Branded Content Ads: Promoting Influencer Posts on Instagram

screenshot instagram influencer wearing workout clothing

Instagram just announced an important update to their platform, the addition of Branded Content Ads. While the name may not be that intuitive, it’s an exciting update to brands and marketers that leverage influencers as a part of their digital strategy. Instagram’s Branded Content Ads will allow brands to promote an influencer’s sponsored post to larger audiences to maximize their reach, engagement and drive ROI. Exciting, right?!

What are Branded Content Ads?

We’ve all seen Infuencer posts in our feed, right? You may have seen some that use the Branded Content Tool, which lists “Paid Partnership with {@BrandHandle}”. This allows the influencer or creator to clearly show that their post is a paid partnership, and was a nice addition to help regulate the Wild West of influencer marketing.

female instagram influencer in front of Volvo SUVSource: Instagram Info Center via @songofstyle

Well, we’re now seeing the second iteration of Branded Content – Branded Content Ads! While the reach of an influencer post allows your brand to introduce itself in a native, engaging manner to strategic audiences – we’ve all selfishly wanted to extend that reach, and get that content in front of larger audiences. Enter, Branded Content Ads.

Instagram’s newest announcement allows brands to put ad spend behind those influencer posts, adding authenticity to your paid social strategy and extending the reach of that influencer post to larger audiences. That organic influencer post can now be a paid ad that appears in the newsfeed of targeted users.

How do Branded Content Ads Work?

While there had been workarounds in the past that allowed brands to promote an influencer’s post as an ad, this update makes the process simple and seamless. You can see Instagram’s Branded Content Ads page for the specifics, but in short:

  1. On your brand Instagram profile, turn on Branded Content Approvals
  2. Have your influencer Tag Business Partner when creating their content, tagging your brand’s Instagram handle
  3. Have the influencer opt to Allow Business Partner to Promote
  4. On your brand Instagram profile, go to Branded Content and Approve Account
  5. Create your Ad Campaign, set up your targeting and access the Influencer Post as your creative by navigating to Use Existing Post – Select/Change Post – Select Post – Branded Content
  6. Voila, your influencer post is now an ad!

What do Branded Content Ads Mean for Brands?

In short, the lifespan, reach and effectiveness of influencer partnerships just increased exponentially. You can now create ads that position your product natively through the profile of an influential creator – all while appearing in your target audiences Newsfeed, not just to a small percentage of your influencer partner’s followers.

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