Declining A Brand Collaboration? Be Polite.

DYT — Do Your Thng
3 min readApr 28, 2022

I am sure many of you’ve wondered at some point or the other how do people make money on Twitter or Instagram or Facebook?

The answer is simple as well as complex. Creators earn mostly from brand collaborations.

What are brand collaborations?

It’s an agreement between the creator and brand. Wherein the creator endorses a brand’s product or service in exchange for benefits, which can be monetary or non-monetary.

Monetary entails a payment to the creator; non-monetary includes sending you the product or service as a gift. At times, non-monetary benefits can also be as simple as a promise of increased visibility.

More is always better with collaborations because they are a creator’s bread and butter. But, as you well know, there are times when you’re not extremely keen on taking up one.

When does declining a brand collaboration make sense?

A clash of schedules.

A feeling of undervaluation of your worth.

A lack of synergy between you and the brand’s values.

All of these are moments when a brand collaboration doesn’t make sense, and you should politely decline it.

For instance, a creator who is passionate about body positivity and inclusivity must not endorse a brand that restricts its sizing to suit only certain body types.

How to say no to a brand collaboration?

It’s only natural to want to get out of a situation you’d rather not be in.

While you can’t pull a Taylor and send a swift (got the pun?) email stating, “I would very much like to be excluded from this narrative, one that I have never asked to be a part of.”

You can still decline the brand partnership and yet remain in the brand’s good books. Here’s how you do it:

Never fails to send a response

The most basic and simple rule is to respond to a brand when it reaches out for a collaboration. You may feel there is little need for one because the opportunity doesn’t interest you, but it is not the best thing to do.

Responsive communication keeps you from sabotaging your prospects with the brand. So, don’t ignore an outreach attempt. If not just out of courtesy, then do it for your sanity. Chances are. the brand will keep reaching out to you again and again. And no one likes too many emails!

Never be rude

Always maintain composure. If the specifics of the collaboration do not align with your style, tell them you are not a good fit. Don’t send an angry email saying they should have taken the time to go through your profile to understand the tone and voice of your content.

Remember that, as a creator on a public platform, you have a certain image to uphold, and being polite takes you a long way in your creative journey. Rejecting a brand rudely for something they cannot promise at the time will keep you from bigger opportunities later.

Never hesitate to negotiate

We always say, do not shy away from negotiating. When creators use our app for brand collabs, we give both the brand and the creator the option to negotiate the price.

An open and upfront communication with the brand regarding your and their expectations proves you’re a professional. They will realise that you know your worth, take you more seriously, and likely land on a reward that’s in your favour.

Our final advice? Negotiations are particularly crucial if the content the brand wants will take more time or resources than usual.

Always tell them your reasons

Want to build a long-term brand relationship where you get repeated collabs? Then it is imperative, to be honest, and transparent about your reasons for declining.

You don’t need to go into the details of a situation. Brief reasoning goes a long way in maintaining your reputation and helping brands to approach you with the right kind of opportunities next time.

How do you decline collabs?

Peeps, we want to hear from you! Tell us if you’ve ever declined a brand (hard as it may be when you’re starting as a creator)? And if you have, how did you do it?



DYT — Do Your Thng

Do Your Thng (DYT) is a creator community platform with an overarching vision to democratise influence and build a thriving creator community.