Support from celebrities can help your cause to get headlines, reach more potential supporters, and provide support to the people who need your work.
Stars will also introduce your charity to fans and followers on their own social channels as part of the partnership. Many social media influencers are now considered to be celebs, too, so there are even more possibilities for further partnerships and collaborations.
There are a few things to think about before drafting a shortlist of possible celebrity partners. In this article, we provide advice and support to increase your chances of hooking a celeb!
Things to consider before you start
Your goal for a partnership might be to amplify your campaign’s key messages, but it is really important to think about the audience that you want to reach with those messages.
Ask yourself who the celebrity’s fan-base are. You can check out their following on social media to give you a good sense. Are these the people your work will benefit or the people who might donate to support it?
If you flip your thinking to focus on your existing audiences – how will they feel about the celebrities you would like to work with? Would a partnership with the names on your shortlist excite them?
Think about how the celebrities on your shortlist use the media targets for your campaign.
If you are targeting lifestyle magazines, but never see a celeb on your list appearing in that section of the media, the partnership may not be a good match.
Are the public perceptions of the celebrities on your list a good fit for your campaign?
Someone viewed as a celebrity activist might work well for an advocacy campaign, for example, and a celebrity with more of a ‘girl or boy next door’ vibe might be better for a family-oriented fundraising campaign.
High-profile celebrities have busy schedules. Can you learn anything about whether their schedule might work with yours before you make an approach? There is little point in making an approach to a star who is scheduled to be away filming just when you need them for interviews.
Setting up Google Alerts for the names of the celebs on your shortlist will help you learn more about how they use the media, how they are perceived, and any other charity partnerships they are involved with.
Try to shortlist celebrities who have a connection to your cause or your organisation. If they are going to be speaking about your campaign, it’s important that their passion for your work is authentic.
Think about how your ideal celebrity partners are connected to your community. Do any staff members or trustees know them? Are any of their circle of friends already supporting you?
All of these factors will help you to craft how you might approach them and strengthen your ‘ask’.
Making an approach
Once you have a shortlist of possible celebrity partners, put it in priority order and start marking approaches. Here’s how:
It is important to have a fairly solid campaign plan in place before you approach celebrities about involvement.
Although you may need to be flexible with it once you get into the detail of the celebrity’s schedule and the level of involvement they are willing to have.
Your plan should include information about the audience you want to reach, your key messages, and some sample artwork. Make sure you mention any other commercial or celebrity partners that have already said yes to being involved.
Try developing a relationship on social media first. Start liking and commenting on your target celebrity’s posts. This will also give you a good sense of their personal brand and whether it’s a good fit for your charity.
If one of the celebrities on your shortlist is affected by an issue that you work on – contact them about it. Send your condolences for a lost loved one or a message of solidarity if they have attended a protest for an issue you campaign on. Celebrities are humans – the relationship you develop with them should be two-way.
When you are ready to make the ask, put together a brief in an email and attach your campaign plan and assets.
Your email should talk about who you are, the work of your charity, why you think the celebrity might consider being involved, the campaign, what exactly you want the celebrity to do and when, the assets and partnerships you already have in place, the impact the campaign will have, and any ways that the celebrity might benefit.
Send your request through the celebrity’s agent, but if you have been interacting with your target celeb through their social media accounts, it may help to send a DM saying that you’ve emailed the agent and would love to have a conversation.
Original posted at charitydigital.org.uk