Disclosing the relationship between a brand and their influencers is crucially important for this whole system to work. First of all, this is an official requirement according to the Federal Trade Commission. The influencers you hire must let the people who see their posts know that they get any kind of compensation from advertising and reviewing your brand.
It doesn’t matter if the compensation is financial or takes another form, the consumers must know the fact that it takes place.
The Problem of Influencer Ad Authenticity
The problem is that both brands and influencers want the blog or social media posts about the promoted products to look authentic to receive feedback from consumers. However, the official requirement is to make sure people know this is an advertisement. But after the people see it’s just influencer marketing, they will realize it’s just an ad. And there might be doubts, no matter how good it is. So it’s important to find this gray area, where you tell them it’s an ad but still make it authentic.
The Different Forms of Influencer Disclosure
The most important difference is the type of content you use for an advertisement. If you use your blog as an influencer, you might want to include a small sentence somewhere in the post about the fact that you have a compensated position. Social media posts are so much easier to work with. You can just add a hashtag to your post saying “ad”, and it’s vital that whatever you use, you make it as easy as possible.
The Federal Trade Commission doesn’t allow to use hashtags that say “spon” (stands for “sponsored”), because it’s a shortened word that not everyone may understand. So, to say simply, use “the grandma test” – make the disclosure simple and clear for anyone.
Other Important Influencer Marketing Points
- Don’t force the influencer to lie./Don’t agree to work with the brands that ask you to lie.
Make sure you explain everything to the influencer/the brand. False claims (any claims, to be honest) will be, first of all, be perceived with skepticism, so don’t write any bold words in your ads. This will have a tone of objectivity and adequate description, which is very important if you want to gain your customers’ trust.
- Check everything every time.
Especially if you hired an influencer for a campaign, make sure you check everything he or she says about your products or services everywhere. Check it constantly and talk to them if something is wrong, because a campaign might improve or destroy your business.
- Make sure you choose an influencer/a brand correctly.
Before you start cooperating, make sure you ask yourself whether this influencer/brand suits your style and your needs. Read the comments/reviews before you give your final reply to see how people react to ads from this account/brand.
Make sure you follow the rules, no matter whether you’re a brand or an influencer. This will improve your reputation tenfold and draw more attention and customers/followers.