SOCIAL MEDIA AND WEB POSTING POLICY + FTC Guidelines
Thank you for your engagement with Catapult Leaders (“Catapult Leaders” or “us” or the “Brand”) and previously reading the Catapult Leaders Brand Ambassador Program, Terms & Conditions here. In connection with your endorsing (as defined below) the Brand in any written publication (whether in print, blog or any social media account), you must abide by the following guidelines. If you do not agree to abide by these guidelines, you must either (a) immediately return any compensation, gift or other item of value provided to you by Catapult Leaders, (b) remove the content you created from circulation, or (c) take both of the aforementioned actions.
For your reference, and for purposes of these guidelines, an “endorsement” by you is a statement or message that people are likely to believe reflects your opinions, beliefs, findings, or experiences, even if the views expressed by you are identical to those of the sponsoring advertiser. This generally means a post on social media, whether you write text, post video, post photos, or a mixture of all media.
1. Disclose your relationship on EVERY post. If you are provided anything of value to make an endorsement (including free memberships!) you must, at the least, disclose that the post is sponsored or paid. You can do this via a hashtag or you can use more native language, like, “I’ve partnered with Catapult Leaders…” or “Catapult Leaders invited me to #GetAGreatJob…” Wherever you endorse our services, you MUST disclose your relationship with the Brand, no matter what platform you use it (e.g., Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, etc.).
2. Make the Disclosure Plain, Proximate, and Prominent. This disclosure must be “clear and conspicuous,” meaning it must be in plain language, as close as possible to the endorsement, and easy to find or read (e.g., in a regular-sized font, ideally in a different color from the other statements in your post).
3. Make the Disclosure Early. Wherever possible, the disclosure should appear at the beginning of, or before, the endorsement. If the full disclosure cannot appear at the top of the post or article, provide a brief disclosure at the top and provide additional details relevant to the disclosure at the bottom of the post or article. So, if you are writing a blog post, your first few sentences should read something like: “Catapult Leaders was kind enough to invite me for a day to improve my resume…” If on Twitter or Instagram, try to put your hashtags towards the beginning so people won’t miss them or they won’t be hidden.
4. Make the Disclosure Often. You cannot have your disclosure located in just one post or on a general disclosure page applicable to all content initiated on your account, website or periodical. It must appear in each and every endorsement, even if this means repeating the same disclosure multiple times. If on a blog or video, best practice is to disclose in the beginning, middle, and end.
5. If the Disclosure Doesn’t Fit, Try Again. If a particular social media platform (e.g., Twitter) does not provide the space for a full disclosure statement with every endorsement, please abide by the following guidelines:
Catapult Leaders Social Media and Web Posting Policy
1. Use “#AD” to disclose before any tweeted endorsement. Make sure that the hashtag comes before any links in your tweet, so a consumer does not have the chance to skip over the disclosure.
2. Hyperlinks don’t cut it – so a Tweet where you write, “Catapult Leaders is the best company in the whole world! They have the best networking events!” where the word “best” is a link to your disclaimer, that is NOT acceptable.
3. If there is a LOT of additional information relevant to your disclosure (e.g., terms of service that the Brand requires you to include) you may provide that in a hyperlink, but that hyperlink must also be plain, proximate and prominent.
4. Any hyperlink should adequately convey the nature and importance of the information in question, i.e., it should be labeled “Important Career Information,” rather than “For more information, click here.”
5. Match the Medium. If your post is made up of text, the disclosure should be in text. if your post is a video with sound, the disclosure should be spoken or audible.
6. Be Honest. Any statement you make should be truthful, regardless of whether it is your own opinion or a characteristic of the brand. So, you may absolutely say, “Catapult Leaders is such an incredible resource to get a great job! #ad,” if you believe that it is an incredible resource. But if you don’t believe that it is, say something else.
You should never make claims that aren’t true, even if they are not opinions – DO NOT dare say something like “Registering at Catapult Leaders guarantees employment in 6 months! #ad”.
Also, be yourself in your posts – don’t impersonate anyone or anything else.
1. BUT – If you feel a product actually has provided some benefit, like you became employed after spending time at Catapult Leaders, for example, do not post that kind of claim without clearing your language with us first. Even though your claim might be true, it might not be for other people.
2. When in Doubt, Check in With Us. Please contact us if you have any questions regarding specific disclosure language. Our legal team can help with the really tricky stuff.
If you have any questions about any part of this policy, please email us at Candidates [at] CatapultLeaders.com.