Influencer Management Agreements: Overview

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Influencer Management Agreements: Overview

Feb 15, 2023

Our second minisode of the seventh season of “The Creative Influencer” podcast is available today for download on iTunes, Spotify, and premier platforms everywhere. In this minisode, Jon starts our in-depth discussion of influencer management agreements. He starts with an overview of the important step of hiring a manager and gives pointers and red flags to watch for when selecting a manager.


A transcript of the episode follows:

This is the second minisode of the seventh season of The Creative Influencer podcast.  Today we’re going to start our discussion of influencer management agreements. We’re starting with management contracts because an unfavorable management agreement can bind an influencer to working with that manager for several years.

The first person to join an influencer’s team is generally the manager and the agreement that I am most often asked by an influencer to help them get out of is their first management agreement. Why is that? Because too often an influencer is so happy to have a manager they don’t choose wisely.

The influencer / manager relationship, at its best, is a partnership. Not a partnership in a legal sense but a partnership in a working sense. The influencer and manager are a team and the team should share the same vision. That means they have to talk about where the influencer wants to take her career.

Does the influencer want a merchandise line? Does she want to publish a book? Does she want to travel? The groundwork should be laid at the beginning of the relationship. Did I mention that it is a relationship?

What the influencer does not want to have happen is for her career to stall due to a lack of vision. Or worse, to be taken advantage by the person they rely on the most – their manager.

What are the red flags to look out for?

Managers who don’t return calls. Managers who don’t listen. Managers who want to be in control of everything. The role of the manager is to help the influencer grow her brand. Remember this is a partnership, not a dictatorship. The talent should be in control, not the other way around. If the manager presents the management agreement on a take it or leave it basis, don’t walk away – run.

In this management agreement series, we’ll look at the typical length of management agreement. How long do they last? What is the term of the agreement? Is there a trial period? Does the agreement automatically renew? Then we’ll discuss how to end a management agreement. Can the agreement be terminated if the fit isn’t what the influencer had hoped for? Or, worse yet, what can be done if the manager isn’t doing his job?

Next, we’ll look at the scope of the representation. What does a manager do and what are they contractually obligated to do? Do they have the authority to bind an influencer to participate in a deal they don’t want to do? What is the legal relationship between the parties?

How is the manager compensated during the term of the agreement? Is the compensation limited to active income versus passive income like AdSense? What about compensation on non-cash deals. For example, what happens when an influencer is given a car to drive to Coachella?

What about compensation after the agreement is terminated? Do commissions continue on existing deals? What about commissions from deals with brands that the influencer worked with during the term but bring another deal after termination?

Next, we’ll look at confidentiality, non-disparagement and indemnification.

Finally, we’ll discuss conflict resolution. In other words, how are disputes between a manager and influencer resolved?

Hang on, we’re in for a ride.

The Creative Influencer is a weekly podcast where we discuss all things creative with an emphasis on Influencers. It is hosted by Jon Pfeiffer, an entertainment attorney in Santa Monica, California. Jon interviews influencers, creatives and the professionals who work with them.

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