The world of social media influencer marketing mimics the platforms it resides on. It’s a high-growth space with more and more people gaining large social media followings every day.
As a result, brand deals with creators, such as discount codes, affiliate links, and sponsored posts, are continually growing in popularity.
Whilst some platforms have embraced creators and encouraged this growth with incentives, others have remained behind the curve and have potentially been missing out on an increasingly popular marketing tactic.
Tiktok is one of the youngest mainstream platforms and yet it has already launched a $200 million creator fund. YouTube, at the forefront of highlighting and promoting creators, is now offering a $100 million fund to amplify Black creators.
The social media companies lagging include Instagram and its parent company, Facebook. Instagram has even caught ire from the social media influencer community. This is due to its decision to remove the likes function and making the algorithm harder to utilise with the change to boosting reels and video content.
However, with the new tools Facebook is set to release, it seems the company is looking to support influencers to keep them and their business on the apps.
The new features aim to keep creators creating by helping influencers earn extra cash when they hit certain milestones. These milestones include selling badges within streams, going live with other accounts on Instagram, or participating in “Stars Challenges” on Facebook.
The new tools will allow influencers to:
Link their own products in-app with the possibility of earning commission directly from shopping posts.
Earn a percentage of sales from the products they share through an affiliate marketplace.
Use a new matching tool for brands and influencers.
Have ‘Creator Shops’ in their profiles – something previously exclusive to brands.
These new tools align with Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, current goal of establishing a “creator middle class,” - influencers with considerable platforms who are not yet big enough to be offered sponsorships from big-name brands.
By creating these features, creators are given monetary incentives to keep producing content, which in turn, attracts more people to join their platform and stay on their apps for longer.
Social media influencers were given their name for a reason with competition gaining new sign-ups and more advertising revenue.
There is no current timeline available for when the features will be released on the platforms.
This change in culture for Facebook and Instagram may draw some questions: how will this impact my business? Does this mean I will have to pay influencers more for the same level of content?
How will the new features impact user experience on the apps?
As the tools haven’t been rolled out yet, there is no data to truly answer these questions and only time will tell. However, this doesn’t mean we can’t speculate.
Whilst these changes can incentivise influencers, they also may make their job more difficult. Creators, and businesses as well, may soon have to create and manage several in-app stores.
This does not bode well for efficiency or aid in increasing the quality of influencer content as they may have to spend more time on account management, rather than content creation.
On the other hand, the added monetary benefits to the “creator middle class” might mean the calibre of their content can increase.
The creators who are best at generating quality leads are the ones who built a community that trusts them, rather than the one with the largest following.
Smaller influencers, or micro-influencers, can establish stronger connections with their audience as the content has more of a personal touch and intimate feeling, which social media celebrities and brands often lack.
Because of this, micro-influencers often prove to be more effective in generating desired outcomes for brands.
By increasing the funds available to the micro-influencers, businesses can promote their brand, product, or services at a lower cost by hiring a creator with higher quality content and audience.
Social media influencer marketing can be a great way to enrich your brand’s awareness and content strategy. However, it can also be difficult to stay on top of the ever-changing trends and platform algorithms.
That’s where we come in!
As part of our digital services, Stead Lane offers social media strategy, monitoring, and content creation. We can use our expert knowledge to bring your goals to fruition. Contact us today!
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