The Ultimate Guide to Sponsored Content

Creating your individual branded movies, blogs, or podcasts can require plenty of bandwidth. 

Should you’ve all the time wished to experiment with this technique, however haven’t had the time or assets to supply your individual campaigns, sponsoring content material from different corporations or influencers is perhaps the suitable technique for you.

Click here to take inspiration from the best marketing and ad campaigns we've  ever seen.

As soon as relegated to print publications, sponsored content material is prospering within the on-line advertising and marketing house. We’ll clarify what sponsored content material is, give finest practices, and supply ideas for staying inside federal promoting tips.

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Such a content material is most participating whenever you sponsor an organization or influencer who targets your core viewers and already discusses subjects that align together with your model. When that is completed proper, any point out of your model seems like a pure match relatively than an invasive commercial.

As a substitute of pondering they simply noticed an commercial, audiences ought to come away from sponsored content material feeling like they’ve discovered one thing fascinating. This makes your model look extra credible, memorable, and — most significantly — reliable. 

On the subject of branded or sponsored content material, belief is a significant component that engages potential prospects. In actual fact, when entrepreneurs sponsor content material from a trusted writer, they see a 50% larger model raise than entrepreneurs who make their very own content material. 

As branded and sponsored content material positive aspects steam, analysis continues to point out that advertising and marketing your product with high quality content material could be extremely efficient. In actual fact, content material advertising and marketing will get 3 times extra leads than paid search promoting.

Methods to Distinguish Sponsored Content material

Though sponsored content material is participating and efficient, it nonetheless sometimes will get confused with extra conventional native advertisements.

Native promoting is when a model creates editorial content material that facilities round their product. Then, they may pay a web site or writer to share it in a method that naturally flows inside an inventory of content material on their homepage. 

Right here’s an instance of a local advert that appeared on Huffington Put up’s homepage. Except for the commercial attribution underneath the headline, the put up about senior entitlements is designed to point out up on the web page similar to a daily information story. 

Native ad offers 12 senior discountsOnce you click on it anticipating a daily put up, you’re despatched to a branded article that purely highlights companies and reductions from Cash Nation.

Full page native advertisement offering senior discounts

When you would possibly wish to think about a local advert that goes on to a product web page for rapid gross sales or site visitors functions, main readers down a conversion path too quickly might flip off audiences.

Since folks could scroll previous or tune out once they see content material that’s clearly created by an advertiser, a chunk of sponsored content material created by a trusted supply is perhaps a stronger various.

When you’re prepared to start out sponsoring content material, it might nonetheless be tough to provide you with an inventory of content material concepts or establish manufacturers that you could possibly sponsor. To assist encourage you, listed here are a couple of nice examples.

Sponsored Content material Examples

Sponsored Picture or Video Content material

Most shoppers wish to see movies from manufacturers, so it’s no shock that video and photograph content material are gaining consideration from sponsors. Listed below are three nice examples of video and photograph posts: 

Good ‘n’ Enjoyable

Canine deal with model Good ‘n’ Enjoyable used some actual canine followers to get the phrase out about its chews and supply some social proof. The photograph reveals two pleased pups excitedly staring a 3 luggage of the model’s treats. 

sponsored content: goodnfun promoPicture Supply

The lovable pups belong to digital creator Dulce Randall who created the sponsored put up for the model. The sponsored put up match completely in together with her content material which follows her cute Husky and Corgi on totally different adventures. 

Michelob Extremely

Michelob sponsored a Tastemade recipe video which used the beer as an ingredient in a shrimp ceviche tostada dish. The video reveals how the beer is used as a flavoring ingredient and lists its title within the video caption. 



View this put up on Instagram


Get away the grill for this unique twist on a shrimp ceviche tostada, which is not full and not using a refreshing Michelob ULTRA Infusions Lime and Prickly Pear Cactus. #Sponsored by @MichelobULTRA #InfuseYourSummer⁠ ⁠ INGREDIENTS:⁠ 1/2 cup olive oil⁠ 1/4 cup chopped contemporary cilantro⁠ Zest and juice of two limes⁠ 2 teaspoons scorching pepper sauce⁠ 2 cloves garlic, grated⁠ 1 tablespoon tomato paste⁠ 1 teaspoon kosher salt⁠ 1/2 teaspoon floor black pepper⁠ 1 pound medium (21 to 26) shrimp, deveined and tails eliminated⁠ ⁠ CEVICHE:⁠ 1 cup Roma tomatoes, small cube⁠ 1/2 cup dragonfruit, small cube⁠ 1/2 cup contemporary mango, small diced⁠ 1/2 cup purple onion, small diced⁠ 1/3 cup cilantro leaves, chopped⁠ 1 small Serrano, finely chopped⁠ 1/4 cup contemporary lime juice⁠ 1/4 cup mango juice⁠ 2 tablespoons olive oil⁠ 1 teaspoon tomato paste⁠ 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce⁠ 1 teaspoon kosher salt⁠ ⁠ GUACAMOLE:⁠ 2 massive, ripe avocados, minimize in half and pitted⁠ 1 lime, sliced in half⁠ 1 small purple onion, minimize into 1/2-inch rings⁠ 4 cloves garlic, peeled⁠ 1 small jalapeño, sliced in half and seeded⁠ 3 tablespoons olive oil⁠ 2 teaspoons sea salt⁠ 1 teaspoon floor black pepper⁠ 1/2 cup cilantro leaves, chopped⁠ Tostadas⁠ Lime wedges⁠ ⁠ Steps continued within the feedback under.⁠ ⁠

A put up shared by Tastemade (@tastemade) on

On this instance, Michelob was capable of sponsor related content material and get a pure product plug with out altering Tastemade’s video recipe fashion. 

One other wonderful thing about this content material is that it doesn’t simply cater to beer drinkers or Michelob-specific followers. Somebody who doesn’t drink beer repeatedly, however needs to prepare dinner this recipe as proven, would possibly nonetheless have a cause to buy Michelob Extremely. 

Within the small enterprise world, a neighborhood restaurant would possibly sponsor a recipe video like this created by a meals blogger to point out off a meal they prepare dinner at their restaurant. You may also see a meals or ingredient vendor comparable sponsor a recipe video the place their components are listed. 


This Instagram put up from Imbibe, a weblog that informs customers of fascinating alcoholic drinks, reveals off pictures of Seedip, a non-alcoholic spirit.

The caption directs audiences to the account’s bio the place they’ll discover the hyperlink to a recipe that features Seedip as an ingredient. It additionally describes the drink and makes use of hashtags like #sponsored to sign that the content material was paid for.

That is one other instance of how sponsoring content material from a model that aligns properly with yours can create a extra pure feeling marketing campaign. 

Such a sponsored fashion is perhaps useful to different corporations within the meals and beverage trade. For instance, if a neighborhood wine brewery sponsored a restaurant’s social put up which highlighted a brand new line of wines, this might assist the wine model acquire consciousness and potential purchases from the restaurant’s followers.

Sponsored Podcasts

Podcasting is rising. In actual fact, in 2018, we found that 17% of entrepreneurs deliberate so as to add podcasting to their technique. 

Whereas huge manufacturers like GE and Microsoft have already created their very own reveals, different entrepreneurs have targeted on sponsoring podcasts that relate to their subject or have the same audience. Sponsoring a podcast permits entrepreneurs to realize consciousness from listeners with out having to place effort and time into creating their very own content material from scratch.

Listed below are two examples:

Rise and Grind

This 10-episode podcast sequence was sponsored by ZipRecruiter and hosted by Shark Tank’s Daymon John. The sequence ran in correlation with the launch of John’s e book, additionally titled Rise and Grind.

The content material aligned properly with each John and ZipRecruiter because it included interviews from entrepreneurs and enterprise leaders, profession and interview ideas, and motivational recommendation. ZipRecruiter is sometimes talked about, however the content material is especially editorial in nature.

Right here’s one of many podcast’s mini-episodes, titled “Motivational Minute: Take the Shot.”


For corporations in B2B or highly-professional fields, sponsoring a podcast that options executive-level ideas and recommendation permits your viewers to see how in contact your model is with its trade.

A sponsored podcast may additionally inform new audiences with comparable pursuits about your model once they tune in to listen to an interview. 

My Brother, My Brother and Me

The My Brother, My Brother and Me podcast, also called MBMBaM, is a comedic present that touches on information and popular culture. After they have a sponsor, they provide you with a subject that pertains to the advertiser or use product placement methods. 

Probably the most notable and excessive examples was once they hosted a “Household Enjoyable Hour” sponsored by Totinos. Throughout the episode, they gave a quick historical past of Totino’s, mentioned their favourite snacks from the corporate, and performed video games that included Totino’s meals. This was thought of as a model new technique on the time and was famous on websites like Vulture.


Whereas that is an uncommon instance the place product placement takes up many of the present, it demonstrates how content material creators can develop one thing distinctive and nonetheless centered round a product.

Sponsored Influencer Content material

At the moment, 80% of entrepreneurs report that influencer advertising and marketing is an efficient technique.  Whereas many entrepreneurs have taken half in co-marketing with influencers, some have additionally sponsored their content material.

One of many platforms the place influencer advertising and marketing thrives most is Instagram. Listed below are a couple of examples of how manufacturers are sponsoring influencer content material on the platform:

NordicTrack Sponsors Ben Gravy

sponsored content example: nordic trackPicture Supply

On this humorous clip, semi professional surfer & vlogger Ben Gravy paperwork how utilizing a NordicTrack stationary bike has helped him recuperate from a browsing harm. 

The video follows Gravvy as he hilariously goes by means of his new exercise routine on the bike when he cannot experience the waves. The bike helps him proceed to deal with constructing leg power and cardio as he recovers. The Instagram reel is humorous, relatable, and reveals the product in motion.

OTOTO Sponsors Hungry Artist NY

sponsored content example: Hungry Artist NY Picture Supply

Kitchen product firm OTOTO made a tasty collaboration with influencer foodie Hungry Artist NY. Since Justin (AKA Hungry Artist) is understood for his drool-inducing meals content material, OTOTO was capable of work it is merchandise seamlessly right into a recipe for garlic scallion noodles with steak. 

On this case the featured product was a pair of OTOTO’s tongs used to flip the garlic bread and deal with the new cookie sheet to maintain Justin from burning himself. It wasn’t pressured and utilized a easy callout that did not interrupt the circulate of the video.  

CR7 Footwear Sponsors Cristiano Rinaldo

On this put up, Cristiano Rinaldo, a soccer star and the most-followed individual on Instagram, shares an image of himself enjoyable in CR7 Footwear. 

Cristiano is not any stranger to sponsored posts and he has mastered the artwork of pure product plugs. As a result of the photograph reveals him lounging and studying a e book, relatively than simply his sneakers, followers would possibly really feel like they’re seeing a behind-the-scenes photograph of him, relatively than a promotion.

Since Cristiano is a serious athlete and influencer who’s really helpful attire prior to now, viewers of this put up would possibly belief and observe his shoe endorsements, even when the footwear is not athletic. 

Whereas the sponsorship of an athlete appears perfect for corporations that promote sporting items or clothes, this placement reveals how a serious influencer can efficiently promote a variety of merchandise that are not simply restricted to their trade.

Coach Sponsors Selena Gomez

Right here’s an instance the place Coach sponsored an Instagram put up from Selena Gomez, the previous most-followed individual on Instagram. Within the put up’s caption, she shares particulars a couple of Coach outfit she’s carrying.

It is a good instance of sponsor and promoter alignment. Coach is a high-fashion firm and Selena Gomez repeatedly shares her outfits and ideas about style on her social platforms. To viewers, this would possibly really feel like her ordinary posts the place she casually shares what she’s carrying. 

On a smaller scale, this sponsored content material technique may very well be useful for ecommerce shops or boutiques who wish to promote their merchandise by paying somebody with a big following to take pictures with them.

Lulus Sponsors Lexi Mars

Influencer Lexi Mars has revealed a couple of sponsored Instagram posts for Lulus. In these posts, she places on a couple of of their outfits and reveals off different equipment from the model. 

Like different influencers on this listing, she tags Lulus in her posts. This allows her followers to go to their account, be taught extra about their model, and probably observe them. 

Within the video put up under, she tries on attire from Lulus and captions the video as “outfit concepts for commencement.”

Just like the Selena Gomez instance, this sponsorship aligns properly with each the clothes firm and the influencer’s manufacturers.

Lexi repeatedly posts photos of her outfits and movies with style ideas, so this video won’t appear uncommon or pressured to her followers. The fashion of clothes can also be much like the outfits she wears in different photos, so followers who bear in mind her ordinary style selections may not be disrupted by the advert. 

As a result of Lexi additionally highlights that these are commencement outfits, she would possibly interact members of her following who’re graduating, as folks looking out Instagram for commencement gown inspiration.

Such a influencer technique is perhaps useful to boutiques, bodily shops, or ecommerce outlets that wish to promote their seasonal or event-related clothes.

Tractor Provide Sponsors A Canine Named Stella

On this sponsored put up from @ADogNamedStella, Stella’s proprietor movies her exploring s Tractor Provide retailer together with her household. Within the video, the canine and youngsters play with toys and gadgets on the cabinets and there are ample pictures taken across the retailer. The video additionally reveals pleasant workers taking part in with the canine.

Though there are some detailed pictures of the shop, this video continues to be targeted on telling the canine’s story, which makes the content material a bit extra fascinating than a generic advertising and marketing video.

By sponsoring the content material of a preferred canine influencer, who has over 284,000 followers, Tractor Provide is perhaps spreading consciousness about its merchandise to canine homeowners and canine lovers that may not know they promote gadgets apart from landscaping provides. 

Not like many sponsored items, which regularly spotlight on-line companies on merchandise, this content material additionally creatively reveals off a bodily enterprise. Sponsored content material like this may very well be an efficient approach to exhibit merchandise in a small or native store that doesn’t supply a web based retailer simply but. 

Sponsored Articles

Sponsored articles have been round for years. Whereas they have been widespread in print publications, they’ve simply made the leap to blogs and on-line information websites. 

Based on a examine by Neilsen and Mode Media, shoppers spend 2.5 minutes studying a sponsored article. That’s roughly the identical period of time that they spend studying an ordinary editorial piece.

Right here’s one instance of sponsored article content material from Huffington Put up.

Sleep Quantity

In a chunk sponsored by the Sleep Quantity mattress firm, Huffington Put up readers are supplied a quiz and a slideshow on the science of sleep.

Sponsored content from Sleep Number discussing Sleep

Not like the native advert from Huffington Put up that was proven above, this piece has the identical design as all the opposite editorial posts on the web site. It additionally has editorial newspegs and credibly sourced info together with a truth from the CDC.

Within the meat of the put up, there is just one point out of Sleep Quantity. In addition they embody sponsorship language on the finish relatively than within the center or firstly. This makes the put up really feel extra editorial and fewer like an advert. 

This instance looks as if it will be of worth to audiences who wish to be taught extra in regards to the science of sleep.

The quiz and scientific info additionally make it really feel extra participating and credible. A person who reads this or takes the quiz would possibly assume that Sleep Quantity is a go-to mattress firm as a result of they’ve been affiliated with editorial content material about sleep.

Sponsoring editorial content material like this may very well be technique for companies with an viewers base that has pursuits in studying information or blogs on-line. 

For instance, a gymnasium would possibly sponsor a chunk on health ideas for the aged within the well being part of their native newspaper. With a chunk like that, audiences who go to the newspaper website or choose up the bodily paper would possibly be taught extra about why staying match is essential and resolve to affix the gymnasium.

FTC Sponsored Content material

Although sponsored content material is perhaps extra priceless to a buyer than a conventional advert, it is nonetheless legally thought of a type of promoting and is topic to particular tips. You’ll nonetheless have to observe the Federal Commerce Fee’s internet advertising and advertising and marketing tips.

On social media platforms, acknowledging that content material is sponsored can get difficult. In 2017, the FTC despatched greater than 90 letters and revealed a web based announcement reminding influencers and types to obviously state once they have a “materials connection” to a model.

Which means that an organization or influencer should disclose when one other firm has given them a cost or one other useful resource in return for publishing an endorsement or sponsored content material

To keep away from any regulatory points, many influencers and types now use a hashtag akin to #advert or #sponsored on social platforms if there isn’t a different approach to clearly disclose a sponsorship in a put up. Hashtagging appears to be a go-to on Instagram, which presently has over 2.5 million posts marked with “#sponsored.”

When you ought to take time to learn up on all of the FTC necessities that would influence your campaigns, listed here are the most important tips to remember when posting or publishing sponsored content material:

  • Make sure that the content material is freed from any deceptive claims or lies. For instance, a complement firm shouldn’t say their nutritional vitamins treatment a illness once they haven’t confirmed to take action.
  • Even in case you are posting on social media, clearly disclose when content material is sponsored and who the sponsor is. With this disclosure, audiences will know that some features of the content material have been paid for.
  • In case your content material is in your web site or your sponsor’s, be sure the font of the disclosure is legible. The textual content and coloration ought to be simple to see and ideally totally different from the physique copy’s fashion. A notice that content material is an commercial, sponsored, promoted or introduced by an organization ought to seem within the put up itself in addition to close to the headline if a CTA for it’s featured on a homepage. 

Disclaimer: We’re not legal professionals, and the above should not be taken as authorized recommendation. Seek the advice of a authorized skilled.

Suggestions for Creating Sponsored Content material

When working with a sponsor to create fascinating and compelling content material, listed here are a couple of ideas to remember:

  • Intention to sponsor content material that draws and delights your viewers. If it’s pleasing, they’ll proceed to devour it and probably click on in your hyperlinks.
  • When searching for the content material creator, select an organization, influencer, or writer with the same viewers or mission. If folks see an endorsement or sponsored put up from an entity they belief, they’ll be extra conscious of a product and extra seemingly to purchase it. This will even make any plugs or product mentions really feel much less like an advert.
  • Work with the sponsor to select a subject that aligns together with your targets and your viewers’s pursuits. For instance, in the event you’re a make-up firm, sponsoring an influencer’s tutorial that highlights your merchandise is perhaps useful.
  • Give attention to creating participating content material first and product plugs second. Should you’re content material feels prefer it’s solely promoting a product, folks would possibly tune out.
  • Sponsor content material that goes past weblog formatting. Be sure you think about movies, pictures, and podcasts. These three areas are gaining increasingly more curiosity from entrepreneurs and shoppers alike.


Sponsored content material can permit you to attain new audiences and acquire priceless belief from potential prospects. However, not like native advertisements, you don’t should sacrifice your crew’s bandwidth to create it. 

As you begin searching for somebody to sponsor, preserve a watch out for folks or manufacturers that align together with your mission and really feel like a pure match. 

Should you’re excited by the thought of branded content material, however aren’t fascinated with working with a sponsor, take a look at these participating examples of native promoting.

Editor’s notice: This text was initially revealed in July 2019 and has been up to date for comprehensiveness. 
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