How to deal with potential sponsors (online)

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2 years ago

So, you have a healthy website or social media page, and someone has contacted you about the prospect of advertising. Awesome, but what do you do next? From my experience, here are some steps on how to deal with sponsors online...

Get to know more about your sponsor

This is crucial. Do not negotiate unless the person that wants to advertise is trustworthy and has a product or service that's getting reasonable or exceptional reviews. You want the advertiser to be trustworthy, because you need to be paid on time and correctly, and because dealing with dodgy business people can cause all kinds of problems. It's not a good idea to direct your followers to poor products and services, and to business people that avoid responding to customers.

Knowledge is power. Do your research.

Always know your rates

Know your rates before negotiating. That means you'll be more objective and confident in discussions. Don't allow your rates to be budged, especially if you know that deep down you're offering exceptional value. It's a good idea to have your advertising instruments listed and priced. Use spreadsheets to keep your lists organised and ready to send to potential sponsors. When you have a clear picture about what you want, security and assertiveness is projected. You're less likely to encounter resistance.

If under pressure, have a think before settling

If you sense there's something dodgy, or you're making far too many sacrifices, walk away from the negotiation, and return when you have a clearer mind. It's better that there is no deal, rather than a deal that stinks and which will leave you with regrets. It is always okay to give yourself time, and if you're dealing with someone reasonable, they will understand that. If a potential sponsor starts to lose patience and becomes aggressive, that's a red flag. Why are they in such a rush? Are they scared about you discovering something and rejecting the deal?

No deal is better than a bad deal.

Finalise with detail and provide clear payment instructions

When finalising a deal, invoice your sponsor. Make sure what they are paying for is clearly listed and priced. With more complex negotiations, the sponsor may even need to sign a contract. Have your payment terms set out and also the payment method. Make sure the payment method is secure so that you aren't taken advantage of. When you do provide services, it may be a good idea to collect evidence to show you indeed provided the services requested. It's sometimes better to be safe than sorry.

These are just a few tips on how to deal with potential sponsors on the internet. Obviously, deals can be more complex, so always do your due diligence. We live in a world that isn't always safe, and sometimes people lie to get what they want.

Also, the golden rule is, if something sounds too good to be true, it might just be the case.

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2 years ago