I am using an affiliate link in my social media posts. Do I need to give any kind of disclaimer?

The ASA who police the CAP Code which is the relevant Code for affiliate marketing, state that “If all of the links within a single post are affiliate links and the post appears on social media where there is no character limit, for example on Facebook, it is likely that the post will need to include an identifier at the beginning, for example “Ad”.   In addition, although not a requirement, affiliate marketers may choose to state within the post that they receive a small share of sales through the link(s).

In contexts where only an image is initially visible, for example on Instagram, it is likely that an identifier like “Ad” should be included on the image itself so that the nature of the content is clear before consumers engage with the post by clicking on the image.”

A post on @aliyahmariabee’s Instagram, featuring an image of Aliyah holding a pot of Coco Shine teeth whitener and the caption “Morning y’all so recently I’ve been using this teeth whitener and I’m very happy with my results. It’s super affordable make sure you guys go check out @cocoshineau (DISCOUNT CODE: ALIYAH40 for 40% off)”, was judged to be in breach of the Code.

The ASA considered it insufficient not only because it was partially obscured by the “swipe up” button, but also because the term “affiliate” itself was not widely understood by consumers.

On Twitter, as space is limited, labelling the content with “Ad” or similar is likely to be the clearest way of identifying it as advertising.  Similarly, on Pinterest where the amount of content actually controlled by the ‘pinner’ is limited, placing “Ad” or similar at the beginning of the free text ‘Description’, because only a small portion of this appears without clicking, is likely to be acceptable.”

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