An influencer marketing collaboration involves a brand and an advertiser/influencer coming together in a mutually beneficial, and legal relationship.
Given the implications for both parties, it is important that the expectations of this relationship are clearly defined and understood and, that the parties interests are protected in the event that the other fails to satisfy their obligations.
These relationships are unique because most influencers and brands are unique. For this reason, it is important that a ‘one-size-fits-all’ contract, which seem to be circulating the internet, are not relied upon. The parties should not have to change their business models to shoe horn themselves into a document. Rather, they ought to customise the document to fit their specific and unique needs.
Make sure that the agreement you have written up includes (at least) the following:
Contract basics: You are entering into a contract between two or more parties and must include an accurate description of all entities involved and the date that the contract is drawn up.
Timeframes: Whether it be a one-off or long-term relationship, this needs to be clearly defined in the agreement.
Ownership: Who retains ownership of all content and copyrights. Just because you created something does not mean that you are protected if someone tries to claim it as their own if there is no formal agreement in place. What happens to products provided if the agreement is not satisfied?
Deliverables: The expectations and any penalties if they are not fulfilled. This includes who retains creative control, image specifications, which social media channels the content will be posted to, and when. Are there any limitations on the influencer?
Termination: under what circumstances the agreement can be cancelled and what steps are to be taken?
Brand alignment: Ensure that the influencer uses acceptable terms for the brand and guides the influencer in how they can use and describe the brand, including things you want the influencer to avoid.
Approval expectations: Does the brand wish to preview and approve posts before they are made live.
Confidentiality and Exclusivity: One of the most important parts of the agreement as often sensitive information is shared within an influencer collaboration and all parties need to make sure that their ideas and information are protected from competitors. Will the influencer be dedicated to the brand, only discussing the one brand in their posts?
Compensation and Payment: Will the influencer be compensated by free products, incentives or a fixed fee? When will the payment be due?
Australian Consumer Law: both parties are liable to uphold the standards set out in this legislation.
Finally, if you are not using an influencer agreement when collaborating with an influencer or brand then you are potentially giving your brand or marketing skills away for free. Too often we see people not using an agreement and then when things inevitably go wrong, they haven’t got a leg to stand on.
Social media marketing is a professional industry, so those involved ought to treat any relationships they form within the industry as commercial relationships and protect themselves accordingly.
If you are an influencer or a brand that is looking to use social media influencers, please contact Grauf O'Brien Lawyers for an obligation free discussion.