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03 . 29 | Influencer Law

Should California Social Media Influencers Negotiate Their Own Contracts?

There is a fundamental truth when it comes to business: there is always “overhead.” Sometimes it is minimal. Sometimes it is considerable. In either case, it is always a consideration, especially if you have your own business or you are just starting one.

As a social media influencer, your business costs likely include those incurred for monthly internet access, computer equipment, and/or smartphone. You’ll also have to pay for any peripheral equipment or services you need to facilitate live streaming and other activities. These are your “hard costs.”

While you probably won’t have to worry about renting an office or paying staff, you may have discretionary costs. Among other things, you’ll have to decide whether to retain legal counsel for services such as negotiating your social media contracts. Of course, you may also be tempted to negotiate your own contracts. The question is whether or not you should. Keep reading to find out.

Why is a social media influencer contract so important?

As a social media influencer, it is critical that you have signed, written agreements with each of the brands you represent. This is because it is the single best way to avoid any misunderstandings. Furthermore, a signed, written contract makes an agreement official, and is legally binding or enforceable.

 A typical contract should detail:

  • The type of content you will provide
  • How often you provide it
  • Where it will be provided (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.)
  • How much you’ll get paid
  • The basis for payment
  • Metrics for/proof of success
  • Each party’s legal obligations

Some contracts also include stipulations regarding your ability to work with multiple brands, your behavior, and what constitutes brand disparagement.

The DIY approach — using a social media influencer contract template

An Internet search quickly reveals plenty of options if you want to create your own social media influencer contract. All you need to do is use a template.  The selection ranges from simple versions, which you can download for free, to more elaborate versions with prices to match.

But before you choose a template, you have to know which terms to include. And in order to do that, you have to negotiate those terms. Negotiating your own contract may be an option if you have relevant experience or feel confident in your ability to do so.  Even if that’s the case, consider having an attorney review the terms before you sign anything. He or she can easily identify the terms that should or shouldn’t be included so you can approach the other party about making necessary changes and avoid unnecessary headaches in the long run.

The benefits of having a Los Angeles lawyer negotiate your contract

You may think that doing everything yourself may be a good way to save some money. While that may be true in the short term, it isn’t necessarily so in the long term. For one thing, you may open yourself up to legal action if you sign and fail to abide by a contract. Secondly, you may inadvertently “short change” yourself by negotiating the contract yourself.

Having an attorney negotiate your contract levels the playing field – especially with a big brand represented by big law firms. Here at LawPLA, for example, our attorneys are used to negotiating and drafting all sorts of contracts for our clients. We are familiar with the issues and laws relevant to social media influencers and the brands they represent. Ensuring that you have a fair contract that protects you from legal action is our chief concern.

It does not matter if you are new to the world of social media influencers, or if you were one of its pioneers. The legal team at LawPLA is happy to review and/or draft your contracts. All you need to do is give us a call or fill out the form on our contact page to get started.

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