The cold DMs that actually convert ambassadors

Once you've identified the best potential ambassadors, here's how to smoothly slide into their DMs đź’Ś

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Mayank Sehgal

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In the past, we’ve written about how to find ambassadors, the process of finding ambassadors, effectively leveraging ambassadors, and the different mindsets to take when doing all of this.

Today, we’ll discuss something a bit more tactical—how do you actually write the DMs that will go out to these potential ambassadors? How long should they be? What should you say? How aggressive should you be?

Do you build a relationship first or do you go straight for the kill? Do you define terms from the very beginning or do you play it out?

So many questions. Let’s start answering ✨

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Introduce yourself

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To followers

Your followers already know your brand—so you shouldn’t forget to acknowledge that.

It still doesn’t hurt to mention again your values and what you stand for—to reinforce them or otherwise let people know about them if they didn’t already.

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To non-followers

These folks don’t know your brand—so you need to be mindful of that. Put yourself in their shoes and think of all the questions they might have in their mind, and make sure to address them.

This includes who you are, what you do, why you do it, why they should care.

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Followers of related accounts

For these guys, you can mention that since they’re interested in [x] brand, you thought that it would be relevant for them for you to reach out.

This is to make sure that you don’t come off as a complete stranger.

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State your objective

Not all messages are created equally. The best messages know what they’re chasing after, what they’re looking for—whether it’s a relationship, a response, simple appreciation, or something specific.

They then subtly communicate this idea to the person receiving and reading the message, without sounding (or being) too pressuring.

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Product seeding

This is when you’re reaching out to someone and offering them a product, for free, with the sole objective of building a genuine relationship.

You’re pretty much just giving away a free product and seeing what happens. And this is a fantastic strategy when done with the right people.

In this situation, it’s in your best interest to be patient and hold off asking for anything in your first message, and leaving it until much later in the relationship.

You should use phrases like “No strings attached”, or “Try it and let us know what you think”—you get the idea.

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Cody Wittick wrote an incredibly amazing thread about this, and I’ve linked a relevant Tweet from this thread above. You should read the entire thread if you’re interested!

Product seeding warrants an entirely different post about it, and we’ll definitely publish something on this topic at a point in the future.

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Collaboration proposal

In this situation, you’re proposing a collaboration right off the bat—it’s a classic approach: low-risk in the short term, but unclear long-term relationship potential.

The vast majority of collaborations are going to be one-off, and it’s very much possible that the ambassador/influencer kinda forgets about you after the collab is done and dusted.

When you’re writing a DM for this objective, you want to be clear about what you want—a collaboration.

You don’t have to state the terms of the collab in the first message—but you definitely want to give the message that you’re looking for something in return.

Use phrases like “We’d like to do a collaboration” or “We’d like a make a partnership”—you get the idea.

This is so that it’s very clear to them from the beginning that you’re expecting something in return.


Starting a conversation

Sometimes you don’t want anything—you just want to start a conversation and see where things go.

Alessandra from Bombinate said this about her ambassador outreach:

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How do you find and choose these ambassadors to work for you? How do you determine a good fit or not?

It might surprise you, but we don’t look at the numbers first. That actually comes as the very last validation point.

First of all, we want to see people that share our values—what kind of house do they have? How do they shop? What kind of brands do they wear? We first check this.

Then we start having a conversation with them. We interact, comment on their feeds, exchange a few DMs, we see if we have a good feeling going. And only after that, we check their community to see whether it’s engaged, and then we ask them to be a part of our community and invite them to share content with us.

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I think in this situation, you should still always be providing some kind of value in your message—what would make them even open it and consider it?

Write a genuine compliment on their feed, ask them a question about something you think they might love answering about—generally try and build a relationship like you would with a friend.

In every case, make sure that your message is genuine, and looks like it’s coming from an actual person, not a bot.

End the message with your first name and title at the company—or even if it’s just “Mayank from Ubu”.

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Write the copy

Your copy is everything. This is what will make or break your ambassador outreach.

Aside from obvious things like making sure that your grammar and formatting is free of errors, let’s look at some other things to consider when writing your outreach DM copy.

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Length

Ideally, short and sweet is the best approach, while still including everything you want to include—your introduction, your objective, and your call to action.

Something around 150-200 words is the ideal length, shorter the better.

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Structure

You should always be structuring your message.

No one likes reading a wall of text. Split up your message into 3-4 different parts:

Introduction/who you are
— Speak a little bit about your brand and what you stand for.

Why you’re reaching out to them specifically
— Here you want to add elements of their profile that stood out to you, and how it links to the first part about the things that you stand for.
— Read the article on segmenting!

What you want them to do
— Always make sure that your message has a call-to-action.
— Make it clear to the other person how to respond to your message.


Outro/thanks

Voice messages?

Something I learnt recently when chatting with a brand that we work with at Ubu was how they like to send voice messages to select influencers to really show that it’s not an automated message and that they specially took out the time to reach out to them.

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Following up

Sometimes people don’t reply immediately—and that’s fine.

Messages get stuck in the Instagram “Requests” folder—in this situation, a follow up message doesn’t necessarily work because they’re still not gonna see it if they forget to check the folder.

In this case, write them a comment on their post—pay a genuine compliment and then mention that you’ve written them a DM!

Other times, people simply forget to respond—you can see this if they’ve left you on “seen”. In this case, send a quick follow up—and don’t just say “following up on this”!

Add some value—maybe mention a recent post or story they’ve made, or add in some additional information that would strengthen your message further, and entice them to respond to you!

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Wrapping up

What are your thoughts? What have you learnt in your experience reaching out to influencers? Reach out to me at mayank at getubu dot com l and let me know ✨