4 things you must check before starting a paid collaboration

By Paiame Shalalvand

It’s more common nowadays to pay an influencer for its influence and reach. The time when brands could gift bigger profiles is gone. Mid and macro (even micro) influencers want to be paid for the influence, reach and content creation. This makes total sense but it puts more preparation on the brand to make sure they’re analyzing and choosing the right profile. There are many things brands can analyze. But here are a few extra important things you must check before paying an influencer.

Past collaborations with brands

By checking what other brands she has been seen with could indicate first of all what she likes and secondly what her followers appreciate. To get deeper it’s recommended to look at how many times she mentioned a brand. An influencer mentioning #ganni 70 times probably love that type of clothing and also her followers. If your brand wants to be associated with GANNI it’s a perfect match. However, the number could also indicate how well the profile is generating in sales and engagement. Usually brands focus on sales and wouldn’t work many times if it didn’t generate positive results.

When it comes to content strategy you should consider reviewing previous sponsored content and try to understand what engages. Previous Insta stories is not possible to look back on, only if you ask the influencer which is not ideal. Then it’s better to ask for advice on what worked well before.

Ask what other brands they plan to work with

If your goal with the collaboration only is brand awareness you can disregard this. But if your goal is traffic, conversion and sales you must ask the influencer about other upcoming collaborations she’s going to post. Why? The worst thing that could happen is if a similar brand posts just before your “spot”. Basically the rivale could take “all” buying power of the followers. This means when you’re trying to convert followers they’ve already bought something and the chance that they will buy something again from that influencer is lower. Of course there are exceptions...but try to avoid putting yourself in this position.

Audience overlap

An audience overlap is when two influencer share followers, their followers are overlapping. The bigger the profiles are the higher chance that they have shared followers. Usually you want to prevent overlap, as long as you don’t aim for a “retargeting effect”. To better understand this scenario I have an example below.

I made an audience overlap on @biancaingrosso and @therese (see below). There is an overlap of 344,653 followers so that’s how many people both follow @biancaingrosso and @therese.

Why is it important to know the overlap. If you’re going to collaborate with both of them you don’t want them to post close to each other. Both influencers will communicate a similar message which will be received twice by the “shared” followers. This results in less “unique” reach during that time. Furthermore, if your goal is conversion they’ll compete for the same conversion. So aim for as little overlap as possible, less than 20-30% is good. If the overlap is high you can “spread” out the collaborations by scheduling them on different weeks.

Audience demographics

By knowing followers’ location and gender will be helpful in your decision. When you’re paying for a collaboration you always want to get a better price. And most of the time the price is based on number of followers. Note that there are no price structure in this space, kind of a wild west. My advice is to detect number of fake followers and use that when you’re negotiating the price. Hopefully you can get the price down.


I’ve taken out 4 things I think are extra important to do before setting up a paid collaboration. By knowing these insights you can determine if it’s the right collaboration or/and if it’s worth paying the price.

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