,000 OnlyFans subscribers. Here's the 4-page media kit she uses to pitch brands.
- And 5 influencers shared the case studies of past brand deals they include in their media kits.
Email templates creators use to pitch brands:
- Jack Betts, a micro influencer with around 5,200 Instagram followers. He shared the email template that he also includes a resume in.
- Julie Tecson, a micro influencer with 7,000 followers on Instagram. She has different email templates for different purposes.
- Gigi Kovach, a micro influencer with 13,500 Instagram followers. She uses this email template to pitch brands.
- Emma Cortes, a micro influencer with around 50,000 Instagram followers. Here is the email template she used to start landing paid collabs.
How influencers DM brands on social media:
- Jayln Baiden, a micro influencer with around 5,700 followers on Instagram. Here is a DM template she recommends using to catch a brand's attention.
- Lillian Zhang, a micro influencer who has around 22,500 followers on TikTok. Here's the DM she used to land her first paid brand collaboration.
- Ashley Jones, a micro influencer with around 50,000 followers on Instagram. She shares advice on the best way to DM a brand on Instagram.
Other types of documents creators use for brand deals:
- Florence Williams, a micro influencer with 13,500 followers on Instagram. She shares the 14-page "proposal" document she uses to pitch.
- Kristen Bousquet, a micro influencer with 24,500 followers on Instagram. She sends the brand an 8-page wrap-up report so they'll work with her again.
This post has been updated with new information and examples.