In a day and age where social media numbers hold a significant importance on how your brand is viewed, it is significantly difficult for smaller accounts to get noticed by makeup brands.
When I first started and did research on how to get PR packages, there was an equal amount of blog posts suggesting how to boost your following/engagement to 10K on Instagram as there was giving direct advice on how to approach brands.
Reading all those blogs I couldn’t help to feel disheartened...
This is because (1) I don’t have a following that’s even close to 10K (2) I don’t think that sending emails to brands would do any good
However, within a year of starting my business, I am lucky enough to say that I have received multiple PR packages.
Before I tell you how I got the PR packages, I would like to mention that I have never thought (with my current social following) I had the leverage to reach out to brands.
I think brands send out products to influencers because they believe those people will not only create great content, but also bring traffic to their site. The leverage from those influencers is their brand image, their social following, along with good content.
I think with a vast number of people trying to get PR packages and brand deals, brands have an insanely long list of people to choose from, so lacking one of those three leverage points will probably exclude you from getting PR packages.
Because of this, I felt pretty amazed when I was approached by brands.
Looking back, I never dreamt of being approached by brands. To me, even getting noticed by brands was enough. And I think that does play a big factor when it comes to brands sending you free products.
Here are my tips on getting PR packages (and getting noticed):
1. Tag all the makeup brands you use: When I post a beauty shot on my social media accounts, I often include all the brands I used. Not just mentioning the brands in the comments section, but also tagging them on the photo itself. On top of this, you can browse their social media page and see what hashtags they include in their bio. For example, Touch In Sol has the hashtag #solbabes for all their makeup brands and Realher Makeup has the hashtag #REALHERmakeup.
2. Focus on the act of giving: When you do get noticed by a brand, they sometimes like your post, follow you, and repost your content. When this happens, I do try to appreciate those brands more by incorporating more of their products into my shoots (even if it costs me money to do so).
3. Say thanks: When a makeup brand reposts my work, I post it on my story to appreciate them for sharing my work and bringing traffic to my page
Here are my tips to building a positive relationship with a brand:
1. If they do approach you… I would not only say thank you, but offer to give something back in return. Because I don’t have a large social following, I let the brands know I will schedule shoots that are focusing on their products. Not only that, I will share the photos to them via email. I do want to note that I normally play the role of both the photographer and the makeup artist for my shoots. Since I am often the photographer, the copyright of the photo does belong to me. However, if you are a makeup artist, I would ask the photographer in advance if that is something that they are okay with.
2. Say thanks: Once you receive your first PR package, I would send out a personal email to whomever sent you the package. This is often a social media marketing manager or assistant. The brands that have approached be so far are all brands that I used prior to them sending me PR packages, and I do indeed consider it an honor for brands that I have loved since the beginning to send me those packages--I tell them that!
3. Let them know if you would like any more products for future projects: If you followed the previous steps of giving back to the brands, I think that if they had a positive reaction to your past work, then the chances of getting more PR packages by reaching out to them is much more feasible than reaching out to them out of the blue.
I don’t have a big social following, and I think that itself would exclude me from the possibility of getting PR packages. The one reason why I believe I got those packages wasn’t solely because the brands liked my work--I continuously promoted their products regardless of what I got out of it. In other words, I focused on giving before I took anything from people.
On top of this, once I did get packages, I focused on giving more than others would have if they were in the same shoes.
I hope this helped!