Media and Marketing Insurance

Media and Marketing Insurance

From independent media consultants to digital advertising agencies, media and marketing insurance provides financial coverage for industry professionals from third-party liability lawsuits.

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Insurance for media and marketing professionals

In our fast-paced online media and marketing world, you understand the importance of meeting the timelines of your projects. Despite how meticulous you are in your work, errors or mistakes can happen. When they do, you may be held legally responsible for any negligent actions or errors that cause one of your customers to suffer financial losses or damages.  Digital marketers, new media professionals, and media and marketing consultants should consider getting marketing liability insurance coverage.

Unlike many other businesses that sell physical goods or services, media and marketing companies and independent consultants generate ideas, images, stories, and concepts offline and online for their customers. They strive to convey their customers’ core messages, thought leadership content, or convey a personal feeling to their targeted audiences.

As such, Canadian media and marketing professionals face many different risks, for example, third-party injuries or property damage lawsuits, and risks related to the services and advice they provide to their clients. Media and marketing insurance is a comprehensive package featuring different types of coverages designed to protect professionals in this industry, including:

A customized media and marketing insurance policy may feature several types of coverage, including:

  • Errors and Omissions (E&O) Insurance: Also known as professional liability insurance, E&O coverage provides financial protection from losses due to negligence, errors, or failure to deliver a service. It protects you against costs associated with lawsuits that may threaten the survival of your business and severely damage your reputation if you are sued by one of your customers.
  • Commercial General Liability (CGL) Insurance: CGL insurance is crucial for any business that has customers, business partners, or visitors such as a delivery person visiting your office. Also known as slip-and-fall insurance, it covers you from third-party bodily injuries or property damage should a customer or employee visit your office and suffer an injury on your property. For example, if you are sued for bodily injury damages by an injured visitor to your office, the cost of that lawsuit could be so expensive it may bankrupt your business. That’s why CGL coverage is vital: it provides you with coverage to defend yourself in court, any court-ordered settlement, and it pays for the injured party’s medical expenses.

Common risks that media and marketing professionals face include:

    • Missed campaign deadlines
    • Publishing errors
    • Copyright infringement
    • Plagiarism
  • Cyber Liability Insurance: If your firm’s computer systems are hacked or if an accidental data breach occurs, you could be sued for third-party damages by your customers. After all, it is your legal responsibility to safeguard your customers’ privacy, personal information, and financial data. Cyber liability coverage includes financial protection for the cost to repair your computing systems, losses due to a computing systems outage, legal advice, notifying your customers of a cyber-attack or data breach, and providing affected parties with credit monitoring services.

Additional coverages to consider:

  • Directors and Officers (D&O) Insurance: Also known as management liability insurance, D&O liability coverage is designed to protect directors and officers of marketing or media companies whether public or private from related to losses, indemnification, employee wrongful dismissal or discrimination claims and inaccurate disclosures. If you are held liable for allegations arising from breach of common law duties or fiduciary responsibilities to shareholders, negligence, or violations of provincial or federal laws, D&O coverage pays for your legal defence expenses.
  • Legal Expense Insurance: As its name suggests, legal expense insurance provides you with financial support to retain legal counsel and get legal advice on a set of common business topics with an experienced lawyer.

The cost of a basic or standard media and marketing insurance policy is determined by insurance companies, and your premium is based on a multitude of factors, including:

  • The industries and clients you serve and how many clients you have
  • Your business’s size and location
  • The type of services you provide
  • How many employees are on your team (if applicable)
  • Years of experience
  • Your annual and projected revenues
  • Your history of insurance claims

Most media and marketing professionals or firms purchase policies with between $2 million and $5 million of general liability coverage. What the appropriate level of coverage is for your business also depends on who your clients are, the value of the work you do for them, and the potential costs of litigation. Speak with one of our licensed brokers about the liability risks you face to determine what the right level of coverage is for you.

Mitigating the risks you face and keeping your annual premium low requires being proactive and taking action to minimize the chances of being sued. Though your risk management efforts may not prevent you from being subject to a third-party lawsuit, they can help reduce that threat and serve as proof in your legal defence that you did your due diligence to avoid such a situation. Here are a few steps you can take to do so:

  • Open and transparent communication: Never underestimate the value of honest and regular communication with your customers. It’s essential to ensure your customers and employees or partners clearly understand their responsibilities, the costs associated with the work, and the deadlines.
  • Maintain accurate records: Keep records of every conversation, meeting, chat, and email exchange between yourself and your customers. Regularly provide follow-up emails or written accounts of what was discussed, when, and what was agreed to so all concerned have documented insight into the project’s scope, the agreements made, or requests for changes to a project.
  • Customer approvals: Always give your customers enough time to review any materials you create or provide to them. Ensure they approve of each step in a project by signing off on them and especially near or at the conclusion of a project.
  • Ensure quality control: During and after every project, ensure you have at least two experienced professionals or colleagues thoroughly review all work before sending it to your customer or going public with the material. Have procedures to document who reviewed what and when and ensure any recommended changes are implemented.

Getting insured is quick and easy!

Complete our 5-minute online application for a free marketing liability insurance quote.

Common claims scenarios

content writer

Problem: A content writer is hired to produce copy for a customer’s website. The new website is launched publicly online, but afterward, the customer says a significant portion of the content you wrote is incorrect. The customer claims you erred and did not follow their instructions, and they sue you for negligence.

Outcome: Your writer’s errors and omissions insurance policy may pay for the cost to defend yourself in court as well as any judgement made against you by the court.

publication book

Problem: A publishing company uses images in one of its publications. It is later discovered that these images were from a popular book and the publisher failed to get the book author’s permission to use the images. The book’s author and publisher sue your company for copyright infringement.

Outcome: Your publisher’s professional liability coverage may cover your legal expenses as well as any court-ordered settlement against you.

magazine error

Problem: An advertisement printer makes an error while printing a magazine which causes an ad to be placed upside down in the final version of the publication. The magazine publisher sues you for damages and demands a refund for the printing and advertising costs.

Outcome: Your advertiser’s E&O coverage may pay for your legal defence and any settlement rendered by the court that you are responsible to provide.

Frequently asked questions

Is there coverage available for protection from breach of contract?

Yes. If you miss a client deadline and fail to deliver a project on time, which causes your client to delay the public release of the project that results in a financial loss, E&O coverage can protect you from any lawsuits or damages the client suffers.

Is legal expense insurance included in a standard media and marketing insurance policy?

No, but you can add legal expense coverage to create a comprehensive media and marketing insurance policy. Legal expense coverage provides you with financial support to consult a lawyer for advice related to your business. Standalone legal expense policies may start at $200 a year, but you may be able to get a discount if you bundle it with other policies, such as commercial general liability and E&O insurance.

What are the most common risks that media and marketing professionals face?

The most common risks that professionals in the media and marketing industry face are lawsuits that arise from copyright infringement, plagiarism, defamation, and invasion of privacy.

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