Not everyone is going to shoot it to you straight but here at Sidewalker Daily our motto is that the best partnerships are a win-win for everyone involved. Since brands normally have the negotiating power (aka dollars and cents) they sometimes get a little carried away. We never want you to get involved in a shady partnership deal so we’re covering how brands take advantage of bloggers, influencers and content creators so you know what to look out for during the pitching and negotiation process.
This is definitely not the easiest subject to cover since depending on the partnership deal going down you can find us on either side of the equation – sometimes we’re representing brands and other times we’re helping influencers negotiate from behind the scenes.
So what that means for you is we’ve seen it all and know what a good deal looks like and also what a “you should run now” deal looks like.
The bottom line is brands are run by humans and we know this isn’t a perfect world so there are sometimes good humans and there are sometimes shady humans. It may be difficult to always get a read on everyone you’re working with, especially if you’re negotiating with a brand rep from behind the screen.
Don’t get us wrong, there are SO MANY visionaries in this space that are fighting tooth and nail to make sure creators get compensated fairly and brands do them right. But for the purposes of this article we’re talking about all the shady stuff that goes on so you’ll know what to look out for when you’re navigating the influencer partnership world.
But First…Why Brands Take Advantage Of Travel Bloggers
Before we get into how brands take advantage of bloggers, let’s go over why this even happens in the first place. Yes, sometimes brands can take advantage of their relationships with bloggers intentionally because they are trying to get the most bang for their buck but often times brands are just clueless as to how to even work with influencers and what is expected from them (especially if they don’t have a ton of experience with influencer marketing).
Since some brands are still learning how NOT to work with bloggers, what works and what doesn’t – it’s ok to cut them some slack since the industry is still constantly evolving and there is a steep learning curve.
So if some of the red flags we cover pop up, make sure you don’t jump the gun because you don’t know if what they are doing is intentional or is just a honest mistake.
How Brands Take Advantage Of Bloggers – 9 Red Flags To Look Out For.
It’s important to understand that red flags don’t always mean RUN. But when red flags do pop up when you’re pitching to brands, they give you some insight into what you’re dealing with and how to best approach the situation.
So just because one of these situations arises during the partnership process it doesn’t mean you need to automatically say no to the brand partnership. But what you do need to do is step back and evaluate whether it’s a good idea for you to move forward or just to pass altogether.
So let’s dive in and go over how brands take advantage of bloggers and influencers:
1. They Tell You What To Do Or Say
As soon as a brand tries to restrict your creative freedom, tells you what to post or what to say in the caption, you should probably think twice about working with them. This happens ALL THE TIME where big global brands are trying to force messaging down your followers throats but a lot of time they just don’t get it.