What the FTC’s social media changes mean for your brand

New guidelines from the Federal Trade Commission tighten the reins on online marketers. The protocols aren’t without bite, either. Crackdowns for flagrant violations seem to be looming.

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Are you on alert?

For the first time in five years, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has updated the FAQ page of its endorsement guidelines. The new rules call mainly for stricter disclosure requirements on the relationships between brands and influencers.

The need for transparency isn’t new, but now the FTC’s guidance is more specific. Besides the demand for clarity from influencers, the latest guidelines also require disclosure for contests and sweepstakes, videos and images.

“With the rise of social media, and things like Periscope, there is a lot more user-generated content,” says Chris Lucas, VP of marketing at Formstack. “It makes sense now to update the guidelines to even the playing field.”

Consumers value honesty, and with the new guidelines everything is out in the open, so there’s nothing preventing consumers from trusting your brand. Here are four tips to ensure you are complying with the FTC’s guidelines and doing everything you can to build consumer trust:

1. Define endorser relationships clearly.

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