Influencer marketing helps your brand sell product, build brand awareness, connect with your target audience, and achieve content marketing objectives. But you won’t get very far with it if you don’t know how to successfully execute influencer outreach.

Just direct message an influencer and away you go, right? If only influencer outreach was that easy. How you craft your outreach message to an influencer is very important. It can’t be too long, or too short. You don’t want your DM’s getting lost in their inbox or even worse, giving a bad first impression.

Read on to learn about how we approach influencer outreach and what our outreach campaign (with templates included) looks like. You’ll be able to replicate it easily for your own brand and help your influencer marketing strategy reach its full potential.

Influencer Outreach Strategy Overview

Before you start any influencer outreach, there’s no point reaching out to influencers that aren’t the right fit for your brand. It’s going to end up wasting your time and set your influencer marketing campaign up for potential failure.

How do you find influencers?

An influencer can be a blogger, podcaster, social media personality, celebrity, industry expert, or thought leader. Finding relevant influencers for your brand requires a bit of patience, but it’s worth it. If you’ve got a list of influencers ready to go, scroll on past this section.

If you don’t, bookmark this post and switch over to our article on how to find the right social media influencers for your brand. It will show you how to identify the best influencers and how to analyze them so you know if they are worth reaching out to. For example, do you go micro-influencer or macro-influencer? Or do you analyze the influencer based on metrics?

How much does influencer outreach cost?

It depends what you are using to do your outreach.

  • Some brands go down the manual and time-consuming path of using hashtags to find potential influencers.
  • Others use influencer marketing platforms that have a searchable database to help you find the perfect match for your campaign. But these third-party tools can cost upwards of $5k a month!
  • An alternative to influencer marketing tools is using a social listening platform like Buzzsumo. You can use their free plan which gives you a social media dashboard dedicated to finding influencers — but you're limited to only 10 searches a month.

All of the above either costs you money, is limited, or it's time-consuming. Instead of burning your money on tools, you can use Facebook’s Brand Collab Manager (BCM) to help you identify influencers.

An awesome feature of the platform is you are able to reach out to the influencers directly from BCM via Facebook messaging and directly to their email (we recommend doing both)!

Check out this Twitter thread that has a bunch of helpful video tutorials that guide you through using BCM for your influencer outreach.

What is the best way to reach out to an influencer?

How would you start a relationship that you desire to have long-term? Would you initiate by asking if they could do something for you? Sadly this is how brands often initiate influencer outreach. Brands will offer to send out their products at no cost, but then immediately ask for a post or shout-out on social media.

Plain and simple, don’t do this. Without them ever hearing about you or your product, your outreach is their first impression of you. This bring up the core philosophy of building influencer relationships and product seeding: Build the relationship on giving, not asking.

Read more: Product Seeding (Influencer Gifting): What is it & how does it work?

How do you craft an influencer outreach email?

The most successful influencer outreach requires three things:

  • A quick introduction — be complimentary, but get to the point.
  • In one sentence, explaining why you are reaching out to them.
  • No strings attached messaging — reassure them you aren’t asking them for anything in return. You’re simply giving it to them because they are a great fit for your brand.

And use the templates we provide at the end of this article to send your first seeding message to an influencer.

5 Steps For Effective Influencer Marketing Outreach

Follow these steps for your next outreach campaign. We’ll share the templates and outreach flow in the next section.

1. Find as many of the influencers emails as possible. As we mentioned above, you can do this using Facebook’s Brand Collab Manager which is a free tool that helps you reach out via Facebook Messenger and directly to their email.

2. Start outreach on email first. Send the initial message template and 5 follow-ups (or until you get a response with address).

3. No email? Start messaging on Instagram DM at the same time as #2 (initial message + 5 follow-ups or until they respond with address).

4. Influencers who don’t respond on email after 5 follow-ups, start messaging on Instagram DM (initial message + 5 follow-ups or until they respond with address).

5. Make sure any influencers who didn’t respond got 5 follow-ups on email (if available) and 5 follow-ups on Instagram.

Favorite tool highlight: We use MightyScout to help start collating the influencer content posted on all the social media platforms in real-time. Once we send the product out, we input every influencer’s social handle, that we had product seeded, into MightyScout.

Key Points:

  • Make sure all 5 follow-ups get sent on both Email and IG (if email is available). Keep an eye on the IG DM limits.
  • Check Address Sheet for Tracking Numbers and Delivery Dates of when to send the How are you liking your product message.
  • Once a product has been delivered, check Mighty Scout daily to see who needs to be messaged for Content Rights. Content Rights should be done daily once posts begin and start the day of the first post.

Side note: To make your product seeding process (sending out free product) even easier, we developed a Shopify app that streamlines getting the products to your influencers. Our all-in-one app seeds products to all of your influencers and treats them as a customer within your store and eliminates backend frustration. You can modify it directly in the app, and you can track and monitor it in real time. Check it out here.

Influencer Outreach Flow: Use These Email Templates & Outreach Messages

Feel free to copy and paste these outreach templates for your own influencer outreach.

Initial Outreach Message Template

STANDARD EMAIL:

Subject Line: {Brand Name} - Partnership! / Subject Line: [Brand Name] - TikTok Partnership

Subject Line: Where do we ship it? (To Test on some brands, ask your Influencer Specialist)

“Hi ______!

My name is ______ - Influencer Marketing Coordinator over here at {BRAND NAME}, {BRAND ONE-LINER, BACKGROUND}. We thought you’d be a perfect fit for their product and absolutely love who you are. We’d love to gift you our {PRODUCT NAME}, no strings attached! Let me know your address [and SIZE if applicable here] and we’ll get some product over to you ASAP! Thanks!

Once again, this is a free gift with your name on it. We aren’t asking you to do anything in return.

Here is the link to the product: [INSERT LINK}.”

PS. if Instagram is easier, you can DM me on IG! @ [BRAND HANDLE}

How Do You DM An Influencer For Collaboration?

STANDARD DM FOR INSTAGRAM INFLUENCER OR TIKTOK:

“Hi ______!

We’re {BRAND NAME}, {BRAND ONE-LINER, BACKGROUND} We thought you’d be a perfect fit for our product and absolutely love who you are. We’d love to gift you our {PRODUCT NAME}, no strings attached! Let me know your address [and SIZE if applicable here] and we’ll get some product over to you ASAP! Thanks!”

MESSAGING TIKTOK INFLUENCERS ON OTHER PLATFORMS:

“Hi ______!


We’re {BRAND NAME}! {Insert ONE LINER about the product/brand here} Can I just say, your TikTok content is AMAZING! But we had a hard time getting a hold of you there, so we thought we’d reach out here. Anyway, we’d love to gift you {PRODUCT NAME}, no strings attached! Let me know your address {and SIZE if applicable here} and we’ll get some product over to you ASAP! Thanks!

P.S We can always chat by email if that’s easier.”

Influencer Outreach Follow-Up Templates

If no email or Instagram DM response within 24 hours, follow-up every 24 hours on both email and DM. Do this for a total of 5 follow-ups:

  • First follow-up: “Hey [first_name]! I have a box with your name on it! All I need is your address (and size / and choice of product - if applicable)”
  • Second follow-up: “Hey [first_name]! C’mon! Everybody loves free gifts! And we’re serious, we’re not asking for anything in return from you. Just hit me back with your address and we’ll take care of the rest!”
  • After no response after 2nd follow-up: Go like their 5 most recent posts and comment on their most recent post with “I’m here to support all your posts and hoping you open our DM and email. You won a million dollars! Okay...it’s not that good but we think our products are pretty special. Pretty please?”
  • Third follow-up: “Hey [first_name]!Just wanted to follow-up here to see if you’re interested? We would be honored for you to just have our product, no strings attached. Can’t wait to hear from you!”
  • Fourth follow-up: “Hey there! Thought I’d check in again on the offer of a free gift of our product. Let me know if you’re interested! I just need your address and we’ll take care of the rest.”
  • Fifth follow-up: “Hey [first_name]! You sure you don’t want this free gift? Let me know.”

How Are You Liking The Product? Email/DM Templates

3 DAYS AFTER DELIVERY DATE:

“Hey [first_name]! Our team just informed me that you've received your package a few days ago!  How are you liking it? We really appreciate you being open to receiving it! If you end up wanting to share about us, we’d love to send you some examples of content we love to repost! We only say that because we often get that feedback/question from others. Again, there’s no expectation for you to do so. Nonetheless, hope you’re enjoying our brand! Can’t wait to hear from you!”

Content Rights Outreach & Follow-Up

CONTENT RIGHTS EMAIL/DM TEMPLATE:

“Hi___!

We wanted to reach out because we saw your content and loved what you put together. We were wanting to see if you would give us permission to reshare this content within our Facebook ads for 30 days. We appreciate your time and we hope to continue working with you going forward!”


CONTENT RIGHTS - TIKTOK CONTENT/SPARK ADS:

“Hi___!

We wanted to reach out because we saw your content and loved what you put together. We were wanting to see if you would give us permission to reshare this content within our Facebook ads for 30 days as well as via Spark Ads on TikTok. We appreciate your time and we hope to continue working with you going forward!”

CONTENT RIGHTS FOLLOW-UP:

“Hi _____!

I wanted to follow up with you on the request to use your content! Let me know your thoughts on this!”

CONTENT RIGHTS GRANTED SCREENSHOT:

Once rights are granted, screenshot their agreement to it on DM and organize it by Influencer Name.


NPS Survey Send-Out

Send link of NPS Survey:

“Hi [first name],

Thank you so much for representing our brand! Feedback is really valuable to us so if you would be so kind as to take 3-5 minutes out of your day to fill out this survey, that would be greatly appreciated!

Additional Follow-Up Message:

“Just wanted to follow up on seeing if you had the chance to fill out our survey! Thank you. We really appreciate it!”

Conclusion

Every influencer outreach email or direct message you send should have a quick introduction that gets to the point, one sentence that explains why you are reaching out to them, and a sentence explaining there are no strings attached.

With our templates readily available and shared with you today, you have no excuse for poor outreach emails.

So what are you waiting for? Grab your list of influencers and our initial outreach message template and begin. And don’t forget the follow-up sequence!