Influencer marketing has become an integral part of many brands’ marketing strategies. It provides a unique way for brands to reach their target audience and drive engagement through partnerships with individuals who have a large following on social media. However, as the influencer marketing industry has grown, so has the need for regulation.
In this blog, we’ll explore the impact of increased regulation on the influencer marketing industry, and how brands can stay compliant with the influencer marketing guidelines.
The Need for Regulation
The increased regulation of influencer marketing has been driven by a need to protect consumers from deceptive advertising practices and extend the field of influencer marketing laws. The Advertising Standard Council (ASCI) in India, Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in the United States, and similar organisations in the European Union and other countries have issued influencer marketing guidelines, which require influencers to clearly label sponsored content. This helps to ensure that consumers are aware of when they are being marketed to, and can make informed decisions about the products and services being promoted.
The Impact of Increased Regulation
The increased regulation of influencer marketing has had a significant impact on the industry, particularly for brands and influencers who have been operating in a grey area. Many brands have had to reassess their influencer marketing strategies and ensure that they are operating in a compliant manner. Similarly, influencers have had to adapt their approach, and are now much more aware of the need to clearly label sponsored content.
Despite these challenges, the increased regulation of influencer marketing also has positive effects. It has helped to increase transparency and build trust between brands, influencers, and consumers. It has also helped to create a level playing field, with all parties having a clear understanding of the rules and regulations that apply.
Staying Compliant as a Brand
If you’re a brand looking to engage in influencer marketing, it’s important to stay compliant with the relevant regulations. Here are some tips to help you stay compliant:
Have a clear understanding of the regulations: Before you begin any influencer marketing campaign, it’s important to have a clear understanding of the regulations that apply. This will help you to ensure that your campaigns are compliant and that you are not putting your brand at risk.
Work with influencers who understand the regulations: It’s important to work with influencers who have a good understanding of the regulations, who are committed to following them, and that you are smoothly running your campaign.
Provide clear guidelines to influencers: Provide clear guidelines to influencers and outline the regulations that apply before proceeding with the collaboration, and the steps they need to take to stay compliant.
Monitor influencer content: Regularly monitor influencer content. If you identify any non-compliant content, take action to have it removed or corrected.
Keep records: Keep records of your influencer marketing campaigns, including contracts, guidelines, and any other relevant documents. This will help to demonstrate your commitment to compliance and will be useful if you need to defend your brand against any potential regulatory action.
Staying Compliant as an Influencer
If you are an influencer working with brands of any such content, you need to keep certain things in mind before proceeding with the collaboration.
Ask the brand what its objective is: This is the most important aspect you should focus on as an influencer before you collaborate with a brand is asking and analysing their end objective of the collaboration for you to get a clear understanding of the brand’s objective.
See if you align with the brand’s objective: After analysing the brand’s expectations from you, see if you align with the brand’s collaboration objective so that you can proceed with the partnership.
Ask the brand for transparent guidelines: For you, as an influencer, asking for a clear outline of the guidelines is crucial. Better safe than sorry, right?
Keep a track of the mentions: As an influencer, you are responsible for using the correct mentions for compliance with the guidelines to avoid any future conflict arising out of the collaboration and content. The trick is to clearly label the sponsored content.
The significant impact of the influencer marketing regulations has made the brands and the influencers more responsible towards their audience. This has increased the trust factor between brands, influencers, and consumers to a very large extent and has cut down the chances of deceptive and unethical advertising.