How to find good sponsors and partners
As you are starting to have more influence, new opportunities arise. In this case, sponsors and partners will start becoming available to you. You need to be prepared and aware, because bad opportunities will appear among them, trying to squeeze your influence or trap you with a badly configured contract.
If you are not the best legal reader, ask a friend or family member to join in with you. Make sure to read it all fully and carefully, as legal texts can hide certain requirements or limits behind the used words or within the understanding of the paragraph. This does not mean that people are trying to scam you, especially smaller firms and businesses who try to put a deal together themselves or with the wrong type of professional guidance.
Another thing is when you do not understand your own evaluation, or the partner/sponsor understands it better than you. You should learn the simple trick of evaluation. If a company offers you $X or products worth of $Y, in a timezone of Z months/weeks. How often do they pay/deliver good and what is the value you end up gaining.
Example: You get 24 bottles of Energy Drink a month for 52 weeks (12 months), where each bottle has a market value of $5. Your equation should sound like $5*24*52=$6240. The reason this is important is that you are to pay taxes off of this income (In most countries, that is) unless the partner/sponsor deducts and pays the taxes for you. If the contract does not say they do, you sure do!
The intentional value
Now that you know to read the contract, maybe even twice. It is time to think about the intention of this deal, and if your intention aligns with theirs in some way. Let us go back to the energy drinks, if your intention is to have more energy throughout the livestream, and has no problem showing their brand and maybe show it off. Their intention should be branding and be getting their brand in front of your viewers. This way both intentions align perfectly with the outcome.
When the intention aligns, look at the value of who gains the most from this. If you are a smaller channel with only a few viewers and followers, branding value through you is rather limited. However, if your viewers and followers are directly in the scope of the target audience, their value is higher to the company despite the lower numbers.
Even if your viewers are lower, your reach does not have to be. If you attend a lot of events with a lot of people, your reach may be greater than other streamers with more viewers, if their reach is limited to their viewers and followers. Understand how much influence you have, both internal and external to your brand and the value it can contribute to partners/sponsors.
Requirements and demands
Before you go through with a deal, you should gather questions to ask about your involvement. If the contract demands anything from you, make sure to understand these demands and to have them re-written if meant otherwise than written or not specified enough for your liking. Sometimes asking them to re-write a contract shows you are serious and is involved with their case directly.
You can initiate the contact
One of the things most people seem to skip, is that you can also contact potential partners and sponsors. They do not necessarily have to find you, as the market is full of potential and you may only be one of many. If you initiate the contact with them, you increase your chances if you are within the scope. It is important to have a sales pitch ready, as for why they should consider you and what you are looking for.
Try not to be specific, unless you are looking for a very specific deal. A great way to start out is by introducing yourself, the brand and what values you think is key values to them. Ask if they have done partner/sponsor-deals with livestreamers before and/or what they are looking for in (hopefully) you. If you understand their values and scope, you can adjust your final pitch to fall within their scope; if you are still interested and feel like meeting their key interests.
You should never go into a partner/sponsor deal if you are not comfortable with the deal or the agreement. If the company sets key values you are mildly against, make a proposition to have it changed. If you are not interested in certain parts, negotiate changes. If the company is difficult, be prepared to leave and call off the negotiations.
While you are busy finding sponsors or partners, do not forget yourself and your own brand. You can easily and too quickly be caught up trying to make a living that you forget to breathe and grow. Sometimes you need to earn less in order to profit more. Do not go fully overboard, just make sure the time pays itself. As your influence grows, you want space to make greater deals and maybe fade out older ones to create new opportunities.