Contracting with a Media Buyer

You see, I had met this client through friends at church.  At the time, she was distraught about how badly they needed Facebook ads for their new location (I won’t use any names just in case you know them).  

They were a family run business that had done very well with one location and now had expanded to a second location.  

Everything started out hunky dory - I would make myself available for their calls, they had a gazillion questions about bills they were receiving from a plethora of internet marketing services and I would patiently explain everything to them.  

The word ‘lost’ is an understatement.  For example, they were stunned to learn they were paying for two email service providers, yet had no access to either account.  

I began to champion them against the so-called ‘evil’ internet marketers, spending more time to assist them.  

Then, the payments for my services were delayed with an untold variety of explanations.  It was everything from ‘I’m working on that locations’ bills next week’ to personal stories about being out on their boat or spending the weekend at an ice skating competition with their kids.  

Consternated, I sent gentle reminders at first. The situation didn’t improve.  In fact, it got worse!

One response was ‘I can’t do this now, I’m working remotely today.’  WHAAATTT???

After three weeks of asking for payment, I referenced the Late Fee clause in the Agreement.  I had payment within two days.  

I don’t recommend working with clients who are this confused.  In fact, this client and I have gone our separate ways.  

media buying, ai for graphics, ai for content, ai for marketing

I share this with you so that you can benefit from a sticky situation. 

And, I put together some key components that should be included in the contract.

Here they are:

Scope of Work: Define the scope of work explicitly, detailing the specific services the media buyer will provide. This can include media planning, campaign execution, budget allocation, reporting, and any additional services agreed upon.

Duration and Termination: Specify the duration of the contract, including the start and end dates. Also, outline the terms and conditions for termination, such as notice periods, reasons for termination, and any associated penalties or obligations.

Compensation and Payment Terms: Clearly state the compensation structure and payment terms agreed upon. This can include details about the media buyer's fee, payment schedule, and any additional costs such as media placement fees or production expenses.

Confidentiality and Non-Disclosure: Protect sensitive business information by including confidentiality and non-disclosure clauses. This ensures that the media buyer handles your data and strategies with the utmost confidentiality and prohibits them from sharing any proprietary information with third parties.

Performance Metrics and Reporting: Define the key performance indicators (KPIs) and metrics that will be used to measure the success of the media buying campaigns. Specify the frequency and format of performance reporting, ensuring that you receive regular updates on campaign progress, results, and any necessary adjustments.

Ownership of Creative Assets: Clearly state who will own the creative assets developed during the partnership. This can include ad copy, visuals, videos, or any other materials created specifically for your campaigns. Determine whether you will have exclusive ownership or if the media buyer retains any rights to reuse or repurpose the assets.

Legal Compliance: Ensure that the contract includes clauses stating that the media buyer will adhere to all relevant laws, regulations, and industry standards. This includes compliance with advertising guidelines, data protection laws, and any other legal requirements specific to your business or industry.

Dispute Resolution: Include a clause that outlines the process for resolving any disputes or conflicts that may arise during the partnership. This can include negotiation, mediation, or arbitration procedures to facilitate fair and efficient resolution.

Indemnification: Define the indemnification obligations of both parties, specifying the responsibilities for any damages, losses, or legal claims resulting from actions or omissions related to the media buying activities.

Contract Renewal and Amendments: If there is a possibility of contract renewal or amendments, include provisions outlining the terms and conditions for such occurrences. This ensures transparency and clarity in case the partnership evolves or extends beyond the initial contract period.

It's essential to consult with a legal professional experienced in advertising and media contracts to ensure the contract meets your specific needs and protects your business interests. A well-drafted contract provides a solid foundation for a successful partnership with your media buyer, fostering transparency, accountability, and mutual understanding throughout the collaboration.

In establishing a contract with a media buyer is a crucial step in building a successful working relationship. By addressing the scope of work, compensation, confidentiality, performance metrics, and other essential aspects in the contract, you can ensure a smooth and transparent partnership. Take the time to carefully review and negotiate the contract terms to protect your business interests and set the stage for a fruitful collaboration with your media buyer.

If you have questions about this article, media buying or using AI in your business, please feel free to reach out to me at