As an influencer or creator our goal is to get brand collabs, but depending on what you stand for and what you are promoting in your space, you should keep a checklist of non-negotiables that you consider before accepting a brand collab.
I personally have never been a huge fan of saying yes to every brand, but you’re more than welcome to do so. In the beginning it’s exciting and you’re mostly starstruck at the idea that brands want to work with you. After a while you start to realize that some brand collabs were not worth the time or effort and that is okay too because at least you had the experience.
Today I’m sharing 5 things to consider for brand collabs.
Non Inclusive / No Diversity (Whatever That Means For You)
If a brand reaches out to you and wants to collab with you does the brand and/or product appear inclusive? Does the brand or product appeal to a diverse audience? Diversity in your own terms; maybe it’s the models, maybe it’s the product and who it’s for; maybe it’s the range of options available. You should always consider what the overall brand is about before you say yes.
Sometimes a brand has something really great, but it isn’t a fit for my audience and I know the return would be low, there is absolutely no point in me doing the collab. You define what diversity means in your own life and that should be a standard you keep when it comes to accepting the right brand collabs for yourself. Don’t settle!
What do you stand for? What are your values? You pretty much set that tone when you start to promote yourself or speak up about certain issues/topics/things that happen. If a brand is encouraging the promotion of something that you don’t agree with please consider that before accepting a brand collab.
Don’t have people questioning your integrity over a brand partnership. A prime example of this is the whole blow up with Kim Kardashian West and the Flat Tummy Tea Appetite Suppressant Lollipops. Now it’s no secret that she and other major celebs promote Flat Tummy Tea, but her audience is women of all ages and when that post went live they did not respond well to it. They came for her so much she took the post down. Sure we’re not that surprised, Mrs. West is definitely one to beat to her own drum, but she really could have done better with that especially given that she has daughters and most of her audience is women.
You know yourself, but you’re also presenting a certain image on social media and your audience will let you know ASAP if they are not with it. Don’t have people questioning your integrity over a brand partnership. It’s not worth it.
Negative Backlash / Negative Association
Flat Tummy Tea, Fashion Nova, Dove, GUCCI and a plethora of other brands have definitely had their fair share of negative attention; whether it be the products themselves, the ads or how they get the ideas to create them.
Is the controversy or drama surrounding the brand worth accepting the collab? This will be up to you to decide, maybe the money is worth it, maybe the product is worth it, I don’t know. What I do know is, when you send over your media kit or a brand or PR firm looks at your feed and see’s the brands you have collaborated with that could be a red flag for them. It isn’t going to make or break your influencer career, but these are things that become associated with you and YOUR BRAND.
You’ll have to decide if the brand collab is worth accepting.
Quality is a very important factor for me because I have set myself up as a brand in the luxury field. If I started promoting flimsy, thin or low quality products ya’ll might be confused on what quality I actually “stand behind”. There is always room for improvement, but what you create consistency around is what people are expecting to see.
If a brand reaches out to collab, go look at the product, look at the models, look at the website, look at EVERYTHING. You can tell the quality that has gone into something. It’s not to say that the brand isn’t going to improve or level up in their own right, but these are a few things that determine whether or not I accept a brand collab.
If my experience while looking through their page and website is so so, what do you think my followers are going to think? On the flip side if you REALLY want to collab with a brand, it will be up to you to decide if the quality is enough or at the level you have in mind for your brand.
Pay Rate Doesn’t Match Work / Time Required
If a brand reaches out to you and is asking for all of this work, but isn’t willing to pay your pay rate and/or what they are requiring takes too much time for you to execute, you might as well say no. Not all brands are up on game when it comes to pay rate and/or the work that goes into being a content creator and some brands are.
Some brands know that influencers aren’t doing their due diligence because of excitement so they know they can swindle a few of them into producing all of this work for free or the rights to their content so make sure you are paying attention. Even some influencer platforms, the brands want 7+ photos, but don’t want to pay. It’s not always worth it in the end. Don’t run yourself low for a brand that doesn’t care about you. I’ve created a Brand Collaboration Detail Sheet with a checklist so you can keep up with your collabs and the important information you need to remember in order to complete the collabs. Get the freebies below!
What are some reasons you have said no to a brand? Drop some of them in the comments.