In the world of PR, working with influencers is a key part of many social media strategies. Most of us understand the value of doing so and how powerful these collaborations can be when it comes to reaching target audiences.
What has become more apparent recently though is the lack of disclosure within the industry and the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is clamping down.
It’s transpired that many famous faces (who shall remain nameless) have been posting images online featuring products that they’ve been paid to advertise yet are failing to disclose this essential nugget of information to their followers.
Why does it matter, you may ask? Well, alongside being unethical and deliberately misleading, it’s actually illegal. Failure to comply with the rules could lead to two-year prison sentence and an unlimited fine.
As a brand/business, you are also responsible for ensuring that these rules are met by any influencers you choose to work with. And let’s not forget about your reputation here… #PRcrisis
The Committees of Adverting Practices (CAP) guidelines ask advertisers and creators to warn consumers that content is paid for before they engage with it, so clarity really is key.
Best practice for influencers is to use #ad when sharing images and sponsored content on their social media platforms. However, a number of influencers use #sp or #spon which is a little less clear to Joe Public, therefore, often advised against.
Viva recommends setting clear, concise requirements when working with influencers, ensuring that they understand and agree to comply with CAP/ASA/CMA rules before any collaboration work begins and that brands regularly monitor the content published.
If you need advice or are considering influencer outreach for your business, get in touch today.
Lisa Valentine | Social Media Executive