The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has established a set of relatively strict rules that relate to disclosing the financial relationship between an influencer and a brand. In short, if you decide to work with a marketer to produce any type of sponsored content or sponsored social posts, skipping disclosure isn’t an option.
This site is designed to provide you with the tools and information you need to provide transparency to your audience about the content on your blog or social media posts. By including a Disclosure Policy and adopting the FTC Standard for endorsements in social media you are helping to protect the integrity of your brand and providing a service to the marketers, sponsors and organizations that support you. Disclosure encourages trust amongst your readers and promotes an ethical social web.
If there is any form of compensation provided by the marketer it must be disclosed.
Yep, that includes free stuff.
Examples of Sponsored Content That Requires Disclosure
Product reviews might be the most straightforward form of sponsored content. A brand sends an influencer a product (or asks them to purchase it), whether it is a piece of clothing, a book, a video game, or makeup, and the influencer tries it out and reviews it.
Sponsored posts or content featuring product placement aren’t the same as a review. In this case, the product simply needs to be mentioned or pictured in the post for it to count as sponsorship. That means that it must be disclosed.
With affiliate programs the influencer is not compensated upfront, but is provided with a commission or revenue share if they drive the purchase of a product. This is still considered compensation and must be disclosed.
Freedom of Voice
Disclosure does not mean you are not changing your voice, perspective, values or persona. You will always be you, and that’s why you create in the first place.
Disclosure does mean that you will be open, honest and transparent about the things that influence the content that you produce and share with your followers. This includes disclosure of organizational affiliations, compensation received for advertising, paid content generation or inclusion, as well as any form of VIP treatment or gifts received.