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FTC issues guidelines for influencers on proper manner of ad disclosure



Social Media Influencers

Time and again, we have seen that the trends of doing business keep on changing. Back in the day, there was the concept of earning money only by doing a 9-hour job sitting at the desk or working outdoors. However, times changed since then as people started to work from home and get work done too. Now, it is the time of freelancing where people don’t have a regular job and take up projects on their free will. Also, a new job category has been created in the social media age known as social media influencing.

Basically, the people doing this job are called social media influencers. The social media influencers have to promote products, do photoshoots, post various photos and promote the brand to get paid. For this job, more the number of followers you have on Twitter and Instagram the better. Therefore, people also work out ways on increasing followers on different platforms. However, we mentioned that they work with brands to promote products which are basically advertisements. But the influencers fail to disclose that it is an ad which generally has lot of positive things to say. Thus, it is made mandatory by US’ FTC to disclose ads even for social media influencers.

Also, FTC has published guidelines on the best way for ad disclosure which does not mislead people. Out of the document, the most important part of advice is as follows by the FTC:

“You can’t talk about your experience with a product you haven’t tried.

  • If you’re paid to talk about a product and thought it was terrible, you can’t say it’s terrific.

  • You can’t make up claims about a product that would require proof the advertiser doesn’t have – such as scientific proof that a product can treat a health condition.”

FTC also says that influencers should not use terms such as “ambassador” and “thanks” and should disclose ads such that they are “hard to miss”

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