January 16, 2017

Working With Brands | Design Your Own Media Kit

Working with brands

how do i start working with brands?

Want to know the blogging question I’m asked the most often? “How DO you go about working with brands?” The short answer would be, how much time do you have…as my answer will be L O N G!

Before the advent of bloggers freely sharing advice on their own blogs, this was definitely the question I asked the most often…both of others and myself! So I thought I’d kick off a new series here in Hints & Tips to cover some of the most common points about working with brands, all broken down into bite sized pieces.

Whether you’re just starting out as a blogger or are a bit more established and ready to take that next step towards generating an income, the question as a whole can honestly feel a bit daunting. I had no clue and so just tried a number of things over the years to see how they worked out.

Some fell flat, some flew and I aim to keep figuring out better approaches and strategies as the landscape continually shifts… but honestly, I don’t see it as a one size fits all secret formula.

So in an age where plenty of brands are realising the value in hopping on board the good ship Digital Influencer, I’m happy to share my own tips for you to try if you wish. I hope you find them useful!

how to start working with brands design a media kit

The media kit

Having thought about how to structure this series, I decided that a media kit makes a good jumping in topic. It is after all your CV as far as your blog and social media channels are concerned and should give a stylish snapshot of what they, and you, are all about.

This has been one HUGE learning curve for me – my own media kit has had many incarnations and caused me more than my fair share of frowns and cursing too!

It’s been a Word Document, a PDF and an expensive third party design that I couldn’t actually edit myself because I have a blind spot when it comes to certain Adobe applications. See above re those frown lines and all the cursing.

Eventually light dawned on marbled (& furrowed) head – I’ll use Canva! Having come across this design software after reading another helpful hint post about creating graphics, I started to use it for making collages a couple of years ago but didn’t appreciate you can do so much more with it. It’s web based and its free!

My mistake was not signing off from all other blog tasks for a day and allowing myself enough time to explore Canva and it’s options to see what I could come up with. Its no good trying to fit in designing yourself a quick media kit whilst flitting from one daily task to another and getting distracted by deadlines, emails and social media etc. Duh!

And finally, it was when I read Ella Gregory’s e-book, The Ultimate Guide To Blogging, that I realised I was over complicating my media kit – her helpful tips were the catalyst in finally helping me to get it right. If you haven’t yet downloaded Ella’s book and you’re serious about blogging, download it here now!

And so to a quick Canva overview that will hopefully help to get you started with a media kit design. I’ve tried not to go into too much detail as it’s very intuitive and if you allow yourself that day to get acquainted, you won’t need any hand holding.

Said by one who is NOT technically minded at all! Just sign up and off you go!

A few screen shots to help get you started…

Choose a design

Once logged in, have a browse and select a design. Keep in mind that some are free and some have a small download cost for as little as $1 per design. This is something to think about if you want to update yours monthly.

Personally, I find the free ones to be brilliant once you gain confidence in adapting them.

preview your design

Upload any images you’d like to include by dragging and dropping from your hard drive and then arrange and re-size.

Add your images

Play about with your design until you get the look you’re after, making sure it’s in keeping with the aesthetics of your blog and incorporates your logo if you have one. Use the Elements section over in left hand bar to add text, shapes, colours etc

Get designing

The headings and info that I now include is the “to the point stuff” that I consider to be important to communicate to a brand.  How you populate yours should be unique to your own blog and give an instant snapshot of your brand.

If in doubt, look to your About page for reference. Which reminds me – I REALLY need to update mine!

Don’t forget to include any text links for blog landing pages, social media accounts etc. A link option appears over in the right hand top bar when you click on a piece of text or heading.

Download as a PDF, save to your hard drive…

Download as a PDF

…et voila!

a simple media kit designed with Canva

NB – this one looks a little blurry as I’ve put it into an image format for the blog but it does come out nice and clear once downloaded in PDF format.

Make sure you proof read as many times as needed and check that all the links are working before sending out.

It’s super easy to update with any changes or your stats as and when needed. You can save any creations to a folder – I set up Branded Docs and keep everything there.

Create a folder

Make new copies

Each time you want to update, find your previous version, select File from the menu bar, click Make A Copy and then rename over on the top right hand side before downloading again.

Once I had the format for this profile document part of my media kit nailed down, I used similar documents and adapted their design to create other elements to go with it. These might be a Pricing Structure, Gifting Policy and a Collaboration Portfolio showcasing past brand work.

Having them filed separately means that you don’t have to send everybody everything and can mix and match as appropriate to the situation.

And there you have it – a simple, free and effective media kit. Its really up to you how far you take it – the sky’s the limit!

For the next post in the series, I’ll be covering what I’ve learned (so far!) about pitching ideas to brands you’d love to work with and what to consider when they approach you.

Let me know what you think of the series – all feedback and ideas welcome in the comments section below!

Happy Designing!

📝  STYLE CREDITS: Marble Mouse Pad – Etsy | Bulldog Clip – Kikki K | How To Style Your Brand book | Stapler – Kate Spade | Pencil Cup – Kate Spade | Scissors by HAY at Amara Living | Baies Candle – Diptyque

15 comments on “Working With Brands | Design Your Own Media Kit”

  1. Thank You! Thank You! This post – and the next one is exactly what I need right now! And you’ve reminded me about Ella Gregory’s e-book. I did download it, but have to read it, so I must dig it out.

    We must get together soon!


    1. Yay! So pleased its useful Jo! And yes – Ella’s book is just brilliant. Succinct and just whats needed to get you on track with some serious blogging. Yes we must – I have a busy rest of January but hopefully we can get together at some point after the hero workshop?
      Speak soon Lovely!
      A xx

  2. Can’t tell you how useful – I have to produce this sort of thing for my Masters – the publishing bit anyway – and now I know how! Booked for the February date too. Just call me ‘disciple’. L xxx

    1. Thats so brilliant to hear that it works for so much more than bloggers Lou – happy to be of help and thrilled that you’ll be on the February workshop! And you finally get to meet Laura and the amazing hero team – not to mention see the shop!
      Lots of love! A xx

  3. So, so useful thanks Amanda. I’ve been meaning to explore Canva more (when I have a spare day, ha!) and this is the push I needed. The one ? I always have around a media kit that supplies stats/follower numbers is that i don’t like the idea of brands keeping that on file and then those numbers being long out of date. I guess it’s not really an issue though?? The rest of the info is great and your kit looks so slick. Thanks for sharing (am pinning it as we speak) xx

    1. So pleased its helpful Kat – take the leap and book the day out! You’ll be so pleased you did! Don’t worry too much about the numbers – luckily lots of brands are not so concerned with the numbers now. And if its a brand you really love and wish to maintain a working relationship with, then why not send through an updated one to your contact once a quarter or twice a year?
      Have fun Canva’ing!
      Amanda xx

  4. So interesting! Love your page and yes Canva is a life saver for time poor but needing professional looking media! From a product viewpoint where would I find said media kit? Do you post it selectively and directly? How would a product find this info would they just email you?

  5. Hi Amanda, thank you that’s really helpful – both the book link and the step by step guide to finding a way around Canva. I’ve used it a little and knew there was lots more to discover – this is the nudge i needed! Looking forward to the pitching post too.
    Nancy x

  6. Hi Amanda,

    This is amazing! Thank you SO much for sharing all this brilliant info. We are in desperate need of a media kit and Canva sounds brilliant. It also sounds really useful for collages! Thank you!!!
    Alex (1/2 of Wear & Where – we met at The White Co. event at Le Manoir) xx

    1. Hey Alex!
      Ah you’re so welcome – happy to share the Canva love! Hope you’re well and enjoyed the Holiday Season? That Le Manoir/White Company event certainly ramped up the festive factor didn’t it?
      Amanda xx

  7. Thank you so much for the wonderfully informative and helpful workshop at Hero in Stockbridge today. As you can see, I’ve been a busy, checking out the links you shared with us!! Here’s to a weekend of creative design! Watch this space. Have a great weekend (and enjoy your Friday champagne – I’m with you on that!!)

    1. Hey Helen!
      I’m so glad you found the workshop helpful! I always love meeting participants and hearing about what they hope to achieve from starting a blog!
      I hope you like Canva – its so great and I’ve found it a complete godsend when it comes to graphics and PDFs etc!
      Have a wonderful week ahead!
      Amanda xx

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