According to recent reports, Instagram is currently developing and testing a standardized format. This addition should make it obvious for everyone when an advertiser has paid for a certain post. The feature is not meant for ads which businesses buy from the company. It’s rather for influencers like celebrities or people with massive follower bases which brands pay to promote certain products. It’s also interesting that more and more tech companies have become interested in this area. However, it can become questionable when it comes to transparency and disclosure.
Discovering which posts are paid for
The Federal Trade Commission has recently sent some letters to over 90 online influencers. In these letters, they are reminding them that they have to obligation to reveal when an advertiser has paid them for a certain post. This also means that they should do this clearly, not hide the name of the sponsor under the More tag. Also, to not use ambiguous phrases in which they thank the sponsor like they would with a friend.
Instagram’s Creative Programs Director Charles Porch said that people have begun developing some amazing business on their platform. Also, that most of them are looking to be completely transparent when it comes to the paid posts problem. Advertisers are on the same boat too. So, what this new feature does is that it allows influencers and celebrities to tag their sponsor in their photos or videos.
It’s all about transparency
When influencers are doing this, their sponsored posts will have a “paid partnership with” notification at the top. It’s interesting that this can also show up on InstaStories. It will not be a big and flashy banner which tells everyone that the post was sponsored. However, the tag uses a clear language and everybody should understand what it’s all about. Also, the sponsor will gain access to all the stats of that post, just like the influencer. They will know the engagement rate and the reach. Also, this will appear in their dashboard, just like the rest of their advertising info.
At the moment, Instagram is still testing this feature with a few important users. However, it’s all in the beginning phase and the company’s main goal is to educate people.
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