How we engage and work with influencers on a no-fee basis

Influencers often charge a small fortune, and it’s a price many brands choose to pay to help them build brand awareness and to start those authentic conversations with their target audiences. Whilst it may be tempting for many to spend large amounts of money on influencer campaigns, it’s not always possible – or needed! – for smaller brands who may lack the budget to do so. Micro influencers are a very viable option for no-fee collabs, based on their hyper-engaged audiences and willingness to work with emerging and smaller brands. Additionally, considering other options such as influencer gifting campaigns or working with influencers on a pro bono basis may also be strong option. However, this isn’t always as easy or straight forward as it sounds.

As a starting point, it is vital to have connections and relationships with a large network of influencers in different categories and niche markets. It takes years to build these and only by working with influencers on several collaborations for a variety of brands will they begin to trust you and consider working on a no-fee basis.

Tapping into seasonal hooks is another way to build a successful influencer campaign, with many awareness days or months out there to potentially suit your brand.


In celebration of World Mental Health day 2020, we launched our #BehindTheSmile campaign for mental health app Thrive, collaborating with over 30 influencers to reach an audience of 8.5 million people. We asked influencers and celebrities within our network to help us raise awareness of mental health issues by sharing stories of a time they seemed happy on the outside but were struggling internally. What made this campaign special and successful was that the issue was so close to the hearts of the influencers and celebrities cherry picked by us to ask for their involvement. The combination of a great app, a trending topic, and an ask that required the influencer to post not only about our client, but about something that truly meant something to them, led to incredible results.

In just 24 hours, the Instagram page registering a 453% increase in followers, while the app itself saw 800 downloads in just one day.


When MOMA launched their ambient oat milk range, they quickly rose to the top of the category with impressive sales in their first year. As they began to expand the range and introduce a brand-new range of chilled oat milks, we were brought on board to support the launch and raise awareness of their entire oat milk range through a targeted campaign.

Knowing that the oat milk sector is incredibly crowded with many household name competitors, alongside our media campaign we developed an influencer engagement strategy centred on educating audiences of the quality, superior taste and ‘foamability’ of MOMA in comparison to other brands.

To do this, we worked with a range of micro influencers across the vegan, sustainability, food & lifestyle sectors to gift them with new MOMA oat milks in return for stylised content that would be posted to their channels, and repurposed on MOMA channels too. To ensure each partnership was authentic, we worked with each influencer to develop content themes that would work well on their channels, and that would showcase the premium quality of the product too. This included recipe videos, ‘a day in the life’ content and more.

Over the course of a short term campaign we secured x20 non-paid partnerships leading to over 30+ of organic influencer content featuring the MOMA oat milks.


To support the launch of an exciting new collection, Citizen Tyusosa, we were briefed to recruit a range of influencer partners who could create content that showcased the eye-catching and colourful new collection.

To do this, we first looked to engage with key horological influencers who regularly reviewed and featured new watch launches on their channels. Because of this authentic interest in the watch industry, we were able to negotiate non-paid partnerships for Citizen by gifting each influencers with a piece from the new range, allowing them to be one of the first to review the timepieces.

We then also looked to key lifestyle and fashion influencers too, who could showcase how the watches could be styled day-to-day. Again our gifting-first approach here worked well to build authentic partnerships and to generate beautiful content for the brand that could be repurposed on their owned channels too.

If you are thinking about influencer collaborations but don’t have the budget to spend, get in touch with us to discuss how we can engage our large network of influencers and collaborate with them on a no-fee basis.

Get in touch with the team