Given how much time we spend on social media platforms like Instagram and considering how visual it is, it is not surprising that brands and companies are flocking to the platform and paying Instagrammers money to advertise their products. Dubbed “influencers”, this is pretty common especially amongst celebrities and professional athletes.
However it seems that the FTC is keeping a close eye on these advertising practices, and according to a report from Business Insider, the FTC has recently sent about 90 warning letters to Instagram influencers in which the government body reminded them that their relationship to brands must be clearly disclosed when promoting or endorsing products on their social media pages.
This means that if an Instagrammer were to post about a product, they need to make it clear to their followers that it is an ad or a promotion or that they are using a sponsored product, as opposed to them using it personally. The warnings also includes how these disclosures must be made, such as how it cannot be buried towards the end of photo captions where it could be missed.
They are also warning about labels that too vague, such as abbreviating “sponsored post” into “#sp” and so on. If you’re getting a bit sick of seeing your feed flooded with misleading promotions, then hopefully the FTC warning to Instagram influencers will help clean things up a bit.