In February 2020, the Federal Trade Commission’s Rohit Chopra issued a public statement sounding an alarm about fake social media accounts, fake likes, fake followers, and fake reviews and proclaiming that “bold steps” are needed “to safeguard our digital economy from lies, distortions, and disinformation.” The revised web endorsement policy of the Federal Trade Commission had consumer groups clapping their hands in agreement, but web advertisers and bloggers alike don’t like it one bit. / Synergixx, LLC, National Floors Direct, Inc., In the Matter of, Staffordshire Property Management, LLC, In the Matter of, Shore to Please Vacations LLC, In the Matter of, Jason Cardiff (Redwood Scientific Technologies, Inc.), FTC Approves Final Consent Agreement with Sunday Riley Modern Skincare, LLC, FTC Seeks to Add Real Estate Investment Celebrities Dean Graziosi and Scott Yancey as Defendants in Real Estate Training Case, FTC Sends Report to Congress on Social Media Bots and Deceptive Advertising, FTC Halts Bogus Claims about “Miracle” Supplement for Older Adults, FTC Extends Comment Deadline for Endorsement Guides Review to June 22, Tea Marketer Misled Consumers, Didn’t Adequately Disclose Payments to Well-Known Influencers, FTC Alleges, FTC Refunding Consumers Defrauded by Cognitive Improvement Claims, FTC Seeks Public Comment on its Endorsement Guides, FTC Sending Refund Checks to Consumers Allegedly Misled by “Free” Trial Offers for UrthBox Snack Boxes, FTC Releases Advertising Disclosures Guidance for Online Influencers, Devumi, Owner and CEO Settle FTC Charges They Sold Fake Indicators of Social Media Influence; Cosmetics Firm Sunday Riley, CEO Settle FTC Charges That Employees Posted Fake Online Reviews at CEO’s Direction, FTC Approves Final Consent Orders with Five Companies that Allegedly Violated the Consumer Review Fairness Act, FTC and FDA Send Warning Letters to Companies Selling Flavored E-liquids About Social Media Endorsements without Health Warnings, FTC Announces Two Actions Enforcing the Consumer Review Fairness Act, FTC Approves Final Consent Order against UrthBox, Inc. and its Principal Related to Compensated Online Reviews and “Free” Trial Offer, FTC Announces First Actions Exclusively Enforcing the Consumer Review Fairness Act, Geniux Dietary Supplement Sellers Barred from Unsupported Cognitive Improvement Claims, FTC Brings First Case Challenging Fake Paid Reviews on an Independent Retail Website, FTC Approves Final Consent Orders Settling Endorsement and Deceptive Native Advertising Charges against Creaxion Corporation and Inside Publications, LLC, PR Firm and Publisher Settle FTC Allegations They Misrepresented Product Endorsements as Independent Opinions, Commercial Advertising as Editorial Content, FTC says flight service winged it by leaving data unprotected in the cloud, Green lights, red flags, blue lobster: FTC Rules of the Road for Business heads to Cleveland, Green Lights & Red Flags: FTC Rules of the Road for Business rocks on in Cleveland, Online Trading Academy settles charges it made deceptive money-making claims and tried to gag consumers, Lights out on unsubstantiated pain relief claims and deceptive native advertising, FTC-SBA warning letters caution against misleading loan program claims, No pain (relief), no gain? “ The FTC’s Endorsement Guides provide that if there is a ‘material connection’ between an endorser and an advertiser – in other words, a connection that might affect the weight or credibility that consumers give the endorsement – that connection should be clearly and conspicuously disclosed, unless it … In 2019, several e-cigarette companies ran afoul of the FTC when paid influencers pitched their vaping products on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube. Endorsements are an important tool for advertisers and they can be persuasive to consumers. The sponsoring brand may also be tagged when applicable. 9 Wake Forest L. Rev. The FTC’s Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising are guidelines designed to help advertisers of all stripes – TV, print, radio, blogs, word-of-mouth marketing – make sure that they meet this standard. The following are some of the FTC’s recommendations for sponsorships on: While knowing platform-specific FTC endorsement guidelines can be helpful, the FTC is more concerned about the types of disclosure and less with how each disclosure appears on any given social media platform. They were revised in 2009 and again, most recently, in 2015. When the FTC first introduced regulations for bloggers and influencers, each publication written about a product or company had to feature the hashtags #spon or #ad. But the law says they also have to be truthful and not misleading. CMWorld 2019 experts offer tips on creating with empathy, pitching martech purchases and helping sales; FTC Endorsement Guidelines: Social Media Dos and Don’ts. To that end, the FTC wants to create more transparency in sponsored content by placing more onus on brands and influencers to openly divulge the relationship between companies and the influencers recommending their products or services. Which Is Best For Influencer Marketing. In a world where social media influencers can wield more power over consumers than network media buys, the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) Endorsement Guides felt increasingly like a relic from an earlier era. Advertisers should consider its placement in the ad and its proximity to the relevant claim. On November 5, 2019, the United States Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) issued a guide entitled “Disclosures 101 for Social Media Influencers” and a video “Do you endorse things on social media?” to alert influencers to the laws governing endorsement or recommendation of products or services and provide social media influencers with “tips on when and how to make good disclosures.” Share 1. Click here to learn more. § 45(l). November 4, 2019. Don’t disclose sponsorship in the comments or attempt to bury disclosure among other hashtags. Click the button to get in touch. I got an email from the FTC (I’m Canadian, living, working in Canada, website registered in Canada) that I was not in compliance with their disclosure policy for blogs and affiliates. Written disclosures must also be visible, appear in a different color than the background color, occur at the top/beginning of sponsored social media content, and remain on the screen long enough to be read and understood (for written disclosures in videos). ... Cor June 24, 2019 at 8:55 pm - Reply. Hyperlinks leading to disclosure should be consistent in style and placed with the right label. Sponsored tweets must include #ad or #paid, preferably near the beginning of the tweet. 15 U.S.C. Special Focus July 7, 2020 July 7, 2020 B2BNN Newsdesk. Employers, Employees, Endorsements and the Federal Trade Commission. Advertisers shouldn’t encourage endorsements using features that don’t allow for clear and conspicuous disclosures.”).. The FTC guidelines are clear: The buck stops with the advertiser when it comes to the disclosure of endorsements. not require the user to scroll to see the sponsorship information. as a clear and written overlay on the video. Let's collaborate on influencer marketing and social media stories. The FTC’s endorsement guidelines, through the FTC Act, apply to social media influencers. Now, the FTC came up with a new format that targets influencers specifically: Disclosures 101 for Social Media Influencers. The FTC guidelines are clear: The buck stops with the advertiser when it comes to the disclosure of endorsements. Avoid using ambiguous phrases like “thanks to…”, attempting to hide written disclosures at the bottom of the video description, or failing to include written and verbal disclosure within the video itself. directly on sponsored content. The FTC guidelines are publically available in the FTC Endorsement Guides at the US Government Publishing Office website. Want to work with us on your next campaign? When using the paid promotion tool, include additional proper disclosure. Use hashtags #sponsored, #ad, #paid to indicate sponsorship, but avoid using ambiguous hashtag disclosures like #sp, #spon. Charli D’Amelio vs. Addison Rae: Who’s The Most Famous TikToker? Mobile Apps. Social influencers/brands should use #sponsored, #ad, #paid. Written disclosures must employ clear wording, such as “This post is sponsored by…”. The guide includes pointers on when a disclosure is necessary and examples of both effective and ineffective types of disclosures. The FTC is seeking input from stakeholders on revisions to the FTC guidelines. The advertiser is responsible for ensuring that any agencies or influencers they work with on social media marketing campaigns know and correctly practice the rules of disclosure. Simply stated, endorsements must not be misleading and reflect the honest opinion of the endorser. These guidelines have been around since the eighties. Individual influencers would be liable for this penalty but also suffer greater reputational harm. FTC Revised Online Endorsement Guidelines – Part Two What Doctors and Medical Practices Can and Can’t Do According to the New FTC Endorsement Guidelines – Part Two If you push the boundaries to get more online business, you may be looking at a complaint from the Federal Trade Commission. However, this is a good opportunity for businesses to evaluate their current marketing practices, especially if they utilize social media platforms and influencer endorsements. Following the FTC’s rules keeps you on the right side of the law. The FTC’s Endorsement Guidelines state that if there is a “material connection” between an endorser and an advertiser (i.e., a connection that might affect the weight or credibility that a customer would give the endorsement), then that connection must be clearly and conspicuously disclosed. FTC challenges claims aimed at older consumers, Public comment periods for Funeral Rule and Endorsement Guides extended, FTC takes on unproven health claims and “own-dorsements”, FTC’s Teami case: Spilling the tea about influencers and advertisers, FTC challenges Online Trading Academy’s money-making claims, Endorsement Guides: The FTC wants your feedback, FTC alleges deception in “unbiased” review site’s ratings and rankings, Consumer reviews: The FCRA upshot of fighting ire with fire, FTC consumer protection year in review offers 2020 vision for your business, Joint venture? With the evolution of influencer marketing and growing confusion over the FTC guidelines, incongruities between brands and influencers often emerge. And a growing number of brands have become interested in collaborating with social media influencers. Pass along your details so we can collaborate for future campaigns. The FTC’s endorsement guides establish guidelines for advertisers. Coinciding with the FTC’s latest warnings, the commission has updated the FAQ-style explainer of its endorsement guidelines. While brand owners often benefit from the endorsement of online and social media “influencers,” such endorsements must not mislead consumers as to the relationship between the brand and individual endorsing the brand’s products or services. 08 Apr 2019. The new 2019 FTC endorsement guidelines shift focus onto influencers and their responsibility to understand FTC disclosure guidelines when partnering with brands, underscoring three key components of proper endorsement practices: Based on our experience developing sponsored social media content for global brands, we’ve identified what we believe to be the most important FTC endorsement rules below. § 45. Instagram’s built-in paid partnership tag is not considered sufficient disclosure by the FTC. FTC cases challenge bogus influencer metrics and fake reviews, Green Lights & Red Flags: FTC Rules of the Road for Business, In Short: Advertising & Privacy Disclosures in a Digital World, Majority Statement of Chairman Joseph J. Simons and Commissioners Noah Joshua Phillips and Christine S. Wilson Regarding Final Approval of the Sunday Riley Settlement, Statement of the Commission in the Matter of Teami, LLC, Keynote of Commissioner Noah Joshua Phillips at ANA/BAA Marketing Law Conference - The FTC and the Digital Marketplace: Highlights from the Last Year, Statement of Commissioner Chopra Joined by Commissioner Slaughter Regarding Sunday Riley, Alo, LLC d/b/a Alo Yoga (endorsement claims), Commission Enforcement Policy Statement on Deceptively Formatted Advertisements, Better Business Bureau’s National Advertising Division Annual Conference Keynote Address, Remarks at the Association of National Advertisers’ Advertising Law & Public Policy Conference, Statement of Chairwoman Edith Ramirez, Commissioner Julie Brill, and Commissioner Terrell McSweeny - Federal Trade Commission v. Genesis Today, Inc., Pure Health LLC, and Lindsey Duncan, Keynote Address of Chairwoman Edith Ramirez, A Type of Amplified Word of Mouth Marketing, FTC Policy Statement Regarding Advertising Substantiation, Commission Enforcement Policy Statement Regarding Clear and Conspicuous Disclosures in Television Advertising, Statement in Regard to Advertisements That Appear in Feature Article Format, Blurred Lines: An Exploration of Consumers’ Advertising Recognition in the Contexts of Search Engines and Native Advertising: A Federal Trade Commission Staff Report, Effects of Consumer Testimonials in Weight Loss, Dietary Supplement and Business Opportunity Advertisements (the Second Endorsement Study), The Effect of Consumer Testimonials and Disclosures of Ad Communication for a Dietary Supplement (The Endorsement Booklet Study), Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising, Divulgaciones 101 para influenciadores de los medios sociales, The FTC’s Endorsement Guides: What People Are Asking, Consumer Review Fairness Act: What Businesses Need to Know, Native Advertising: A Guide for Businesses. When using ambiguous disclosures, include additional proper disclosure. Related Videos. The FTC new endorsement guidelines apply to a broad range of electronic advertising Medical providers and medical companies can be forced to suspend their electronic advertising, pay fines and penalties, and lose money if their advertising is misleading or deceptive The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has focused its attention on social media influencers. Sponsored Snaps or Snapchat Stories must have #ad, #sponsored, or #paid written directly on sponsored content. Nonetheless, Canada’s advertising standards will likely be updated in 2017 to require something similar to the FTC’s Endorsement Guides. The FTC guidelines are publically available in the FTC Endorsement Guides at the US Government Publishing Office website. The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has released a new guide ‘Disclosures 101 for Social Media Influencers‘ which aims to inform influencers on how and when they should disclose their partnerships with brands to their followers to comply with the law. When most people think of social media influencers, world-famous celebrities, athletes, and models might jump to mind. Required disclosures must be clear and conspicuous. Influencers and brands should reference FTC influencer guidelines directly at FTC.gov for more information and can contact [email protected] to ask any questions about FTC disclosures.. Update: The FTC updated their FTC influencer guidelines about disclosures in November 2019. Avoid using phrases or hashtags that are unclear or ambiguous, such as #sp, #spon. Influencer FTC Guidelines IZEA July 24, 2019 Influencer endorsements on social media have dramatically changed the world of native advertising over the past decade. “Thanks to…” or “Video made possible by…”. Specifically, the Guides address the application of Section 5 of the FTC Act (15 U.S.C. Display disclosures before consumers make a decision to buy, before the CTA. If an entire Snapchat Story is sponsored, the disclosure should appear on the first Snap of the Story. Here are the FTC’s recommendations for: Whether a brand or influencer, it is your responsibility to know the FTC endorsement guidelines and to comply with them when creating sponsored content. The FTC has responded with efforts to clarify its endorsement and disclosure guidelines, all in the name of protecting consumers. Otherwise, the company will risk civil penalties or even a contempt charge in federal court. Proper disclosure must be provided each time a previously sponsored product or service is included in a post. The guide includes pointers on when a disclosure is necessary and examples of both effective and ineffective types of disclosures. Disclose sponsorship at the beginning of the post description using #sponsored, #ad, or #paid (if disclosing sponsorship with hashtags) and by tagging the brand whenever possible. FTC DOT COM ONLINE ADVERTISING DISCLOSURE GUIDELINES The Federal Trade Commission enforces consumer protection laws to ensure that products and services are described truthfully online, free of deception and unfair practices as prohibited by the FCT Act. Disclosures should not appear as written phrases that are unclear, such as “Thanks to…” or “Made possible by…”. The FTC has also stepped-up its own investigations into deceptive online endorsements. Additionally, endorsements cannot be used to make an unsubstantiated claim that the product’s marketer could not make. There has been a tremendous increase in the popularity of social media influencers among brands. The FTC works to stop deceptive ads, and its Endorsement Guides go into detail about how advertisers and endorsers can stay on the right side of the law.. or any other hashtag that doesn’t clearly convey nature of sponsored content. Do not place hashtags at the end of the description, require users to click “more” to see the disclosure, include disclosure in the comments section only, or hide disclosure among many other hashtags. Yes, an endorsement can be aspirational. Office of Equal Employment Opportunity and Workplace Inclusion, Reporting Fraud, Waste, Abuse or Mismanagement, What You Need to Know About the Office of the Inspector General, Companies and People Banned From Debt Relief, Statute, Rules and Formal Interpretations, Post-Consummation Filings (HSR Violations), Retrospective Review of FTC Rules and Guides, Other Applications, Petitions, and Requests, Magnuson-Moss Warranty Public Audit Filings, International Technical Assistance Program, Competition & Consumer Protection Authorities Worldwide, Hearings on Competition & Consumer Protection, List a Number on the National Do Not Call Registry, File Documents in Adjudicative Proceedings, guidelines designed to help advertisers of all stripes, Global Community Innovations LLC, et al. May. But if advertisers don’t follow the guides, the FTC may decide to investigate whether the practices are unfair or deceptive under the FTC Act. Rather, it should be used as a general guideline for making sure that sponsored content meets (to a reasonable degree) the FTC endorsement rules and regulations: As evidenced by the rich history of FTC violations and subsequent guideline updates, the FTC is attempting to clear the air once more to emphasize the importance of proper sponsorship disclosure. FTC guidelines state that proper disclosure must be provided whenever a social media user is provided with financial compensation, free product, or a gift provided in exchange for a post. Additionally, content creators must disclose when they have a family relationship with a brand. The FTC’s Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising are guidelines designed to help advertisers of all stripes – TV, print, radio, blogs, word-of-mouth marketing – make sure that they meet this standard. How to Comply With FTC Endorsement Guidelines. Do your own research and make sure you continue to look for updates on their policy’s and rules! , and must be accompanied by additional proper disclosure hashtags if used. For Instagram Stories, disclosure should be superimposed on the image. The FTC has repeatedly emphasized that using a platform’s built-in disclosure tools does not offer any guarantee that it is an effective way for influencers to disclose their material connections. The endorsement guidelines publicized by the FTC help bloggers, influencers, brands and agencies understand what is required of them when a company pays someone to promote / endorse their product. In September 2017, the FTC launched its first foray into influencer marketing enforcement. Accompany ambiguous disclosures with additional proper disclosure. The policy behind the FTC Endorsement Guides is to ensure truthful advertising. In April 2017, the FTC reminded influencers and brands that these existing endorsement guidelines apply to them as endorsers and advertisers. The Endorsement Guides also state that if there is a connection between the endorser and the marketer of a product that would affect how people evaluate the endorsement, it should be disclosed. In April 2017, the FTC sent 90 letters to influencers and marketers to educate them on these influencer marketing laws. If an entire Snapchat Story is sponsored, the disclosure should appear on the first or second Snap of the Story. While the FTC endorsement guidelines have always aimed to convey transparency to digital consumers, influencers have either been unaware of best practices, found ways to conceal ads, or ignored the guidelines altogether. That is why the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) created Endorsement Guidelines that explain key influencer marketing guidelines and examples for companies to use. Canada Rolls Out FTC-style Endorsement Guidelines Beginning 2017. According to current FTC guidance, including disclosures solely in the description of the video on TikTok may already be insufficient to comply with the FTC’s endorsement rules. Category: Advertising and Marketing. YouTube’s built-in paid promotion tool is not considered sufficient disclosure by the FTC. On November 5, 2019, the United States Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) issued a guide entitled “Disclosures 101 for Social Media Influencers” and a video “Do you endorse things on social media?” to alert influencers to the laws governing endorsement or recommendation of products or services and provide social media influencers with “tips on when and how to make good disclosures.” In 2018 and 2019, Influencer Marketing Hub estimated that somewhere between 25% and 30% of influencers were … — FTC (@FTC) November 5, 2019 "That's because an endorsement is an advertisement that the influencer is making on the advertiser's behalf," Atleson says. It must be right there with the endorsement … Notably, this new guidance comes more than two years after the FTC began to increase its attention on influencer marketing, as shown by the letters sent to brands, celebrities, and influencers alerting them of disclosure requirements, and ahead of what may be a significant re-visit to the endorsement guidelines themselves in the near future. Hashtags. Is that still an endorsement subject to the FTC’s Endorsement Guides? This article was originally published by Frankfurt Kurnit Klein+Selz.. The endorsement guidelines publicized by the FTC help bloggers, influencers, brands and agencies understand what is required of them when a company pays someone to promote / endorse their product. Disclosing on the homepage does not replace the need to disclose on individual sponsored blog posts. Recent developments demonstrate the FTC’s continued interest in social media endorsements.. First, in an effort to provide additional guidance on its endorsement policies, the FTC again updated its Endorsement Guide (the “Guides”) frequently asked questions (“FAQs”). Disclosure should also be made verbally if. Working with a reputable influencer marketing agency will ensure your influencer campaigns comply with FTC rules. An endorsement must reflect the honest opinion of the endorser and cannot be used to make a claim that the marketer of a product could not legally make. Learn more here. Share 2. YouTubers/brands should use words or phrases that are clear and unambiguous, such as “This video is sponsored by…” and include sponsorship information above the “show more” button. Vyrl is not responsible for use of this information to construct an FTC-compliant disclosure. The FTC announced yesterday that it is looking for feedback on whether to modify its endorsement guidelines, which were enacted in 1980 and haven’t been updated since 2009. [Infographic] See The Updated FTC Endorsement Guidelines here: The Influencer Marketing Industry Global Ad Spend: A $5-$10 Billion Market By 2020 [CHART], INFLUENCER MARKETING 2019 INDUSTRY BENCHMARKS, 8 Brands Doing Coronavirus Influencer Marketing Right on Instagram and TikTok, 10 TikTok Marketing Campaigns: How Brands are Using TikTok Influencers, The Best Influencer Marketing Case Studies: Campaigns From Top Brands, Influencers, & More. What should businesses be doing in response to the FTC's statement? Influencer Marketing Conference & Expo: What Marketers Need To Know About IMCX, In-House vs Agency? The following infographic should not be taken as legal advice. Jewelers Vigilance Committee President Tiffany Stevens said the news about the FTC seeking public comment was an “encouraging sign,” noting it indicates the FTC is prioritizing ensuring its guidelines are keeping up with the market. If you endorse a product through social media, your endorsement message should make it obvious when you have a … Native advertising has been around for a long time—it’s advertising designed to look like editorial or … Also, avoid verbally disclosing the sponsorship at the. The advertiser is responsible for ensuring that any agencies or influencers they work with on social media marketing campaigns know and correctly practice the rules of disclosure. What Travel Bloggers Need To Know About FTC Guidelines via @writetotravel Click To Tweet. The general principles of advertising and marketing law apply online, but new issues arise almost as fast as… Online 66 Nanci K. Carr* With global advertising expenditures on the rise, social media supports an increasing share of all advertising and endorsements and is subject to regulation by the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”). They made it clear that the responsibility about endorsements lies with the influencer. More Videos. The penalty for violating the FTC endorsement guidelines is a monetary fine up to $10,000 for each incident, and any other equitable relief granted by a District Court. Let us create a custom campaign to fit your brand's unique needs. It’s an endorsement if the blogger is explicitly or implicitly expressing his or her views about the sports car (e.g., “I want this car”). The FTC has offered more guidance in the past on what constitutes proper disclosure—the agency even published a simple Q&A to address marketers’ basic concerns—but the ever-changing nature of social media makes establishing a set of clear-cut rules nearly impossible. Acceptable language to meet FTC endorsement guidelines include: Language that does not meet FTC endorsement guidelines includes. Media Resources. It also serves as a critical reminder that the responsibility for compliance with these rules often falls on the influencer – and that sponsors are not the only focus for regulators. Preferably design advertisements so that “scrolling” is not necessary in order to find a disclosure. In addition, the Endorsement Guides let endorsers know that they shouldn’t talk about their experience with a product if they haven’t tried it, or make claims about a product that would require proof they don’t have. Companies engaged in social media marketing can protect themselves by reviewing the FTC’s Endorsement Guides, which provide guidance for marketers and influencers alike. FTC Rules for Influencers – Here are the Key Takeaways for Brands 08 Apr 2019 There has been a tremendous increase in the popularity of social media influencers among brands.