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Three Steps to Evolving the Talent Rights Playbook for Digital

Talent rights are already an important part of managing and trafficking ads, but they’re becoming even more important to monitor in today’s fast-moving digital environment. Managing talent rights was once a TV-centric job, something that could safely be left to your agency’s talent manager or business affairs team. Unfortunately, as digital advertising has evolved, talent rights have not kept up with the changes, with potentially painful and costly consequences for you and your client.

Non-compliant ads online can set your agency up for potential legal trouble, millions of dollars in fines and unexpected talent costs. Given the potential dangers of running ads online without proper rights, here are three ways those of us in the industry can ensure we don’t run into trouble:

  1. THINK MULTI-SCREEN – Our changing digital viewing habits mean there’s no longer just one screen for advertising, but many. TV ads no longer run just on TV. Oftentimes, the same TV spot will get repurposed for dozens of different uses online, ranging from digital video recuts to mobile ad campaigns, meaning there’s no telling where it might end up.

By extension, if it’s hard to keep track of where the ad is running, that means it’s even harder to know if your agency made talent payments for that specific medium and timeframe. Assume any given piece of creative will be running across multiple screens and devices until you hear otherwise, and make sure your talent teams negotiate and compensate for necessary online rights accordingly.

  1. COMMUNICATE AND BE PROACTIVE – As your agency works with more partners, publishers and ad networks, it gets harder to make sure those partners are communicating effectively about who paid for what rights. That means the TV spot you think is only running on broadcast might have been adapted and published online by a partner before you even realize it.

With these sorts of slip-ups becoming more common, you need to develop a workflow and communication process to prevent it. Work with your peers at partner agencies to develop a process in advance that confirms talent rights for any adapted creative. 

  1. SWITCH FROM MANUAL TO AUTOMATED TRACKING –The pace of today’s ad placements has increased dramatically. It’s gotten to the point where many spots are uploaded and served to viewers automatically with little oversight. Not to mention there are literally millions of places online where an ad might run. With this much automation happening with trafficking, doesn’t it make sense that automated tracking of talent rights should happen too?

Interested in a solution that takes the guesswork out of managing compliance? Our TRUST Tag™ enables automatic tracking of video creative and reports back in real-time. Plus, it’s free!