In a bid to rein in dubious market tactics, the central government is mulling to introduce new guidelines for social media influencers that would make it mandatory for them and creators to make disclosures about their paid reviews or paid promotions, the media has reported. The new guidelines would regulate the industry and penalise the creators and influencers by as much as Rs 50 lakh if they do not disclose their financial ties with brands.
The new guidelines are likely to be rolled out in the next two weeks.
Content creators and social media influencers are popular and they are being paid by brands to promote their products on social media.
The Department of Consumer Affairs is coming out with guidelines on social media influencers. It is creating dos and don’ts for them, an official source was quoted as saying by news agency PTI.
According to the proposed guidelines, the social media influencers would have to declare their association with a brand if they take money from them to endorse a product. According to a report by LiveMint, the Indian influencer marketing industry is valued at close to Rs 900 crore and it is likely to surpass Rs 2,000 crore by 2025.
Among the biggest spenders on influencer marketing are companies in mobile and electronics, personal care, fashion and jewellery.
In May, the Department of Consumer Affairs along with the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) held a virtual meeting with stakeholders, including e-commerce entities, to discuss the magnitude of fake reviews on their platforms, the PTI report added.
It should be noted that this is not the first time that such an attempt is being made to rein in dubious marketing tactics. Earlier in July 2021, the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) had started monitoring digital and social media platforms for violations of its influencer advertising guidelines.