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Episode 134: Want To Be A Travel Influencer? Here’s How To NOT Get Sued… with Guest Lauren Wolfe, Esq.
Is your dream job ‘travel influencer’? I don’t blame you! There’s something magical about the thought of traveling to the world’s most beautiful destinations, snapping awe-inspiring photos, and sharing your experiences with tens of thousands of fans.
As with any career, there are laws and regulations in place even in the influencing space that you should be aware of before you pack your suitcase. In fact, a travel influencer was sued this spring for saying she was the first woman to travel to every country online (along with many other issues).
In this episode, Lauren Wolfe joins me to dig into this lawsuit, explain what happened, and go over why influencers need to be compliant when it comes to posting on social media.
Meet Lauren Wolfe
Lauren Wolfe is Counsel at Travelers United, a consumer advocacy group focused on travel based in Washington, DC. When not doing consumer advocacy work, Lauren loves travel, running marathons very slowly and biking around town. She's been to over 100 countries and hopes to one day visit them all.
As Counsel for Travelers United, Lauren brought the first non-profit case against an influencer for deceptive advertising and she's also the lead - and only - attorney against an army of corporate attorneys in Travelers United's suit against MGM Resorts International and their use of hotel resort fees.
The Three BIG Issues With Travel Influencing Today
When researching this case, Lauren found there are three big issues with travel influencing today.
Lack of clarity about what is a sponsored post.
Reviews by travel influencers that are not marked as paid reviews and
False biographical info to make themselves seem cooler to get more fans.
The influencer that was sued had all three issues along with making up sponsorships she didn’t actually have. When it comes to the legal side of influencer marketing, problems arise when influencers start promoting products, putting up affiliate links for products, or directly selling to consumers via social media or their own website and they make false claims while selling those goods.
More From This Episode
Press play on Episode 134 and you’ll hear:
The nitty gritty of the lawsuit,
Lauren’s advice for influencers to make sure they are staying within FTC guidelines,
Why influencers need to be aware of their individual state’s regulations, what rules international influencers need to follow with audiences that span the globe, and much more!
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