Applications based on overlays have become very popular, due to the separation they provide and the improvement of perceived QoS by the end-user. Recent studies show that overlays have a significant impact on the traffic management and the expenditures of the underlying network operators. In this paper, we define a framework for Economic Traffic Management (ETM) mechanisms that optimize the traffic impact of overlay applications on ISP and telecommunication operator networks based on the interaction of network operators, overlay providers and users. We first provide a definition and an overview of Self-Organization Mechanisms (SOMs) and ETM for overlays. We then describe a basic framework for the interaction of components of SOMs and ETM, in terms of information and metrics provided, decisions made etc. Finally, we describe in detail how SOMs can be used to support ETM and we illustrate our approach and its implications by means of a specific example.