Monday, October 4, 2021

I was Taken Advantage by a Brand, Threatened to be Sued and Here is What Happened

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Here is a bit of background information: I have been blogging for six years. I have worked with close to 150 brands over that time frame. I have read and negotiated many contracts. Over the years I have become a better negotiator. I try to make sure I get what I want: product and payment. I always make sure the contract lists the deliverables clearly. I have also learned to say no to many brands if I am genuinely not excited about the brand or if I don’t like the product. I am also in my second year of law school hoping to be a transactional attorney.

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Here’s the story: I did a giveaway earlier this year with a company, who won’t be named, (and who are not pictured) and they took advantage of me and my followers.

I read and signed a contract that would give me product and payment for posting two static Instagram photos, one of the posts which would be for a giveaway to one of my followers.

We had a timeline of when the product would be shipped and when I would send in the drafts of the content and when they would go live once approved.

I shot the campaign, sent in the photos for the first post, all was well.

For the second post, which would be a giveaway post, I asked my contact at the brand if I could post it a little later than we had originally said in the contract because of school or something, I needed more time.

It was approved. I asked if I could have a new updated contract with the new date. The contact told me I didn’t need it, but I insisted I should have an updated contract just in case.

We then discussed via email what the requirements would be for my followers to enter the giveaway. We negotiated back and forth, and we settled on one of my suggestions.

I posted the giveaway; it goes off without a hitch. It is open for a set period of time and then it closes, I picked a winner and told the brand.

The brand contacted the winner via Instagram and told her to pick out her product and the size and to send her address.

The brand told me and her that the product was shipped.

The brand never sent the giveaway prize.


I asked the brand a couple of weeks later where the prize was. They told me that they sent it and that obviously it got lost in the mail and they would send another one.

This went on for some time: back and forth, I was being told that the product was shipped, the mail carrier lost it and that they were sending new ones. Supposedly they had sent three boxes… all lost.


So, I eventually started to not believe the brand anymore. I started to push them a bit more. I asked to see the tracking number. No response. After weeks and weeks, still going back and forth, I was fed up and told them they were in breach of contract if they did not send the giveaway.

When I said that, I was threatened with a lawsuit from the brand.


Little did they know who they were dealing with. And little did they know that I had just taken contracts in school and was training to be an attorney.

I responded that I would be happy to speak with their attorney.

The attorney never got in touch. Do you know why? Because I was right! They had no claim for a lawsuit. They were in the wrong, not me. What would they sue me for? I didn’t do anything wrong.

They were in breach of contract. I knew I was right, but I needed reassurance, so I emailed my contracts professor and told her everything, and she reassured me that I was right.


Lessons we learn from this as a content creator:

1. Make sure you have a written contract that is signed and dated by both parties

2.          Don’t be afraid to ask for a second opinion

3.          Don’t be afraid to fight for what you were promised for


This happens way more often than we think, and we really need to speak up and stop letting brands take advantage of us! We are worth SO much more than brands value us for. So, as Louise says, KNOW YOUR WORTH!


I hope this post sheds light on a bad situation in the blogger world, and you take something from it. 


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