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3 Ways Facebook’s Creator Amplification Tool Will Change Influencer Marketing

Marketing

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The company is rolling out a feature that allows advertisers to promote third-party influencer content.

Facebook is rolling out a new feature that allows brands to promote third-party influencer content in the feed—a move that experts say is likely to give influencer marketing as we know it a higher price tag.

Influencer marketing has become a mainstream strategy from driving earned media via trusted experts within niche categories like beauty, fitness, and food. One study found that as high as 86 percent of marketers are utilizing it, with half of them planning to up their investment year-over-year.

At the surface, the update will allow brands to extend the benefits their influencer partnerships to targeted audiences at scale. Instead of simply reaching the influencer’s following, for example, they can boost the content to new and different audiences to their liking.

How does it work? Pretty easily, actually. A creator writes a post, tags the page using the branded content tool, and checks a permission box signifying the advertiser can promote the post. The creator can then share the content, by clicking “Boost Post,” as it appears on their Page.

It’s up to advertisers to boost the content and they’ll have the authority to hand-pick and authorize who can tag them, to protect their brand from being misrepresented. Marketers will also gain access to critical specs surrounding the content such as reach, engagement, total spend, and CPM to gauge performance, which is a big deal for practitioners who have been struggling to measure the success of their influencer marketing campaigns.

Of course, this pretty much defeats the entire purpose of influencer marketing, which is to earn attention from a subject matter expert’s active and engaged audience, which that influencer has groomed and amassed around a specific and relevant topic or category.

So, what does it all mean?

  • It’s not far-fetched to assume Facebook will tweak its algorithm to make it harder for influencer content to stand out on its own, especially if that content is tagged with a brand partner. Looking back at the history of Facebook, this is exactly what happened to brands once they began to amass large audiences there.
  • Influencers could lose some leverage. Since brands can control the reach of the content with their media dollars, and if an algorithm update indeed kicks in, brands could try to negotiate influencer rates down to avoid paying double for the influencer’s content likeness as well as the media spend on top of that.
  • Having a huge audience will no longer cut it. Influencer marketing has ballooned to the point where there are plentiful opportunities for anyone with a sizable following to make a buck or two. With this update, the bar will be raised and there will be a higher premium paid for brand recognition (“celebrity” status) and/or content creation skills.

This update has sparked many questions around the future of influencer marketing on Facebook (and elsewhere). The next terrain to watch will be Instagram, which has emerged as the No. 1 channel for influencer marketing in many verticals and is, of course, owned by Facebook.

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