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A social media management contract refers to a legal agreement signed between a social media management professional or company and their clients in the U.S. This particular contract also outlines the terms of the specific working relationship. This often includes the services provided, the payment terms, the length of the agreement, and other important details. It proves to be helpful because this is how the scope of work for the social media manager and the team is determined.

Note: To learn more about a social media management contract, watch this video.

Steps to Create a Social Media Management Contract

Creating a social media management contract alone won't make everyone successful in their endeavor. They must conduct deep digging and use many resources to develop one effectively. The steps associated with the same include:

  1. Define the Scope of Work. Eligible parties should define the field of work of the social media manager and the kind of products the latter will offer over time.
  2. Determine the Timeline. This includes determining the extent of the social media management contract and allowing any other deadlines for specific deliverables.
  3. Agree on Payment Terms. All parties shall discuss the payment schedule and all other financial terms in detail to avoid any untimely legal obstacles in the future.
  4. Establish Intellectual Property Ownership. This creates the structure that assigns the social media accounts to their owners and the content created for them.
  5. Review and Sign the Contract. Both parties should further review and sign the social media management contract to ensure they understand and agree to its associated terms and conditions.

Benefits of a Social Media Management Contract

Social media management contracts are often considered essential business tools. This is specifically for social media consultants and managers. Why? Here are the reasons:

  • Protecting a Business: Social media is unpredictable, which can be good for a business. Yet, It can also be harmful in situations where a particular client may be insulted, mocked, or even suffer in other unpredictable ways. A social media management contract can protect your business from such situations. For example, you can use the contract to reduce your liability in such cases.
  • Managing Client Expectations: Several clients probably do not understand social media to the same extent as a social media manager. The downside is that the same client may have unrealistic expectations for what they can actually achieve on social media. For instance, a particular client might say that they want a video to go viral on YouTube and get around 1 million views in 30 days with a small budget. Hence, a social media management contract helps keep client expectations under control. The parties can also define what they will do and what is beyond their control in the same agreement.
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Important Elements of a Social Media Management Contract

A social media management contract must define the roles and responsibilities of all the associated parties. It must also outline the terms of the same agreement. So, the elements include:

  • Scope of Work: This particular section should outline the tasks that the social media manager will be doing eventually. This involves creating and scheduling posts, monitoring comments and messages, and even analyzing metrics.
  • Deliverables: The agreement should contain deliverable presentations outlined by the social media officer. This comprises the monthly dashboards, content calendar, and social media strategy recommendations.
  • Timeline: The contract dates need to be mentioned in this part along with the starting (beginning) and the finishing dates. It could contain particular deadlines for specific deliverables as well.
  • Payment Terms: This particular part should provide the payment schedule for the contract for social media management. It can also involve various other financial words, such as late payment penalties, fees, and other costs.
  • Intellectual Property: It should indicate both of the social media personalities (content creator and social media manager) who are usually the owners of all the social media accounts and any content created for the purpose they serve.
  • Confidentiality: This part must be a privacy agreement. The social media manager is restricted from divulging any of the confidential info regarding the business or its clients.
  • Termination: This part would enumerate the reasons that either of the parties might opt to break the social media management contract.

Consequences of Not Having a Social Media Management Contract

Not having a social media management contract in place can have negative consequences. The same also applies to the act of violating the terms of the same contract by the parties associated with it. Here is a sneak peek:

For a Business or Organization For a Social Media Manager
Loss of Control: The business may not have control over its respective social media accounts. This also applies to the content branding of the same business. This restriction can often lead to confusion, inconsistency, and even damage to the same business’s reputation. Loss of Credibility: There is a chance that the social media manager may violate the terms of the social media management department in the company. This can lead to a loss of credibility and damage to the reputation of the same business.
Legal Liabilities: The business may be held liable for any resulting damages or penalties if a social media manager violates privacy laws or intellectual property rights because of the absence of a contract. Legal Liabilities: The social media manager may also be held liable for any kind of damages or penalties. This usually results from a breach of rules, such as copyright infringement or privacy violations.
Financial Loss: A social media manager may not deliver the expected results in the absence of a contract, which can result in a waste of money, time, and resources. Loss of Income: The social media manager may also lose the income they would have received for the remainder of the social media management contract if the latter is not in place or renewed for the next term.

Key Terms for Social Media Management Contracts

  • Parties: The interested individuals or entities that want to sign the social media management contract. It usually includes the social media manager, too.
  • Scope of Work: The tasks and activities to be conducted by the social media manager during their respective tenure as a part of the contract.
  • Confidentiality: The state of keeping something secret or private. This particular clause is commonly added to a social media management contract.
  • Intellectual Property: A set of intangible assets that are usually owned by a business or company.
  • Dispute Resolution: The process that usually involves resolving any kind of dispute or conflict between different parties.

Final Thoughts on Social Media Management Contracts

Not having a social media management contract in place can have serious consequences for both parties involved. The same applies to certain cases where someone violates its associated terms. That is why either party must take sufficient time to create a comprehensive social media management contract. This particular agreement outlines the roles and responsibilities of both parties and even protects their interests. This means it is also important to ensure that the same contract is legally enforceable and complies with all relevant laws and regulations. Either party can seek help from a professional lawyer for this purpose.

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ContractsCounsel is not a law firm, and this post should not be considered and does not contain legal advice. To ensure the information and advice in this post are correct, sufficient, and appropriate for your situation, please consult a licensed attorney. Also, using or accessing ContractsCounsel's site does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and ContractsCounsel.


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