Effective disclosure techniques are crucial for social media influencers working with brands to comply with legal requirements and maintain transparency with their audience. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) provides guidelines for influencers to ensure that their endorsements clearly disclose a material connection with the brand. Disclosures are necessary when there is any financial, employment, personal, or family relationship with a brand, even if not asked to mention a product after receiving free or discounted products or perks from a brand. To make effective disclosures, influencers should make sure that the disclosure is easy to notice by placing it with the endorsement message itself. Placing the disclosure in an ‘About Me’or profile page, at the end of posts or videos, or anywhere that requires a person to click more will likely be missed by the audience.
Influencers should use simple and clear language for the disclosure, such as ‘advertisement,’ ‘ad,’ or ‘sponsored,’ and repeat the exposure periodically when making an endorsement in a live stream. It is also essential to use the same language for the disclosure as the endorsement itself and to include the disclosure in the video or superimpose it over the picture when making an endorsement in a picture on platforms like Snapchat and Instagram Stories. By following these guidelines, social media influencers can effectively disclose sponsored content and comply with FTC guidelines.