The UK Competition and Markets Authority has received commitments from 16 influencers ensuring they will comply with the new rules it has set out
Ellie Goulding was among the 16 influencers to pledge her commitment
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has laid down the law with influencers endorsing products on their social media outlets.
This week 16 celebrities have made formal commitments to ensure they will clearly say if they have been paid or received gifts or loans from products they endorse.
This includes singers Ellie Goulding and Rita Ora; models Alexa Chung, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and Michelle Keegan; and reality TV stars Millie Mackintosh and Megan McKenna.
Companies and brands are known to use influencers as part of their marketing strategy, who can promote their products or services to millions of followers.
However, the ambiguity of these posts has come under scrutiny after the personalities were not clearly stating if the posts were sponsored.
As a result, the governing body opened an investigation in August last year to address these concerns.
This saw the CMA write to a number of celebrities to gather information about the posts and the nature of their agreements with brands.
Made in Chelsea star Louise Thompson was called out for misleading posts without using #ad // Image via @louise.thompson
Commenting on the investigation George Lusty, the CMA’s Senior Director for Consumer Protection, said: “If people see clothes, cosmetics, a car, or a holiday being plugged by someone they admire, they might be swayed into buying it.
“So, it’s really important they are clearly told whether a celebrity is promoting a product because they have bought it themselves, or because they have been paid or thanked in some way by the brand.”
The CMA has ruled a number of guidelines which celebrities must adhere to when posting online:
An example of a paid sponsorship with reality TV star Tiffany Watson and Unilever // In,age via @tiffanyc_watson
In the report the CMA has also expressed what does not meet the criteria:
Talking about the new guidelines Andrea Coscelli, CEO of CMA, said : “You should be able to tell as soon as you look at a post if there is some form of payment or reward involved, so you can decide whether something is really worth spending your hard-earned money on.”