Before starting work for any client, you need to send them a contract for them to review and sign.

You can either buy ready-made contracts online or you can take the time to create your own that caters to your specific business.

Below are the steps to take to create a social media management contract that will impress your clients.

9 Steps to Create a Client Contract for Social Media Management

A Client Contract is among the most important contracts between social media managers and their clients.

It involves a lot of different elements, each of which plays a crucial role in ensuring a fair and productive relationship between you and your client.

The Client Contract will spell out the following:

  • The services you provide
  • The costs to your client
  • The time it will take to complete the work
  • Which party pays for expenses
  • Payment terms
  • A clause outlining who owns the work created by you
  • Liabilities
  • Terminating the relationship early
  • …and much more!

A client contract specifically outlines the items above and more as a way to protect both you and your client.

Let’s take a closer look at each of the sections of the contract in detail:

1. The Parties in the Agreement


This is a mandatory section to include in your client contract. In it, you must state who the contract is between.

This includes:

  • Names
  • Titles
  • Addresses (if appropriate)
  • Date of the contract, etc.

You can also state what names you will use to refer to the people from then on.

For example:

This social media management agreement (referred to herein as “agreement”) is made on (date), between (full name of social media management consultant) whose address is referred to herein as “Consultant”, and________, referred to herein as “Client”.

2. The Work You Will Provide


In this section, you can list the exact scope of the work to be provided by you.

Include all the responsibilities of the social media manager as well as what the clients may be responsible for.

For example, if you will be posting to different websites as part of your management duties, list the exact number of times you will post (per day all week).

Be sure to mention which sites you will post on, and include an exact description of any other activities you will be responsible for.

This section will be particularly useful for you because unless you have a clear list of the tasks incorporated with your work, you might experience “scope creep” where clients tack on additional duties that were not agreed to at the beginning.

This can happen very often when clients begin asking for other services like having you be a copywriter on their website to compliment the social media platforms, copy editor, ad management, etc.

This section of your client contract should also include all the things you may need from the client, such as images, approval of posts, etc.

Outline how these items are to be delivered and when they are needed by.

3.Fees and Expenses

In this part of the contract, state exactly how much your work costs, when the payment is due, and how you’re willing to accept payment, specifically if you’ll accept credit card payments and who will pay the fees associated with this payment method.

Some social media managers require 50% upfront each month, the balance to be paid at the end of each month. Others require full payment for the month upfront.

You can decide what will work best for you and your clients.

But, make sure you have a reliable invoicing system (Freshbooks is a great option). Alternatively, you need a way to take payments automatically whenever possible in order to avoid late payments for any ongoing work.

You also need to clearly state what happens when payments are late.

For instance, you might specify that if a client is two weeks behind, work stops until you have received the payment.

If there are any extra fees for travel costs, special reporting tools, stock images, or any other things that aren’t covered by the quote, make sure you outline those prices.

Although you might have a reason to separate prices, it’s typically best to incorporate everything that you will be using in your social media management fee.

4. Contract Timeline and Termination Provision

This section includes the dates covered by the contract.

Be sure to specify if the contact is month-to-month or open-ended.

Spell out what has to happen for a party on either end to cancel the contract. For instance, you might make it clear that you require a minimum of 30 days written notice before termination.

5. Ownership of Work

Your contract must state exactly who owns the work created by you.

Typically, the company retains the right to all the work done.

But, if you happen to have a proprietary method involved in your social media management work, be sure to make it clear that it’s your method.

If you’re undertaking any type of consulting where you’re not just providing services but also educating your clients, make sure it’s noted that you own training materials and online courses if you’re providing them.

6. Confidentiality


Make sure you include a statement attesting to the fact that you’ll keep the company’s information confidential unless written permission is obtained.

You can word it in a fashion similar to this:

The consultant will maintain confidentiality on all the company’s information, including business plans, financial information, analytics, etc. regardless of whether or not the information was designated as “confidential” at the time of disclosure.

7. Mediation and Jurisdiction


This is a clause that shows where the jurisdiction will be handled for any disputes pertaining to the contract.

Although this may sound like something you will never need, if you do somehow find yourself in such a situation, you will be glad your contract spells out the course of action.

You might word it as follows:

Any disputes or controversy relating to or arising out of this agreement’s formation, performance, and termination will be promptly resolved by the parties involved.

In the event of failure to reach an amicable settlement, the dispute will then be submitted to binding arbitration to be held in_________.

8. Guarantee


This is a tricky part because it’s hard to guarantee results in a business like this one where there are so many aspects that you don’t have control over as a social media manager.

This includes things like:

The client’s website and blog
Their products
The client’s sales funnel
Prior brand reputation
…and more.

However, you might state that you don’t guarantee explicit results and that you only estimate.

9. Date and Signature

Leave some space at the bottom where you and the client will sign the contract.

If there are multiple pages to your contract, make sure each page is numbered and that it’s evident nothing is left out.

It’s a good idea to leave space for initials on each of the pages.

By the way, your client doesn’t have to print the contract, sign it and upload it again. Do your client a favor and suggest using one of the available free online signature tools (such as Signaturely).
Client Contract Templates
Here are a few free templates to help you create your own social media management agreement.

These will make things a lot easier for you (and save you a ton of cash).

Looking to streamline your social media and client approval process?

Schedule a 30 minute demo with the HeyOrca team to learn about all the ways HeyOrca can help you save time, fight burnout, and build client trust.

Book a 1-on-1 Demo

Client Contract Templates

Here are a few free templates to help you create your own social media management agreement. 

These will make things a lot easier for you (and save you a ton of cash).

1. Wonder.Legal

Source

2. Template.net

Social Media Manager Contract

Source

3. Rocket Lawyer

Source

Paid Templates: Social Studio ($20)

Social Studio also has a great social media client contract that is simple and easy to use. 

Simply download and send it to clients who are ready to work with you. 

Social Media Manager Contract

Source

Other Contracts Every Social Media Manager Needs

In addition to a social media management contract, you can also have a contract for independent contractors, as well as an NDA (non-disclosure agreement) for when you hire people to work in your business. 

Independent Contractor

If you plan to expand your business as a social media manager, this is a contract that you will definitely need.

This template outlines the following:

  • The services you provide
  • A payment plan with suggested dates
  • A late fee clause for missed payments
  • Confidentiality clause that protects your trade secrets
  • The owner of the intellectual property created by you
  • A disclaimer and release

This contract should be sent to new hires as soon as they are ready to work and will help you cover your business assets from the very beginning.

NDA (Non-Disclosure Agreement)

This type of contract is designed to protect your ideas as well as the details of work. 

You can use it when hiring or starting a new partnership. Signing an NDA means that both parties are mutually agreeing to never share any of the details of their work. 

This is particularly important for social media managers since working with clients often includes handling confidential information such as:

  • Social media account passwords
  • Accounting information
  • Presented ideas

…and much more.

This agreement also comes in handy when you hire independent contractors for your social media management business, such as videographers, graphic designers, assistance, etc.

Conclusion

Social media managers have to take the time to protect themselves and their clients through the use of written contracts. 

Not all short-term consultations need to have contracts (these can be covered by a Terms and Conditions page on your website that outlines how you work). 

However, a contract is essential for longer engagements or work that is more involved. 

Follow the steps outlined in this article to create a social media management contract with all the essential elements.

Did this article answer your questions on how to create a social media management contract that will impress your clients? Share your thoughts below!

Author bio:

This post was collaboratively created by HeyOrca & Ron Stefanski.

Ron is the founder of One Hour Professor

Looking to streamline your social media and client approval process?

Schedule a 30 minute demo with the HeyOrca team to learn about all the ways HeyOrca can help you save time, fight burnout, and build client trust.

Book a 1-on-1 Demo
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