Should Bloggers Pay Shipping in Brand Collaborations?

PAYING TO WORK WITH BRANDS?

One of the perks to working with brands besides extra income and free products is the ability to add something professional to your resume. Brand collaborations set you apart from others in your field. Partnering with a brand says that the company believes you represent everything they stand for, they find your opinion positively influential and beneficial to their overall stance.

Brands that find you valuable want your honest input about their products and/or services because in the long-run it helps them deliver messages to a potential new audience through you. It’s a pretty remarkable way of communicating, marketing, advertising, networking and building professional connections from the blogger’s end and the company’s perspective. However, starting out as new blogger may have you flustered in differentiating between the legit and scam offers, which is quite difficult to tell especially if it’s coming from a new company.


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I remember receiving my first brand partnership as a blogger and I had no clue what the parameters were in terms of collaborations. I didn’t know the do’s and don’ts for accepting offers, especially when it came to gifted items. One too many times I was the VICTIM of paying shipping for a product that was NEVER sent to me. I had to learn the hard way in filtering out which offers were legit. One questionable area for me was, “Is it really professional for me as a blogger to pay shipping fees in brand collaborations?”

Do I Pay Shipping for a Product in Brand Collaborations?

The answer is no. Why? Let me tell you, YOU DO NOT NEED TO PAY SHIPPING FEES FOR BRAND COLLABORATIONS! In fact, YOU SHOULD NEVER PAY SHIPPING FEES FOR BRAND COLLABORATIONS. Anytime a company or brand asks you to pay any type of fee, it’s a scam. Do not do it. Some businesses will tell you that the fee is to secure the package in its post office journey towards you. Some will say the fee is simply for them in case you don’t deliver the promotion on your end. I wouldn’t doubt there are people who take free products without giving the promised review on their platform. However, companies shouldn’t require you to pay for anything, regardless if they think the collaboration won’t happen. 

My thing is, if a business thinks there’s a chance the blogger won’t deliver results, don’t ask them to collaborate. What’s the point? All the company ends of doing is taking money from the blogger. Half the time, brands that ask for shipping fees in collaborations are actually requiring you to pay the true value of the product they’re “attempting” to send to you.

On one occasion, I had a company offer me a collaboration of elaborate earrings. The website looked legit, easy to navigate, modern, minimalistic and aesthetically pleasing. But when it came to the partnership details, the earrings they wanted to send me cost $125 dollars yet the shipping fee was $10.99. Now that doesn’t sound like a lot of money to pay but after further research I realized it was a scam. I actually found the same pair of earrings they wanted to “give” me on another website under a different name yet it had the same advertising photo. TOTAL SCAM! 

Am I Supposed to Pay a Shipping Fee for Products in Brand Collaborations?
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Why I Will NEVER Pay Shipping Fees in Brand Collabs?

I needed to change the mindset in how brand sponsorships worked. Instead of taking every offer that crossed my path just because I was simply excited to work with a professional company, I started valuing my skills and personal brand better. I figured if a company wants me to invest time into promoting and featuring their products or services, they need to invest in me. If I’m asked to work for them by creating blog posts and use my social media as an advertising outlet, I shouldn’t have to pay any extra fees in order to receive a product they want me to promote.

Think about it, you don’t pay a job any kind of money that hired you to work. 

You don’t pay to work, you work to get paid. Not that everything is about money but you get my point. Why would you pay a company any kind of fee for you to do work for them? Essentially you become a freelance employee in brand partnerships and you shouldn’t have to pay for anything in order to work for companies. Once I changed my perspective on who is supposed to pay who, it was easy to filter out the scam offers. 

Think about it, advertising companies don’t charge their employees a fee to promote special items that they asked them to advertise. The company just gives them the products.

As bloggers, brands are to roll out the red carpet for you in collaborations. They should provide everything you need in order to create a valuable promotion, otherwise it’s like you’re paying for the product itself through shipping fees and giving the company free advertisement. 

Am I Supposed to Pay a Shipping Fee for Products in Brand Collaborations?
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What do you think about paying a shipping fee in brand collaborations? Should bloggers and content creators pay any type of fee to work with brands?

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