“Do we really need an influencer agreement?
You’d rather focus on getting your creator campaigns started than on paperwork, right?
But as influencer budgets boom and brands ramp up campaigns, contracts are common.
And the more creators you work with, the more your agreements matter.
Also, consider how contracts can help you streamline the process of hiring creators. With a contract template, you eliminate the need to hash out details with creators one by one. This reduces back-and-forth and means you can get started ASAP.
Below we break down the basics of influencer agreements and what details should be in yours.
What is an Influencer Agreement?
An influencer agreement is a contract between brands and creators. These agreements outline expectations and requirements influencers must follow during campaigns. Influencer contracts also serve as a way for brands to cover their legal bases.
If your company already works with contractors, most details in this agreement will be familiar. In short, a creator contract covers details of your influencer relationships including:
- Scope of work and services
- Deliverables and compensation
- Content usage rights and exclusivity
- Brand specific-guidelines
- Terms of termination
Note that not all campaigns require an influencer agreement. For example, sending products to influencers via gifting campaigns is a contract-free process. That’s because you’re sending gifts.
Important: an influencer agreement is not the same as a creative brief. Contracts cover business duties and responsibilities. Creative briefs are related to the requirements of your creators' social posts. Working with influencers often involves one contract but multiple briefs.
Why Influencer Agreements Matter for Brands and Creators
Creators shouldn’t be asked to sign contracts “just because.” Let’s quickly look at why formal agreements are a win-win for brands and creators alike.
Agreements Make Your Business Relationship Official
Whether full-time or as a side hustle, influencers are business owners.
And so brands should approach influencers like they would any other contractor.
Experienced influencers will expect a contract. They might bring their own terms to the table, too.
Food for thought: 79% of creators believe they can be more valuable to brands by working with them long-term. Making your partnership “official” with a contract signals both sides’ commitment.
If nothing else, a formal influencer agreement means that you won’t get ghosted. On the flip side, handshake agreements offer no recourse for brands if a creator doesn’t post.
Contracts Clarify Expectations (and Encourage Better Content)
Communicating expectations is a big challenge among brands and creators.
Deadlines. Tone of voice. Content formatting. The list goes on and on.
The clearer your expectations are from the word “go,” the better for both parties. Your influencer agreement serves as a document that states what’s expected of creators in plain English.
If you want to demand more of your creators, your contract should reflect that. Do you have a detailed content approval process? Want to require check-ins? Do you expect influencers to report analytics to you?
Cool! Just make sure your agreement spells out all of the above.
Contracts Keep Your Legal Bases Covered
Most companies run influencer marketing campaigns without ever running into legal issues.
Still, keep in mind what the FTC says about influencers and product endorsements:
“Your company is ultimately responsible for what others do on your behalf.”
For brands, a binding agreement offers peace of mind. Contracts can likewise deter potential influencer fraud and protect you in case something does go wrong.
Influencer Contract Checklist: What Brands Should Include
“Okay, so I need to draft a contract. Now what?”
Onto the good stuff! Writing an influencer contract from scratch can feel like a balancing act. You want to cover all your bases but you don’t want to overwhelm creators with details.
But even if you’re using an existing contract template, note that influencer promotions aren’t one-size-fits-all. This is especially true as platforms and industries evolve.
Not sure what to say? Below is a snapshot of the details to include in your agreement and questions to consider.
✅ Scope of Work / Summary
Here you’ll summarize the big-picture details of your influencer partnership, including:
- What is the nature of the relationship between you and the creator?
- What deliverables are the creator responsible for (think: TikTok videos, Instagram Reels)?
- What is the purpose of your influencer agreement? (one sentence summary)
✅ Content Requirements
Here you’ll delve into the specifics of the content and deliverables produced by the creator:
- How many pieces of content is the creator responsible for?
- Adherence to your brand guidelines, approval process and creative briefs
- Exclusions (terms and/or competitors that should not be mentioned in posts)
- Whether you (the brand) reserve the right to edit the creator’s content
- Acknowledgment that all content created is original
- Acknowledgment of FTC disclosures and best practices for influencers
✅ Exclusivity, Usage Rights and Ownership
Repurposing influencer and user-generated content is a smart move for brands. That said, you need to be clear about influencer usage rights if you plan to do so. This section of your influencer agreement should cover:
- Who owns the rights to content produced by the creator?
- Do the rights to your influencer content transfer back to the creator?
- If so, when? (30 days, 60 days, 90 days, etc)
- Can content be repurposed by the brand (via whitelisting or branded content ads)?
✅ Agreement Duration and Timeline
The length of an influencer campaign can range anywhere from a few weeks to ongoing, always-on promotions. You may plan to work for influencers indefinitely which is totally fine. Just make sure your contact covers:
- The effective date of your agreement
- How long your agreement is valid for
- Deadlines for submission, approval and revisions (if necessary)
How (and how much) to pay content creators is a hot topic. No matter how you go about it, your contact should be clear about:
- The creator’s rate for their services (think: are they invoicing $[x] per post or hourly)
- How the creator is being paid (think: direct deposit, PayPal)
- Payment scheduling (think: upon receipt, invoicing, 14-day or 30-day payment terms)
✅ Data Access
The importance of influencer reporting can’t be overstated. That said, creators aren’t obligated to share numbers unless specified in their influencer marketing agreement. Consider:
- Which engagement metrics they’re expected to track
- How often they need to report their data (and over what period of time)
- Tracking and formatting preferences (think: analytics screenshots versus reporting in a spreadsheet or email)
✅ Terms of Termination
For your protection and freedom to cut ties with creators when things aren’t working out, termination clauses are critical. This includes:
- An at-will termination clause
- A breach of contract clause
- A notice of termination clause
With all of the details above ironed out, you can then build out your own influencer contract template using tools like:
What Else Should Brands Know About Influencer Contracts?
We get it: there’s a lot that goes into any given influencer agreement.
But covering all of these bases is crucial for both your protection and ensuring that you and your creators are all on the same page.
And if you don’t want to deal with contracts or digital handshakes, we’ve got you covered.
When you work with a turn-key influencer marketing platform like Statusphere, you don’t have to juggle any of these details. In fact, the process of negotiating with influencers is totally hands-off.
That’s because we only work with influencers from our vetted, hand-picked network. We do all of the heavy lifting when it comes to negotiating, fulfillment and making sure that you earn the best creator content possible. No chasing contracts required on your end, either!
Want to learn more about how Statusphere works? Get in touch with one of our consumer-to-consumer marketing specialists to see how we can get creators posting about your brand ASAP.Disclaimer: We're influencer marketing specialists, not lawyers ourselves! This content is not legal advice and you should definitely consult a legal professional based on your needs and questions. We do not make any guarantees as to the accuracy or completeness of this information and take no liability or legal obligations for your use of this information.