Negotiating with influencers

When you’ve finally received some replies from the influencer you contacted, it’s time to start negotiating. If you’re lucky, the influencer will accept your collaboration proposal just as you send it. More realistically, you’ll have to do a bit of back-and-forth to iron out the details.


Leave a margin of about 15-20 days if you’re going to be negotiating with macro or mega influencers, and a bit less if you’re entering into discussions with nano or micro influencers.


Regardless of how your negotiations go, you always want to clarify the following points before ending your discussions:

3.3. Negotiating with influencers

  • Timing of incentive (delivery estimation, whether for fee or product)
  • Publication timing (deadlines or windows)
  • Content review (how/when you’ll review the created content)
  • Number of publications (and how many of each type)
  • Publication content (anything you want the influencer to include)

Negotiating with different types of influencers

Negotiations vary based on the type of influencers you’re dealing with.

  • Micro influencers who accept most collaborations
    When working with these influencers, as well as with nano influencers, negotiations are minimal. If the product or service is appealing to them, most nano and micro influencers will accept your proposal without trying to negotiate for a fee.

  • Micro influencers who are more demanding
    Once micro influencers start to do more collaborations and move up the ranks, they’ll start to also charge a fee, although not a very high one. Product might not be enough here, and you might have to pay something, especially if you want the collaboration to include posts. It may be easier to negotiate a collaboration using only stories.

  • Macro and Mega influencers
    Once you get into the major leagues of influencer marketing, negotiations are going to be necessary and a bit more challenging. The first reply to your proposal will be from the influencer’s manager, presenting their fees for various types of publications. Try asking for a pack of publications - more publications over a longer period of time but at a discounted rate.

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Deciding if you need a contract

While everything is always more secure with a contract, it’s not always necessary when making deals with influencers.


  • When deals are made on product alone
    When a collaboration is accepted in exchange for products or services, a contract isn’t usually necessary. However, if your product has a very high value (a motorcycle, for example), you’ll want to put the collaboration to pen and paper.

  • When working with nano or micro influencers
    When working with nano or micro influencers, who aren’t as demanding as top influencers, you can probably close most deals based on product alone. And even when they do ask for a fee, they usually ask for minimal amounts, so you probably won’t need to sign a contract. Just make sure you have your agreement in some form of writing, like an email.

    Not every influencer is going to give you perfect publications, but no sweat. The important thing is the general impact of the campaign, which usually turns out to be positive. Influencers at this level seem to balance each other out: some might publish worse than expected, and others better. Don’t forget that it’s good to give these creators the freedom and time they need to create the best possible content.

  • When working with macro or mega influencers
    Here you’ll almost always need a contract. The amount of money paid as incentive is usually high, and for that, you’ll want to ensure that all the conditions of the collaboration are agreed to in writing.

Following up on negotiations

If your negotiations get stalled because the influencer isn’t replying to you, just politely follow up. There are a few steps you can take to follow up in different ways:


  • Emails - If they don’t answer your first email, try sending a second or even third.
  • DM - If they don’t reply to your emails, try reaching out with a direct message on Instagram.
  • Comments - If the influencer doesn’t reply to your emails or DMs, comment on one of their posts to politely remind them to check their emails/DMs

If you don’t get a reply via any of these, it could be because of various factors. Maybe that influencer has stopped collaborating. Maybe they’ve had something happen in their personal life to take them away from social media. Who knows! In any event, at this point it’s best to move on to contacting other influencers.

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