How to Create a Killer Media Kit

BFK-MediaKit

Let me guess–one of your biggest goals for your blog this year is to work with more brands, am I right? Or maybe you’ve already landed a few collaborations, but you want better, more quality ones, with companies you really love.

Me too! Isn’t that the goal with everyone? So, what’s stopping you? Many bloggers I talk to then throw out the “numbers” excuse– “I’m too small to appeal to brands” and “they only want to give me free stuff–I don’t get enough traffic to be able to charge!”

But guess what? They’re wrong!

Would you be shocked if I told you that your social following and blog statistics aren’t the #1 thing brands are concerned about? In fact, I’d say more than half of the brands that reach out to me for partnerships never even ask about my site numbers.

A little crazy, right?

If you focus on building quality content, and creating a personal brand that makes companies swoon, they’re far more likely to want to work with you, even if you have a smaller following!

So–how do you approach the whole, “gimme free stuff!” or “shell out the cash” conversation?

A media kit is the easiest way to do this! So–let’s talk media kits, shall we?

What is a media kit?

First off, what is a media kit anyway? In it’s simplest form, a media kit is a document that gives a brief overview of what your blog is all about.

In another way, think of it as your blog’s resume.

And you wouldn’t be able to stand out or land a job without a resume, or worse, a totally botched resume, would you? The same goes for your media kit!

How do you make a media kit?

There are several ways to make a media kit. I make mine in Adobe InDesign, but you can also make it in Adobe PhotoShop–or, shockingly, the easiest way I’ve found–Keynote! Keynote is basically the Mac version of Microsoft PowerPoint, but it’s much easier to use, and much prettier.

If you know you don’t have a knack for design, that’s totally okay, and in that case, I’d recommend finding a pretty template. For example, I have a couple of simple, but clean and professional (but still pretty!) media kit templates that will only set you back $15! These are editable in Adobe Photoshop.

(Psssttt…get access to the Library of Resources, there’s a Media Kit Checklist to help you do just this! Click below to get it!)

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What should your media kit include?

As a general rule, your media kit should include the name of your blog, logo, a short bio about your blog and/or yourself–and why people come to your site. What can they expect? Provide an overview of the topics you cover and include photos wherever possible! Your branding should be consistent with your site–it should look like an extension of your blog, with a cohesive look and feel.

It should also include your site and social stats. For this, refer to the number in your google analytics. You’ll want to include the number of unique visitors–which is the number of people that visit your site per month (google refers to these as “users”), visits–AKA how many times those people visited your site (google refers to these as “sessions”) and pageviews–how many views your site got total in the given time frame.

There is often a lot of confusion as to what the difference between “unique visits” and “visitors” is–so think of it this way. If I come over to your house three times in one month, I am only one “visitor” however, I have made three “visits.” Make sense?

In addition to your site statistics, you should also include metrics of your social followings–whatever platforms you use to promote your blog content. Make sure that if you list them here, that you actually do use them for your blog. If you have a personal twitter but only use it to promote your blog once a month, don’t list that here.

Another thing to keep in mind, if you’re a newer blogger (or even if you aren’t!), is that percentage of growth might be a great thing to list in your media kit. For example, maybe you have a few thousand Instagram followers, but you’re growing at a steady pace of x followers for month, for example. Estimate your growth percentage each month, and include that as a metric! I did this in the beginning by saying, “{x blog name} is a young blog, but she’s growing at impressive rate–an increase of X% each month!”

You’ll also want to list the types of partnerships you offer. For example, I have several ways brands can partner with me–for an original post, which includes my own photography, an editorial post, which does not include photography (more of a list, opinion, or advice type post), or social promotion only. I always make sure to include a sentence that says something like, “here are three examples of ways we can partner together, but I’d love to discuss further to create something truly unique!”

If you’ve partnered with brands before, you’ll definitely want to include a section that highlights which companies you’ve worked with–and even better, get a testimonial from a couple of them to include! This will reassure brands that you know what you’re doing, and that you’ll be an amazing partner!

I also have two versions of a media kit–one with pricing, and one without. Typically, I prefer to work with brands one on one to understand their situation, their goals, and what they are looking to get out of the partnership before I provide pricing. Reason being, every situation is unique, and partnership A with one brand might look the same on paper, but be a totally different undertaking than partnership A with another brand. This is why after outlining potential partnership options, I include a closing sentence such as, “Next steps: Email your ideas, campaign goals, and budget to (your email address here!), and we’ll talk details!”

This way, you make your terms clear, you give the company a chance to outline their expectations, and it allows you to provide a price that works for both you, and them.

If you aren’t ready to start charging yet, you can weave in language such as, ” [your blog name here] provides X in exchange for gifted product.” or something along those lines.

To charge or not to charge?

This is the question, and there isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer. When you start to charge is going to depend on you, what your comfortable with, and your unique situation. I didn’t start charging based on when I hit “X” number–I started charging when too many brands were asking for free things. You might find it easiest to follow the law of supply and demand. If you’re getting tons of brand emails filling your inbox, and you’re struggling to keep up with them, it’s probably time to start charging. If you rarely get emails from brands, that’s probably a sign that you should focus on building your following rather than snapping up “shiny pennies” from brands that aren’t that important to you.

You could always test the waters by charging for your “package” that requires the most work. For example, if a brand wants you to do a photo shoot with their shoes, promote them on your social accounts, and run a giveaway without giving you anything in return but a pair of shoes, well–that’s going to take up a lot of your time!

Another trade-off to think about, if you don’t think you’re ready to charge, is a trade. Are you trying to build-up your Instagram following? Maybe you’ll do the collaboration for free in exchange for a post on their Instagram. Don’t be afraid to get creative! Brands often expect negotiation, so don’t be afraid to lay out your terms.

Like my mother always says, the answer is always no unless you ask!

Extra Credit

I’ve had a lot of success when I respond to a brand by taking my media kit one step further, and making it into a mini presentation. In addition to my standard media kit, I might add three real ideas that weave in the brand. Think of these as though starters, or even mini pitches. I tier these as “high, medium, and low” cost options–basically, giving them an option that works no matter what their budget, and also gives them a taste of what kind of content they can expect from me.

Now, this might sound like it takes a lot of time, but if you build out a template, you’ll be able to customize them pretty quickly. When I take a little bit of extra time to do this, I am hardly ever turned down for a partnership. I make sure to use high quality photos to accompany each scenario as well. Here’s an example:

Company: Shoe brand

High option ($X): A 3 part series, which includes three styled outfit posts, a giveaway, and social amplification for each post. (I.E. I would share each post on my social platforms.) Theme: Summer in Chicago–I would highlight 3 of her favorite Chicago spots–picnicking in Millennium Park, Date night at her favorite rooftop, and shopping in Wicker Park–showcasing the versatility of her favorite pair of [shoe brand’s] shoes and how they’re perfect for any summer occasion.

Medium option ($X): 1 styled outfit post with social amplification, and an Instagram giveaway

Low option ($X): Instagram giveaway only

When to send your media kit

Okay, so now you have a good overview of media kits, but when do you send them? How do you use them?

I typically use them to respond to PR and brand emails, with a simple response like,

“Hi X! Great to hear from you, thank you so much for reaching out. I’m a big fan of X brand and I’d love to partner together–attached is my media kit to give you an idea of how we can team up, but I’d love to hear your ideas as well. After you review it, I’m happy to jump on a call to brainstorm ideas, or talk more details!”

See, how easy was that?

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Other questions about media kits?
What other questions do you still have about media kits? What has been your experience with them in the past?

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I'm Blair Staky—I help women turn their blogs into thriving businesses by sharing my secrets to growing a 6-figure blog. I'm so glad you're here!

Leave a Comment

  1. 6.1.16
    JDOverton 0410 said:

    I love this and I love your willingness to share and inspire! Here’s my question: I want to start blogging. I have a whole list of ideas but I haven’t even started yet. So, how do you reach out to companies if you have literally JUST started with zero followers? AND how do you know which companies to reach out to? Make sense? So many questions…can we just have coffee together so I can pick your brain? ha. Thank you!

    • 6.1.16
      Jess said:

      Hi JD! (Is that your name? I’m just guessing from your user name ;-P) These are all great questions and that is so exciting, congrats on starting your own blog! I would recommend not reaching out to companies until you have your blog pretty well established with a consistent (it doesn’t have to be huge) following. You definitely don’t want to pitch anything to brands unless you have something valuable to offer! When it does come time to reach out to companies, you should start small, and work your way up. Identify the companies you share an audience with, and that YOUR audience really will connect with. That way, it’s a win-win situation for everyone. I hope this helps! 🙂 Xoxox

      • 6.1.16
        JDOverton 0410 said:

        Thank you Jess! My name is Jamie. The D is my middle initial. That answers my question perfectly! I really appreciate it 🙂

        • 6.1.16
          Jess said:

          Oh good! And nice to meet you, Jamie! 🙂 Feel free to shoot any other questions you have our way! We love getting as much feedback from our readers as possible! Have an awesome rest of your short week! xo

          • 6.15.16
            Jess said:

            Hi! I just stumbled across this post and love all of your suggestions, Jess! On this same thread, how do you decide when you have “enough” followers? And followers being on Instagram, or signed up for blog updates? Im a patient person and want to be ready, but I also don’t want to hold myself back if I should be reaching out. Thank you so much!!

          • 8.30.16
            Jess said:

            Hi Jess!! I think you can ALWAYS reach out to brands no matter what your following is. What you ask for in exchange though, is what will differ. Honestly, there is no one size fits all answer. It really depends on how focused your niche is, how engaged your following is, and of course, what is worth it for you to complete a project! I know this is vague, but I would start by making organic connections with small brands and boutiques in your community, and arranging a trade! As you grow, you can then start asking for gifted product, and eventually, charging! I would take it one step at a time. My rule is always supply and demand. If you have too many brand requests to keep up with based on the current the way you’re doing things, start asking for more! For example, if you have a lot of brands emailing you asking for a post in exchange for gifted product, and you can’t keep up with posting all of them, start charging. That’s how I did it when I started, and how I still do it– and it works for me 🙂

  2. 6.4.16

    This is so helpful, thanks for sharing your insight!

    • 6.6.16
      Jess said:

      I’m so glad you found it helpful, Rachel!

  3. 6.8.16
    Sher said:

    hey jess! love your extra credit suggestion. i’ve mostly been keeping my collaboration ideas in the body of my email and attaching my media kit. do you mean that you add another page to your media kit with the options? in terms of photos, if you haven’t actually worked together yet, are you using a standard image to illustrate the high/medium/low budget options?

    Sher
    http://www.shershegoes.com

    • 6.14.16
      Jess said:

      Hi Sher! Sorry, I’m just now seeing your comment! Yes, I add another page for this. (I know it’s technically the same info as in a body of an email, it’s just far more impressive this way!) For photos, just pick some of your favorites! They’re really there just to make it look pretty. Maybe for an “original outfit post” option include a full body shot of you, or for a “link roundup inclusion” you could include a photo of you on your computer, or an iPad, or just a shot of your desk. It doesn’t have to be super literal 😉

  4. 6.10.16

    Wow Jess this is so helpful I have been blogging for almost 2 yrs and stll not making much money…lots of good info here to help with that!! Just curious if you do blog design and media kits for others? I have so many great ideas, but find the techy stuff of blogging(hello..I am 51..lol..not raised with this stuff!) and working almost full time ..very challenging to fulfill my goals for my blog l Thanks for sharing all this!

    Valerie(mapleleopard37@gmail.com http://www.mapleleoaprd.com)

    • 6.14.16
      Jess said:

      Hi Valerie!

      Apologies for the delay, I’m just seeing this comment! Thanks so much for stopping by! We aren’t offering design services at this time, but we are planning to offer some workshops that will walk you through how to do it yourself step by step! I know it’s definitely daunting, but I promise, when someone is walking you through it, you’ll pick it up easily! If this interests you, make sure you’re signed up for our email list–we’ll send through announcements for new webinars, etc, that way! I hope this helps!

  5. 7.7.16

    Thank you SO much for this, Jess! I’ve been looking for a thorough explanation and example and you delivered! Definitely appreciate the time you took to put this together!

  6. 7.7.16

    I’ve seen mentions of media kits everywhere lately but no one explained it as well or as simply as you did! Thanks so much!

    xo, Skylar
    http://www.styledbyskylar.com

  7. 7.7.16
    Cassie said:

    Thank you so much for this awesome informative post. My question is, if I focus on my Instagram (which is growing steadily) and only occasionally blog, can I still do a media kit and focus it on the IG side? Also, if I am not really after monetary compensation and happy to collaborate for product what would be the best way to say this? Thank you!!

    • 8.18.16
      Jess said:

      Hi Cassie! Yes, you definitely can still put together a media kit for your Instagram! I think that’s a great idea. If you aren’t looking for monetary compensation, you can simply use language like, “in exchange for in-kind donation of product” or “gifting” or “promotion in exchange for gifted product.” I hope this helps!

      • 8.23.16
        Cassie said:

        Hi Jess, it really does help, thank you so much!!

  8. 7.8.16

    I can’t stress enough how amazing these tips are! I’ve been looking into making my media kit and hadn’t been able to find a clear example yet, you definitely delivered with this post, so much useful information. Thanks so much for sharing!

    XoBlessings, Mallory
    http://herlovelybeauty.com

    • 8.18.16
      Jess said:

      Thank you Mallory!! I’m so glad you found them to be helpful!

  9. 7.8.16

    I’m so glad i found this, can’t wait to use these tips!

    Claudia // Lipstick Theory // Lifestyle Blog

  10. 7.9.16

    I originally wasn’t going to read this because I just did my media kit, but I thought hey, there may be a nugget or two of information I can use to update it.

    Boy, was I wrong. There was a whole lot of information that I definitely needed. I’m so glad I didn’t overlook this blogpost.

    xoxo,

    La Deutsche Diva
    http://www.ladeutschediva.com
    ♥ German ♥ English ♥

    • 8.18.16
      Jess said:

      Hearing this totally made my day! I’m so glad you found it helpful!

  11. 7.12.16
    Emma said:

    This was so helpful thank you thank you! xo

    • 8.18.16
      Jess said:

      You are so welcome, Emma!

  12. 7.17.16
    Kate said:

    Super helpful tips! I seriously love posts like this!
    -Kate // http://www.classyandkate.com

  13. 7.17.16

    Really helpful post! Bookmarking this as a reference for the future 🙂 thanks for sharing Jess!

  14. 7.25.16
    Kristan Buck said:

    This is fantastic. Definitely coming back to this once I start putting my media kit together.

    • 8.18.16
      Jess said:

      Let me know how it goes, Kristan! 🙂

  15. 9.6.16
    Cayleigh Hopkins said:

    This post was incredibly helpful! Thank you for sharing Jess. Excited to get started on the media kit for my blog, The Petal Report!

  16. 9.15.16

    Love this post — always good to get some advice to build your own mini business. I have just started to embark on sponsored posts and brand partnerships and I’m excited to build my own media kit! http://mystilettolife.com/2016/09/13/nyfw-and-life-survival-guide/

  17. 9.15.16

    I did the first draft of my media kit last night, I want to go back and refine it with these tips in mind. Thank you for this post!

  18. 10.21.16
    Virginia Evans said:

    Such a great, helpful post. Thank you!

  19. 11.2.16
    Mallory said:

    Such a good post! Thanks for sharing!

    <3
    DrWinesBlog

  20. 1.8.17
    Sofia said:

    I have read few posts about media kits and am so glad to find something new from your post that I haven’t read else where: include your growth! Very nice idea.

  21. 1.18.17
    Isabel said:

    Wow, this was a lot of great information! You are also the first person I’ve come across to actually give an example on how to respond professionally! And given tips on other things to include that others haven’t!

    Whenever a brand contacts me I’m so insecure on how to tell them nicely “Thanks for your interest, it will cost X”, that I end up doing it for free… As I still love the opportunity. But lately I’m getting more and more requests. Testing out products, writing posts, shooting and editing pictures, it all takes a lot of time, and for what? Some free stuff that I didn’t necessarily need, but I thought my audience would love? It’s still a lot of work that I’m putting out for free :/

    Well, I have some work to do! 🙂