Social media influencers need to make full disclosure for anything of value they’ve received. This includes any gifts or “PR” from the brands they publicly endorse.
In a much needed clarification of their policies, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) released a new document. These guidelines are for the behavior of all those who benefit from advertising or endorsing any product or brand.
The new guide, “Disclosures 101 for Social Media Influencers,” provides influencers with tips from FTC staff. It covers what triggers the need for a disclosure and offers examples of both effective and ineffective disclosures.
The guide and accompanying videos underscore that the responsibility to make disclosures about endorsements lies with the influencer. The guide outlines the various ways that an influencer’s relationship with a brand would make disclosures necessary, and it reminds influencers that they cannot assume that followers are aware of their connections to brands.
One influencer, Jen Luvs Reviews made an informative video going through the guidelines. Click here to view that video.
Because we in the beauty industry are often approached by influencers requesting products or services in exchange for exposure, we need to carefully qualify these offers. Be sure the exposure they offer benefits you and your brand since an influencer with a smaller following of locals might really benefit your business. If you do decide to work with an influencer, give them all the information they will need about you and your business/brand to make full disclosure on their posts. Don’t make them ask you for information–have all the details written out the way you want them communicated.