Branded Content is a great new feature on Instagram that was introduced to create a clearer way for Instagram users to see posts by influencers or publishers. These posts by influencers or publishers are a result of a commercial relationship with the business they are posting about.
What is branded content?
Branded content, as defined by Instagram, is content on a creator or publisher’s page that features or is influenced by a business partner for an exchange of value.
An example would be where the business partner has paid the creator or publisher to post their content. Creators and publishers tag business partners in their branded content posts creating value between the two. Certain accounts can mention a business partner when sharing their branded content which is viewed as a post in a feed or in a story. These users have a commercial relationship with the business partner. The use of this tag is to bring more transparency to Instagram. The Instagram community has led to many relationships being formed online by people all over the world and the creators of content and businesses have often teamed up to bring branded content to Instagram’s passionate communities. Thus it’s important to ensure that the community is given the opportunity to easily recognise when someone they follow is being paid to post content and with the branded content tag viewers can reliably know which content is advertorial. This level of transparency is beneficial to the followers, as well as the creators and businesses.
Who uses it?
Many businesses and influential users on Instagram have access to the branded content feature. Any influential user who has entered into an agreement or contract with a business to post sponsored content may use this feature. Influential users are Instagram users who have a high volume of followers and a high volume of likes and views on their posts. This means that lots of people are seeing their posts and reading their opinions. Businesses can boost their own posts and products by having influential users promoting them due to the high volume of exposure they will receive.
Why use it?
Using it allows for enhanced relationships between a creator and a business. With the use of Instagram’s branded content, you also gain access to insights and analytics on those posts. This allows you to successfully track the progress and performance of branded posts by seeing how many likes and comments the post has received. This can be valuable insight to a business, helping them to gauge their online image and see how well their products are being received by the community. The use of branded content can also be a useful tool in building your brand’s name, by sponsoring creators to promote your brand you are ensuring your brand’s name is seen by a much wider audience.
While branded content on Instagram may still be in the early stages, it is going to bring a new level to the content posted on Instagram. The Instagram community is going to be more aware of the relationship between creators and businesses, while the businesses and creators themselves are going to be enhancing their partnerships and be more aware of the reach of their posts.