39 episodes

Way too often, legal is viewed as an expensive headache and business owners either avoid it or don't completely understand it. The goal of the Simplifying Legal podcast is break down complicated legal topics in short episodes that have specific action items for how to implement any recommendations. The podcast will give people a tool to help them take action on the areas of their business that may have been ignoring.

Simplifying Legal for Small Business Owners Danielle Liss

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 5 Ratings

Way too often, legal is viewed as an expensive headache and business owners either avoid it or don't completely understand it. The goal of the Simplifying Legal podcast is break down complicated legal topics in short episodes that have specific action items for how to implement any recommendations. The podcast will give people a tool to help them take action on the areas of their business that may have been ignoring.

    039: Affiliate Marketing

    039: Affiliate Marketing

    Affiliate marketing is one of the most popular streams of income online for both affiliates and companies. You see it everywhere in social media posts, blogs, videos, emails, and even books.
    Affiliate programs provide lots of benefits. Companies that offer one get to advertise their products or services through affiliates with minimal investment or risk. They only pay when there are sales. Affiliates get a relatively simple way to earn money for promoting products or services without having to spend lots of money upfront on store inventory.
    So today, I talk all about affiliate marketing. I cover the common legal terms and conditions, commissions, and disclosures obligations in affiliate contracts from the perspective of those who run affiliate programs and those who serve as affiliates.
    Please subscribe if you haven’t already. And if you like the show, I’d love it if you’d give it a review wherever you listen to podcasts!
     
    In this episode:
    [01:34] - What is affiliate marketing?
    [02:34] - Danielle gives a great example of affiliate marketing in action and discusses the potential income affiliates can make.
    [03:37] - A cash commission is the most common payment option but not the only one. What other incentives can affiliates receive?
    [06:00] - Those who offer affiliate marketing programs should have terms and conditions. Danielle goes over each section.
    [07:13] - What if you work with affiliates on a smaller scale and don’t use software for tracking purposes?
    [08:08] - Danielle talks about affiliate obligations commonly included in program terms. These are the business’s basic expectations of the affiliate.
    [09:50] - In affiliate agreements, companies usually outline obligations and reserved rights on their end, in addition to terms regarding the termination of the agreement.
    [10:47] - How are affiliates paid? Danielle discusses common commission terms.
    [12:23] - Most companies reserve the right to modify their terms and conditions without notifying affiliates and may put some program restrictions in place.
    [13:32] - How does confidentiality play a part in being an affiliate?
    [14:19] - Danielle focuses on the other big legal issue for affiliate marketing: disclosure.
    [15:54] - Find out the next steps to take, whether you’re an affiliate or a business that offers an affiliate program.
     
    Links & Resources:
    Businessese Affiliate Program
    Affiliate Terms and Conditions
    Referral Agreement
    Businessese
    Liss Legal

    • 18 min
    038: How to Avoid Scope Creep

    038: How to Avoid Scope Creep

    What is scope creep? The term might be new for you, but you’ve probably experienced it if you’re a service-based entrepreneur. Scope creep happens when you exceed the amount of work for agreed-upon deliverables to your client without an increase in pay to match. In other words, you overdeliver in a big way but receive no commensurate compensation in return.
    How can you prevent scope creep or stop it in its tracks before it can get out of hand? In this episode, I talk about how you can avoid scope creep by crafting a scope of work that works for you. I also answer some of the most common questions I receive about scope creep.
    Please subscribe if you haven’t already. And if you like the show, I’d love it if you’d give it a review wherever you listen to podcasts!
     
    In this episode:
    [01:59] - Danielle gives an example of how a copywriter can fall into the scope creep trap.
    [03:41] - What’s the easiest solution to avoid scope creep?
    [04:17] - Danielle offers an example of how a social media manager can specify deliverables in a contract.
    [05:40] - In addition, you need to address what happens if you need to change your scope of work. Here’s a clause recommendation.
    [06:29] - Keep this in mind when setting scope-of-work expectations in your client agreement.
    [07:00] - What do your clients need to know about your deadlines?
    [07:35] - Are you better off charging hourly or a flat rate? Danielle discusses setting fees for your scope of work.
    [09:42] - Should you state upfront what isn’t included in your scope of work?
    [10:38] - How should you handle additional fees for revisions?
    [11:13] - Scope creep often starts as one small thing you’re okay with doing. Here’s how you can address it.
    [12:14] - What if you run into a client who doesn’t think they need to pay extra?
    [13:03] - Danielle wraps up the episode with today’s action steps.
     
    Links & Resources:
    Businessese
    Liss Legal

    • 14 min
    037: Legal for Social Media Managers

    037: Legal for Social Media Managers

    From specializing in Pinterest to managing accounts on several social media platforms, the role of social media manager covers a really broad range. In addition to managing some aspect of social media for other businesses, it can overlap with creative or VA business types, especially if it involves content creation for client accounts.
    Because it’s a hybrid of these other areas, I wanted to cover legal for social media managers separately. So in this last episode of the series, I review different aspects of a social media manager’s business such as selecting an entity, working with clients, and building your team.
    Please subscribe if you haven’t already. And if you like the show, I’d love it if you’d give it a review wherever you listen to podcasts!
     
    In this episode:
    [03:07] - Social media managers need to decide a business entity under which to file.
    [05:01] - As a social media manager, you must have a strong client agreement in place. Danielle recommends a few areas to address.
    [06:52] - Are you guaranteeing results in your contract? Most social media managers do this instead.
    [07:26] - Danielle discusses a hot topic among lots of social media managers: content ownership.
    [09:02] - Social media managers need to be aware of these three terms regarding content ownership in their client agreement.
    [09:54] - Danielle offers a precaution if you create branded Canva templates for your clients.
    [10:43] - You should include a few legal policies on your social media service website, if you have one.
    [12:46] - Danielle reviews trademark considerations to help protect your brand.
    [14:46] - What should you keep in mind as you hire more people and expand your team?
    [15:34] - To wrap up, Danielle reveals the action steps you should take today.
     
    Links & Resources:
    Social Media Manager Legal Guide
    Legal Templates for Social Media Managers
    Episode 31: “Website Accessibility”
    Episode 13: “Content Ownership in Contracts”
    Businessese
    Liss Legal

    • 17 min
    036: Legal for Wellness Professionals

    036: Legal for Wellness Professionals

    Are you a registered dietitian, health coach, or pharmacist consultant? Even if you aren’t, wellness professionals cover a pretty broad range, and many do business online by offering things like courses or virtual group programs.
    In this episode, I provide an overview of the legal side of business for wellness professionals. So tune in as I walk you through choosing a legal entity, shoring up your website policies, protecting your intellectual rights, expanding your team, and more.
    Please subscribe if you haven’t already. And if you like the show, I’d love it if you’d give it a review wherever you listen to podcasts!
     
    In this episode:
    [02:54] - Danielle discusses the importance of knowing the permitted scope of your wellness practice.
    [04:52] - Should a wellness professional move forward as a sole proprietor or an LLC (limited liability company)?
    [06:43] - Some states require you to create a professional entity. Verify your state laws based on the type of business and licensure you have.
    [07:28] - What should be included in a wellness practitioner’s privacy policy, at a minimum?
    [08:33] - Disclaimers are extremely important for wellness professionals. Danielle briefly touches on them, as well as terms and conditions.
    [09:47] - Client relationships are the foundation of a wellness practitioner’s business. Here are the most important areas to address in contracts.
    [10:56] - Depending on your services, you may need additional areas covered in your client agreement such as group program agreements.
    [12:24] - Danielle talks about protecting your trademarks and copyrights.
    [14:36] - As a wellness professional, you’ll need to have terms for your digital products as well.
    [14:59] - What should you keep in mind as your practice expands and you hire more team members?
    [15:38] - Danielle reveals the next action steps for wellness practitioners.
     
    Links & Resources:
    Wellness Professionals Legal Guide
    Episode 31: “Website Accessibility”
    Businessese
    Liss Legal

    • 17 min
    035: Legal for Creatives

    035: Legal for Creatives

    How do you define what a creative business is? When I talk about creative business owners, I mean someone who creates something on behalf of someone else. This could be a photographer, copywriter, content creator, etc. And like all entrepreneurs, they have legal areas to take into consideration too.
    In today’s episode, I cover the legal side of business structure, protecting your website, working with clients, content ownership, and more.
    Please subscribe if you haven’t already. And if you like the show, I’d love it if you’d give it a review wherever you listen to podcasts!
     
    In this episode:
    [02:32] - Are creative businesses better off as limited liability companies or sole proprietorships?
    [04:32] - What should you include in your creative business site’s privacy policy?
    [05:25] - Danielle discusses terms and conditions and disclaimers for creative business owners.
    [06:40] - Focus on these areas in your client agreement to ensure it has a solid foundation and will help protect your creative business.
    [07:39] - As a creative, you need to set some boundaries in place for your clients regarding content creation.
    [08:35] - Many creative businesses have master service agreements. What are they, and how do they make things easier for you?
    [09:21] - Danielle explores a vital legal area for creatives: copyright protection for your original works and how to wrangle content ownership provisions.
    [11:02] - Be aware of these three key terms in your client agreement regarding content creation.
    [12:13] - What else can you do to protect the creative business and brand you’ve built? Danielle talks about trademarks.
    [13:05] - What should you do to protect your digital products?
    [13:58] - Keep these things in mind as you hire more people to help you handle increased workloads in your creative business.
    [15:04] - Danielle wraps up the episode with your action steps for today.
     
    Links & Resources:
    Creative Business Owners Legal Guide
    Episode 31: “Website Accessibility”
    Episode 13: “Content Ownership in Contracts”
    Businessese
    Liss Legal

    • 17 min
    034: Legal for Service-based Business Owners

    034: Legal for Service-based Business Owners

    Service-based businesses cover a really broad range: from professional services, like legal, to things like educational consultants. As with any business, it’s critical to get all of your legal ducks in a row. 
    So today, it’s time to turn our attention to service-based businesses. If you provide a service, tune in as I guide you on selecting a legal entity, working with clients, hiring more people, and protecting yourself, your business, and your brand. 
    Please subscribe if you haven’t already. And if you like the show, I’d love it if you’d give it a review wherever you listen to podcasts!
     
    In this episode:
    [03:13] - Should service business owners choose to be a limited liability company (LLC) or sole proprietorship?
    [04:51] - Don’t forget to do this if you provide professional services as an LLC.
    [05:17] - Danielle makes a few recommendations for creating one of the most important documents in your business: a rock-solid client agreement.
    [06:56] - Your client agreement should evolve along with your company. If you get repeat business for different projects, transition to this type of agreement instead.
    [08:10] - What do you need to include in the privacy policy on your service-based website?
    [09:04] - Danielle discusses terms and conditions and disclaimers for service entrepreneurs.
    [10:07] - How do you protect your service-based business and brand?
    [11:43] - Although providing a service, you might eventually add digital products such as DIY templates. Here’s how to ensure the protection of these copyrighted materials.
    [12:38] - Danielle mentions a few things to keep in mind as you expand your capacity and hire more people.
    [13:51] - Follow these action steps today to protect your service-based business.
     
    Links & Resources:
    Service Business Legal Guide
    Legal Templates for Service Business Owners
    Businessese
    Liss Legal

    • 15 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
5 Ratings

5 Ratings

Kateri Gabriele ,

Perfect Preparation!

I love listening to Simplifying Legal for Small Business Owners! These short and specific episodes have done wonders for helping me understand the steps I likely should be taking in getting my business’ legal affairs in order. I recently started working with Danielle for some of our bigger projects and many of the podcast episodes have been the perfect preparation to have these conversations. Thank you for making things so understandable for non-legal small business owners!

Allison D. Jordan ,

Incredibly insightful!

Danielle Liss is incredibly insightful and has helped me navigate legal situations (which are most situations, let’s be real!) in my business.

Highly recommend any and all of her information AND her business - Businessese!

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