Influencer marketing agreements can be a complete minefield. Not only do they act as both content and legal guidelines, most of the time, they also act as the ‘job description’ as they are included within your collaboration request.
Being too rigid in your agreement will likely result in either influencers refusing the work, or stale over-prescriptive content that fails to resonate with their followers or yours. On the other hand, too loose an agreement and chances are you will either end up being dissatisfied with the outcome, or falling out of grace with influencers as you constantly push back on their creative.
Influencer agreements are a balancing act. The rule of thumb is: if it can go wrong, it will go wrong – unless you prepare well.
A well thought out influencer agreement will help you get valuable content, and save you time spent with lots of back and forth with influencers.
As such, in this blog post I take you through everything you need to include in your influencer agreement that will help you get the most out of your collaborations. At ZINE, we split this into content guidelines and campaign rules.
What To Include In Your Influencer Content Guidelines
While you do need to include some guidelines, make sure you aren’t too prescriptive. Not only does our research show that 84% of influencers prefer loose guidelines when running collaborations, we can also see that content that is obviously sponsored has far lower engagement than content that fits better with the influencers feed.
Media Type: When it comes to media type it is important that you go into specifics. From the media format (think single still image, carousel, video and so on), to the number of pieces or length of the video.
Brand / Product Visibility: If it is important for your product or brand to be front and centre, make sure you specify e.g. product visible in image vs. product front and centre of image. However, do keep in mind the sentiment above – heavily sponsored content often results in lower engagement.
Image Style: Are you happy to leave creative freedom to your influencers, or do you need to advise on the image style? If so, specify the type of content you would like to be produced e.g. flat lays, street style or close up’s and so on.
Lighting / Colour / Mood: Ideally you will leave a degree of creative freedom to the influencer. However, if you are intending on using the content for your own site / feed, think about your own brand guidelines, and see whether the influencer is able to produce content that will fit seamlessly within that.
Other Brands: Especially if you work in a competitive industry, you will need to let the influencer know whether or not ...
Caption Guidelines: My advice to this one, is creative freedom (within reason) really is key – especially when working on campaigns with multiple influencers. Nothing screams in-authenticity more than multiple posts with the exact same caption.
What To Include In Your Influencer Campaign Rules
Content Review: Chances are you / your clients will want to review the content before it goes live. This isn’t something that comes as standard – make sure you specify
Timeline: When does the content need to go live by? And if so, when will you need the first draft of content for review. Also be sure to include how long you need the post to remain live for.
Product delivery: If the influencer will need your product, make sure you let them know how it will be received / reimbursed.
Hashtags & brand tags: This may seem a little obvious, but make sure you have asked the influencer to use your chosen tag and hashtags.
Disclosure: #Ad, #Sponsored…. Before the fold. Don’t risk the fine, and the bad press from allowing ads to be posted without disclosure.
Legal Terms: It’s likely that your company will have its own legal terms by which you will need your influencers to abide by. It is best practice, within your legal terms to define who will have ownership over the content, and also any exclusivity clauses. Be mindful that these terms and conditions should not require a degree in law to understand.
At ZINE we firmly believe that the best influencer marketing content, is that which affords the influencer as much creative freedom as possible. However, in order to guarantee quality, thorough influencer research needs to be conducted. This is a process which can be tricky to scale, which is why we asked the 50k+ influencers to sign up to ZINE and connect the channels they are active across. Through doing this, brands who use the platform are able to search by multiple audience / influencer filters including average engagement creating highly targeted lists of quality influencers in minutes.
With ZINE's influencer marketing platform not only will you gain immediate access to over 50k influencers, you will be able to run more effective campaigns in half the time using our digital campaign management.
I'm Head of Marketing at ZINE where I am helping peers and customers who want to revolutionise their influencer marketing strategy. I love food, fitness and Min Pins.