Online marketing and more specifically the use of social media platforms is more often than not at the very core of most businesses’ marketing strategy. If you have a company for which you do marketing or if you are a brand’s social media manager, there are a couple of legal aspects you should be conscious of when promoting yourself online.
Of course, please take this as legal information and not legal advice. If you have any questions regarding marketing and the law, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Copyright law is often discussed in the posts on this blog because it remains a legal concept people have a lot of misconceptions about.
If you want to use visual content in your online marketing, make sure it is content you have created. If you hired someone to shoot content for you (a photographer or even your social media manager), make sure you have a written agreement with them where they give you a license to use the pictures they created for you. Remember that independent contractors own all the content they create, even if you paid for it.
If the content you want to use does not belong to someone you know, you must ask for their permission before posting anything on your social media platforms.
2) Right of publicity
Be very careful about using someone’s influence or likeness to promote your products. For instance, if a photographer happens to take a picture of a celebrity walking out of your store, you cannot use that picture on your social media platforms for marketing purposes unless you ask for that celebrity’s permission.
3) Anti-Spam law
Email marketing is one of the most efficient marketing tools a company could use. However, you have to make sure all communications respect Canada’s Anti-Spam legislation. This law requires three elements: 1) you need consent from your users (whether express or implied), 2) you need to provide identification information about your company, and 3) you need to provide your users with an unsubscribe mechanism.
4) Sponsored content
Influencer marketing is still very popular and with that popularity comes a set of legal guidelines that should be followed. If you are paying someone to talk about a product, to create content around a product or if you are sending someone products for free in exchange for exposure, they need to disclose all of that, whether by using hashtags, including disclaimers in your posts, etc. If you plan on reposting that content on your own platforms, these rules apply too. If you need more information on influencer marketing, you can check out my legal guide for online influencers.
If you need some legal advice regarding your marketing, do not hesitate to send us an email at email@example.com or click the link below to schedule a consultation.