Talking to Sponsors at Alt

By Sara Urquhart. Photography by Christian Dior for Vogue 1969.

Alt works hard to make sure we’re bringing the best, blogger-friendly brands to our conference. We’ve invited brands that are creative, active in the blogging space, and ready to engage with bloggers. If your main goals for Alt include connecting with sponsors, I have several suggestions for how to build that relationship effectively.

First, know what your one or two main goals are. Then, do your research ahead of time so you’ll know which sponsors can help you reach those goals. Of course, you’ll also need to make a plan that includes what you can offer them, too. And prepare to be flexible once you’ve actually engaged in a conversation with the brand.

Be prepared to approach brands and talk business at Alt. This might mean being bold and reaching just past your comfort zone, but remember this is why brands have come to Alt. They’re here to meet you, and they won’t be put off if you want to talk business. That said, it’s unlikely you’ll hammer out a deal right there on the spot, so be aware of social cues like others waiting to talk to the same brand rep or an invitation to follow up with details via email.

It’s wise of you to think long-term and build a relationship with a brand that could last over several campaigns. You’ll accomplish this by being respectful in your conversation, careful of time, and watching for social cues. Be prepared to share ideas, of course, but listen, listen, listen, too.

And remember, the real value in making that contact will be when you follow-up with that brand after Alt.

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Eden Hensley

Marketing creative, community engagement specialist, technophile, photographer, food and wine enthusiast, and the founder and editor-in-chief of The Road to The Good Life, a lifestyle blog about appreciating and enhancing your life by being grateful for the "haves" instead of lingering on the "wants." There you will find personal stories about my life and family weaved in with real-life, achievable entertaining tips, recipes for hearty home cooked meals, and DIY projects for capturing and sharing memories. I believe the best place to swap stories is over a shared meal, preferably a Thai-meal served family style, and teach an online introduction class to Thai Flavors and host the Family Dinners at The Station supper club in San Francisco.