Blogging | What Happens When Collabs Don't Happen?

I instantly feel like this is a really touchy subject to talk about. I hope that no brand, blogger or reader reading this sees this as a rant or a moan, which is what I'm worried it looks like. I simply want to talk and maybe discuss the matter. It is more my train of thought and wonders into what happens when brand-blogger collaborations doesn't happen for no fault of the blogger. And it's simply because bloggers reputations and relationships with brands are important to uphold, so what happens when a brand doesn't keep their end of the pending collaboration? That's what I want to talk about today.
Disclaimer: No brands are mentioned nor suggested in this post.
The Situation
I am not the only blogger to ever be in this situation. A brand has contacted you, or you have contacted them regarding a collaboration, sponsored post or something of the sort. You're excited, you and the brand have been emailing but then either ever so slowly or abruptly, the emailing stops. And you don't know where you stand or what's happening? You're left asking yourself questions and retracing emails. Did I say something wrong? Did they decide my blog wasn't right for it? Did they not like me?
When it happens, I wonder if it isn't us and that we're just being paranoid because we care. I know that a lot of us bloggers are kind enough to reply to a brand when it doesn't suit us rather than ignoring it completely. A lot of us bloggers have a specific time frame we ensure we reply to a brand by. And a lot of us will make sure we are honest and professional at all times.
In this situation, many of us would email them back a few days/weeks later asking about it ever so politely. I can say I have felt extremely rude and demanding at times, but a collaboration has been agreed and I intend on following it through for both our benefits. And in this situation, we want to know why this has happened. Have you ever been explained why a collaboration can't go through? Only once for me. And I can say it was probably a good four years ago now.
What If A Blogger Doesn't Reply?
This part is just my theory. I don't know much about the brand side of things but I can imagine, so I apologise sincerely if I am wrong about anything and please correct me!
If we as bloggers just stopped emailing a brand, I'm sure the brand would of course do a follow up just like we would. But at that point from not replying either for a long time or ever, we can assume that our reputation with that brand would be tainted for either a really long time or for good. I don't know any blogger who would do that, but I know for sure that we would worry if we left a Monday email until Wednesday or Thursday. It gives me heart palpitations thinking what in the world brands would think if a Monday email was replied to on Friday or the weekend. Gosh. Especially as I'm having trouble replying to my emails at the moment being swamped with life.
We as bloggers like to uphold our end of the collaboration deal, or simply reply to emails without fail. We like to ensure our reputation working with brands is as best as it can be. Most brands work through PR agencies and all sorts so we would instantly know that other sister brands or related companies would know about us and any negative relationships or lack of professionalism.
We have a reputation to uphold, and it's mind-blowingly important to us to ensure we have the most amazing and best possible relationships with all the brands we've ever worked with.

So What If A Brand Doesn't Reply?
I can tell you now, it's highly upsetting. It doesn't feel good at all. It's also quite annoying. It's annoying because you know if you did that to a brand, your relationship would be tainted. It's annoying because you're left in the lurch and it's a waiting game until you decide to give up. And lastly, if you're like me you can't help but feel guilty for feeling like this.
Now, I don't have any recommendations of time scales but I usually leave it to about one/two weeks depending on the time between emails to email them back. And when I do I email politely asking for a follow up on the process of the collaboration and usually just reminding them that I am interested and I hope they're still interested in working with me too. That's just me though.
But what happens to a brands reputation in this situation? Is it ever tainted? In my opinion: I don't think so. Because as bloggers our community is so visibly and accessible on many forms of social media. Not only would we be calling out brands on their networking skills and relationships with bloggers but it would taint our own relationship with the brands too. It would be so embarrassing and horrible to see that. As bloggers everything is so public so we're always very careful about what we say because it's either out there or it isn't. And in this situation, we're respectful enough to ensure it isn't.
I've had situations where I've got right down to the finalisation and that final email never came. I've been in the situation where emails have abruptly stopped and even down to waiting for products being reviewed to arrive.
But again, only once have I ever been explained why an opportunity has been made unavailable to me before. I cannot tell you how much I appreciated that email - it left me feeling good about the situation, understanding and also thought about. I can't remember the details, but I remember definitely how it felt.

So What Do We Want To See Happen Next?
Well, I want to see brands think about this a little bit more. I want to see brands and companies emailing us not apologies as such, but if an opportunity to collaborate isn't available anymore - a simple email telling us it's not there. If you can't say why, don't say it but please tell us rather than leaving us waiting and hoping. If you can tell us why, tell us! Please be honest - it will help us grow as bloggers. I myself, simply want to know if it's gone and a reason why. Nothing more, nothing less. It's respectful, thoughtful, kind and it actually builds a happy and positive relationship between blogger and brand.

If you're a blogger I'd love to know what you think about this and if it's ever happened to you. Please begin discussions and talk in the comments below because I might not always reply, but I do always, always read them. And this is one I'm really interested in hearing thoughts back from! There is a lot I haven't covered but I don't want to go to into it.

If you're a brand, I hope you understand my urge to write this post and what we as bloggers might like to see change in brand-blogger relationships. It's actually only something small and doesn't  apply to many brands at all only happens on the not very often part of the scale, but when it does happen it is a bother and can be quite difficult to deal with. I hope you don't see this as a bad thing and find some interest in reading this post from a blogger's perspective.


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