Social Media Lawyers

It might be your first social media project or you are proficient in social media focussed advertising & marketing, our team is here to help. Our lawyers can navigate you through the legal formalities required when publicising your brand online. 

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Social Media Laws

Social media focused projects encompass a diverse range of initiatives that leverage the power of social media platforms to achieve various objectives. These projects can be broadly categorised into three main areas:

Marketing and Brand Awareness: Social media marketing campaigns, influencer partnerships, and social media content creation are common projects aimed at promoting brands, products, or services to a wide audience.

Community Engagement and Social Good: Social media can be utilised to foster community engagement, organise social activism campaigns, or raise awareness for social causes. These projects can involve creating online communities, running social media challenges, or collaborating with non-profit organisations.

Customer Service and Support: Social media platforms provide direct communication channels with customers, enabling businesses to provide prompt customer support, address concerns, and gather feedback. Social media listening and sentiment analysis are also utilised to understand customer perceptions and improve products or services.

Our team can work with you collaboratively to ensure such projects are commercially and legally sound, encompassing an array of areas including brand protection, intellectual property, data protection, competition law and compliance with advertising bodies. Our understanding of the market and law means we are able to apply a commercial and contractually sound perspective to our support and advice. 

Influencer Lawyers
Social Media Policies
Digital Advertisement 
Sponsorships
Training & Workshops
Intellectual Property (IP) 
Data Protection & Privacy
Disputes

Influencer Lawyers

In 2009, we saw a huge influx of bloggers and YouTubers. Fast forward to the present day and many businesses are now expanding their own social media platforms to boost sales and grow an online presence.

Particularly on apps such as Instagram and TikTok, digital marketing has risen substantially as businesses promote their products and services on these platforms – particularly through the use of paid/branded sponsorships and influencer marketing. Influencer marketing is not without risk, both for the influencer and brand. It is therefore important to ensure that appropriate parameters and processes are agreed and documented.

What should an influencer be looking out for?
It is important to ensure that the commerciality and risk allocation of the arrangement is captured and backed up by a set of binding clauses, to ensure that both parties are protected.

Our Influencer Lawyers provide our clients with a wide range of services – both for businesses interested in engaging with influencers and influencers respectively needing advice on new partnership and branding deals. Our media team have experience in the preparation and drafting of influencer agreements, tailored to the needs of our clients.

Social Media Policies

Social media policies play a crucial role in today’s digital landscape, ensuring that individuals and organisations navigate the online world responsibly and ethically.

These policies establish clear guidelines for:

  • Online behaviour
  • Protecting reputations
  • Reducing the risk of legal issues
  • Fostering a positive and productive online environment. 

Social media policies serve as essential tools for managing brand reputation, ensuring consistency with company values, and mitigating legal risks. They outline acceptable usage of social media platforms by employees, protecting confidential information, preventing discriminatory or offensive content, and maintaining a positive public image. 

Our media team can work closely with your business so that your social media policy fosters your company’s values and ethos whilst setting out the expectations you have of your employees. 

Commercial Contract Services & FAQs

Digital Advertisement 

With 4.26 billion yearly users globally, it is undeniable that social media plays a significant and important role in both our personal and professional lives. Gone are the days where consumers need to physically shop and businesses are instead investing in digital marketing strategies as an advantageous approach to both B2B and B2C transactions. Getting it right, however, is pivotal in the success of your digital advertisement campaigns and our media team can provide advice on applicable advertising laws.

The ASA provides guidelines for advertising in the UK, including influencer marketing. Influencers are expected to make it clear when content is an advertisement, and they should not mislead their audience. Disclosures, such as #ad or ##advertisement, should be used to indicate sponsored content. The disclosure must tell the full story or go far enough to make it obvious that it is advertising. Sitting within the ASA is the CAP (Committee of Advertising Practice) code, a sister organisation of ASA which is responsible for the CAP and BCAP codes. The CAP code is the rule book for non-broadcast advertisements, sales promotions and direct marketing communications. For broadcast advertisements on radio and television, the BCAP (Broadcast Committee of Advertising Practice) code applies.

Transparency and Authenticity: There is an emphasis on transparency and authenticity in influencer marketing. Influencers are encouraged to be honest about their relationships with brands, and the audience should be able to distinguish between promotional content and regular posts.

Consumer Protection Laws: General consumer protection laws apply to influencer marketing. Misleading advertising practices are not allowed, and influencers should not make false claims about products or services.

Data Protection Laws: Influencers and the brand company need to comply with data protection laws, such as the UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR), when collecting and using personal data.

Competitions and Prizes: If an influencer runs a competition or offers prizes, they should adhere to the relevant laws and regulations governing such activities.

Sponsorships

Sponsorships and endorsements can be an effective way for businesses to promote their products and services.

The Consumer Protection of Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 (“CPUT”) is the main piece of legislation that controls marketing and advertising to consumers.

CPUT defines the ‘average consumer’ as someone who is reasonably well informed, reasonably observant and circumspect. In determining the effect of commercial practices on the average consumer, CPUT notes that advertisers must consider consumers who are particularly vulnerable because of their mental or physical infirmity, age or credulity in which an advertiser must reasonably expect to foresee.

When signing sponsorship deals with either individuals or companies, consumer protection is a fundamental element and our team are here to help. In the event that you are intending on entering into a sponsorship deal, our media team have experience of review the terms to ensure that your business is compliant with these regulations, as well as advising on related intellectual property rights and data protection considerations.

Training & Workshops

Our team of experienced media lawyers can provide specialist legal training on media law and relevant topics, tailored to suit your business.

We are able to offer training onsite, at our offices, or an location of your choosing. Alternatively, we can provide training remotely using video conferencing facilities.

Training sessions are tailored to meet the needs of your business, addressing repeated issues or new issues your business might face and provide updates on legal developments. We are experienced in providing training to staff across all departments, including in-house legal counsel and sales teams, to ensure that they are updated and aware of current media law and / or relevant media and entertainment topics which might affect them in their roles.

An example of topics covered includes:

How can my business optimise influencer marketing?

  • What are the laws around influencer marketing?
  • What type of agreements should I have in place and what are the key commercial risks my business should consider when engaging with an influencer?
  • What is the CAP code and how it is enforced if there is a breach?
  • What are our top tips are on ensuring your brand is protected?

Training can be provided as a one-off refresher course, or as a point of an ongoing compliance programme.

Intellectual Property (IP) 

Naturally for buisinesses in the media and marketing industries, Intellectual Property Rights and their protection will be of fundamental important. 

 Intellectual Property encompasses a vast and diverse array of business property from software and other copyright materials, to designs and logos and inventions and processes. The laws surrounding Intellectual Property fall into a number of areas, copyright, trade marks, design rights and patents.

Our Intellectual Property team have assisted start-ups through to multi-national businesses protecting their IP.  How can we help you:

  • Copyright & Trade Marks
  • Brand Protection
  • Buying and Selling Intellectual Property Rights
  • Intellectual Property Licences
  • IP Disputes
  • Outsourced IP Services
  • Protecting a Design
  • Training and Workshops

Intellectual Property Services & FAQs

Data Protection

Data is a valuable business asset and data protection compliance is a critical issue for companies and individuals alike. Our expert data protection lawyers regularly advise on a variety of complex data protection issues. Our services include:

  • Data Breaches
  • Employment Data Protection
  • Subject Access Requests
  • Compliance
  • Disputes
  • Audits
  • Policies

In addition, we also advise on a wide range of data protection matters, such as:

  • The use of cookies and other tracking technologies
  • The transfer of personal data to third countries
  • The use of personal data for marketing purposes

Whether you have just established your company or are an experienced data protection officer, our understanding of the market and law means we are able to apply a commercial and contractually sound perspective to our support and advice.

Data Protection Services

Dispute Resolution

Our Dispute Resolution lawyers cover a full range of disputes from the complex and high value to the more modest. We represent clients in the courts, arbitration tribunals and use alternative procedures, including mediation, to resolve disputes.

Our Dispute Resolution team can support you with:

  • Asset Recovery
  • Business Disputes
  • Data Protection Breach
  • Land & Property Disputes
  • Intellectual Property Disputes
  • Professional Negligence
  • Debt Recovery

Dispute Resolution Services

FAQs

What is influencer marketing? 

Influencer marketing is a strategy where brands collaborate with individuals who have a significant and engaged following on social media platforms to promote their products or services. These individuals, known as influencers, leverage their credibility, expertise, or popularity to endorse and showcase the brand’s offerings to their audience, aiming to influence consumer behaviour and drive sales. The collaboration often involves a mutually beneficial relationship where influencers receive compensation, products, or other incentives in exchange for promoting the brand to their followers.

What are the main regulations in media law?

Within the media realm, there are a large variety of legislation and regulations that apply which include UK and EU GDPR, data protection laws, intellectual property laws, advertising regulations (ASA, with the CAP and BCAP codes), Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations, to name a few. The newly pledged Media Bill, however, will update decades-old legislation to ‘unleash the power of British broadcasters to attract bigger audiences in the UK and abroad’. 

What type of agreement should I have for my marketing project?

This will be dependent on the type and nature of the project. At Herrington Carmichael, we always take the time to understand whether standard terms and conditions would be needed, or whether bespoke agreements should rather be in place. We have experience in drafting and negotiating an array of media law focused agreements, including influencer agreements, general terms and conditions, collaboration agreements, joint venture agreements to name a few. 

What happens to businesses that market in a false or misleading way?

There are a number of potential sanctions for breach of advertising and marketing laws. For example, The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) can issue civil penalties of up to £500,000 for breaches of the Advertising Code. Also, businesses that engage in misleading or deceptive advertising can be prosecuted under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008. This can result in fines of up to £5 million for businesses and up to two years’ imprisonment for individuals. Further, businesses may also be liable for damages to consumers who have suffered loss as a result of the breach. Non-compliance with marketing and advertising laws can also damage a business’s brand and reputation and make it difficult to attract and retain customers.

Why is learning about brand protection important for my business?

Training in this area encourages a culture of protecting the brand identity and legal compliance. Employees become more aware of the value of the brand, importance of protection and ways to protect the brand while preventing dilution or misrepresentation of the brand. In order to utilise media law focused initiatives, it is important to ensure your brand is reflected in a way that is legally compliant but also aligns throughout the business to avoid inconsistencies in the overall message of such branding. 

How can media law training increase my revenue?

We will provide information on various avenues that can be explored to enable your business to increase its revenue. Advice on intellectual property registration, licensing deals and partnerships can generate additional income and contribute to your businesses overall financial growth. 

Why should my business receive training on media and entertainment law?

Whether the workshop is attended by just your marketing department or opened up to the wider team, you will receive knowledge to safeguard your brand and ensure that your media projects and strategies are both commercially and legally sound. We can provide you with an understanding on the general marketing and advertising regulations as well as offer advice on ensuring the overall branding of the business is protected. 

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