I have been getting asked lately about how to approach companies for advertising or sponsoring contests. Almost all inquiries I can respond to easily with several of the following:
1) You have a super spammy blogspot domain. I doubt any company is going to take you seriously.
2) There is no about or bio page on the site that says anything about what your site is about.
3) You have less then 10 posts on your blog and it looks like the last one was over 7 months ago.
4) You are based outside of the United States. I know its not fair… but its just the way it is. (I have sponsored contests outside of the USA but I doubt most companies will)
5) Your blog is titled “Make Money With firstname lastname”.
6) It looks like nobody ever visits your site but you ? PageRank 0 and Alexa 9,000,000
7) You have no other advertisers advertising on your blog. Just a bunch of “Advertise Here” boxes
8 ) Your email is @hotmail/@gmail/@yahoo and not @yourblog.com or the site your trying to pitch.
9) The whois information about your site is anonymous (or in your case not yours)
10) Just in the email you wrote me I spotted 10 grammatical errors alone.
So I guess I will start with the advertisers one first. Here are my tips for getting advertisers for your blog/website.
Just start with anyone at any price.
Yes that’s right. Nobody wants to advertise on a blog that nobody is advertising on. When I first sell ads on websites most of the time its either trade outs or for very very low money (usually 1/10th of what it should be). You can always raise your rates later and let the market decide if its too high but nobody likes being the first advertiser.
Create a Zone page with demographics and statistics.
You can see my advertising page here. It makes it very easy for people to see what placements are available and where they are located on the page. Take a full screenshot if possible. The Pearl Crescent Page Saver extension works well to take a screenshot of the full page instead of just what you can see.
Also on that page I give out general statistics on traffic the website receives.
Tell the advertiser why they should advertise with you.
Again as you can see on my advertising page I show all the awards and mainstream press mentions the website gets. I also highlight the sites that point out how my site has driven them tons of sales and what a value it was to advertise. Testimonials can also be good.
Well those are the basic tips for how to get advertisers… but as far as getting contest sponsors I will add one more.
Let the company know exactly what they are getting
Don’t try to bs companies… especially if your in the “Making Money Online” space. After spending money with you or sponsoring a contest on your site if the traffic you told them you expected is not there then not only are they not going to spend any more money with you but you can bet they will let other companies know that your website is not a very good return on investment. Usually before I advertise I will ask other or previous advertisers there experience with a website. Its amazing what a small group the advertising space is.
One last tip for both contests and advertising – Hit up people that you already have a business relationship with first. Especially those affiliate companies you are making money for. There is so much bullcrap being written by people who have ZERO experience actually doing what they are talking about that usually companies are happy to put their brand on your site.