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‘A symbiotic relationship’: Why social media platforms are getting in front of the growing creator …

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Social media platforms are betting big on creators, rolling out programs to streamline dealmaking between creators and advertisers. It’s a move that could keep creators, advertisers and ad dollars circulating within the platform ecosystem.

Platforms like Clubhouse and Instagram have announced new creator programs complete with funding, programming and matchmaking-style features for creators and advertisers. The latter is similar to what an influencer marketing agency does. 

Marketers say the initiatives could streamline the influencer, advertiser relationship, and expand platform ad offerings. Jordan Fox, who serves as head of the full-service agency Laundry Service, is especially keen on TikTok’s work with creators.

“[TikTok] in a really great position to upsell influencer partnerships because they’re already doing business with advertisers directly, and they have proprietary access to their own pool,” he said. “I feel like they’ve packaged influencer selection services into their overall offering in a very skillful and effective way.”

Just last week, Instagram launched its first Creator Week in a bid to capitalize on the growing creator economy. The three-day streamed event included panels, competitions and sessions with platform executives. Instagram is the latest platform attempting to woo and court creators. 

And earlier this month, live audio social app Clubhouse welcomed its inaugural Creator First class, offering equipment, a stipend of $5,000 per month, per show and guidance from Clubhouse leadership. TikTok too threw its hat in the ring last year after introducing its $200M TikTok Creator Fund and even a three month creator incubator program for Black creatives. Snapchat and YouTube have similar programs in place. 

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According to marketers, these are just the latest iterations of the platforms’ push to build out creator-friendly ecosystems, keeping pace with brands that are moving influencer marketing into a core strategy. 

“There are more potential monetization opportunities than ever before for creators, and that’s because they’ve proven over the last few years that they are driving business for brands and platforms alike,” said Victoria Bachan, managing director of influencer marketing agency Whalar’s creator management division, Whalar Talent. 

The programs are a natural extension of dealmaking that was already happening on the platforms as many had links to Venmo, Cash App and others in their bios, per Stephanie Simon, head of community, creators and partnerships at Clubhouse. 

“What we’re doing is laying the groundwork for what a relationship and what the marketplace between creators and brands and talent will look like,” she said. “It’s not about just making lump sums of cash. It’s about sustaining or evening out what a career as a creator can mean.”

Per Simon, what’s interesting about Clubhouse’s offering is that the platform offers a monthly stipend and facilitates dealmaking without taking a portion of creator earnings. It differs from TikTok’s Creator Fund, in which funds are dolled out based on video performance and other factors, per TikTok’s blog. According to tech news outlet The Information, Instagram has yet to explore an official creator fund in addition to Creator Week.

However, not all creators are leaning into these programs.

Recently, full-time influencer Justina Sharp opted out of TikTok’s creator fund. With the push to build creator ecosystems, she’s worried about the platforms positioning themselves to take a cut of creator earnings. For a post with more than 5 million views, Sharpe said she made just $36 via the TikTok creator fund and questions how payment is determined. It’s unclear how TikTok determines rates aside from video views, which has been critiqued in addition to its mysterious algorithm. (TikTok did not respond to Digiday’s request for comment.)

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With more than 10 years of experience in the influencer space, Sharp said she’d rather continue to do dealmaking with brands herself, setting her own rate. 

“That’s just you trying to edge between me and the money I’m making off of this platform,” she said. 

Cypress Villaflores, associate director of paid social at Mediahub, noted similar worries about TikTok’s program, but said creator funds, like the offerings of Instagram and Clubhouse, generally offer a steady stream of income for creators and user engagement for the platform. Seemingly, it’s a win-win. 

“Technically, it’s like a symbiotic relationship,” Villaflores said. “[Creators] bring people to the platform. It increases my monthly users, increases my daily users and [advertisers] give you money for doing that.” 

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5 apps for scheduling Instagram posts on iPhone and Android

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Alright, we get it. You’re an Instagram Nostradamus.

You know exactly what you want to post and when you’re gonna want to post it. Maybe there’s a meme or comment you want to make that you know will be totally relevant for a future moment or event. Or it could be that you’re an influencer and you want to make sure you keep a steady stream of content coming, so you want to schedule posts for times when you know you won’t be active (or won’t have internet access).

You’ll be happy to know there are apps that are specialized for just such situations. So listen up, InstaNostradamuses…Instagrostra…Instadam…Insta…uh…you guys (we’ll workshop it. No we won’t. We’ll probably just abandon that effort completely. You’re welcome) — these are the Instagram-post-scheduling apps for you.

While all of the iPhone apps below are free to download, they all have some in-app purchases.

1. Planoly

PLANOLY

We’ll start with “official partner” of Instagram, itself, Planoly — an Instaplanner that uses a grid to let you plan, schedule, and publish posts (as well as Reels) on Instagram. The app also lets you see post metrics and analytics so you can make sure your post didn’t flop.

Planoly is available for iOS on the Apple App Store and the Google Play store for Android.

2. Buffer

BufferCredit: buffer / app store

Buffer is another Instagram post scheduler that helps you plan your posts and analyze feedback once they’re published. Use a calendar view to drag and drop posts into days/time slots for easy scheduling.

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Buffer is available for iOS on the Apple App Store and the Google Play store for Android.

3. Preview

PreviewCredit: preview / app store

Preview offers typical post-scheduling tools and analytics along with a few helpful extras. Get caption ideas, recommendations for hashtags, and more.

Preview is available for iOS on the Apple App Store and the Google Play store for Android.

4. Content Office

Content OfficeCredit: content office / app store

An Instagram post scheduler with a visual boost, Content Office allows users to plan and schedule Instagram posts while learning “marketing and visual guides to grow your brand on Instagram.” Like aesthetics and using visuals to create cohesive themes? Maybe this is the Instaplanner for you.

Content Office is available for iOS on the Apple App Store.

5. Plann

PlannCredit: plann / apple store

You’ll never guess what “Plann” lets you do…

Aside from scheduling posts, get content ideas and recommendations, as well as strategy tips to ensure you’re maximizing your Instagram engagement. Ever wonder when the best time to post something is? Plann can offer you some help with that.

Plann is available for iOS on the Apple App Store and the Google Play store for Android.

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Social networking websites launch features to encourage users to get boosters

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Facebook Instagram and TikTok are launching new features to encourage people to get their coronavirus booster jabs.

From Friday, users will be able to update their profiles with frames or stickers to show that they have had their top-up jab or aim to when they become eligible.

It follows on from people previously being able to show they have had their first and second jabs on certain social networking websites and apps.

TikTok also held a “grab a jab” event in London earlier this year.

I urge everyone who is eligible – don’t delay, get your vaccine or top up jab today to protect yourself and your loved ones

More than 16 million booster vaccines have now been given across the UK.

People who are aged 40 and above and received their second dose of their vaccine at least six months ago are currently eligible to have their booster.

A new campaign advert is also being launched on Friday, which shows how Covid-19 can build up in enclosed spaces and how to prevent that from happening.

Vaccines minister Maggie Throup said:  “Getting your booster is one of the most important things you can do to protect yourself and your family this winter.

“It is fantastic to see some of the biggest household names further back the phenomenal vaccine rollout, allowing their users to proudly display that they have played their part in helping us build a wall of defence across the country.

“I urge everyone who is eligible – don’t delay, get your vaccine or top-up jab today to protect yourself and your loved ones.”

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How many hashtags should you use to get the most ‘Likes’ on Instagram?

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Hashtags are a key feature of Instagram posts. In fact, they have become an essential means of ensuring more ‘Likes’ on social media – so long as you choose them wisely.

But how many hashtags should you use to maximise your popularity on the social network? The answer might surprise you.

It’s a question that many Instagram users ask themselves: what’s the right number of hashtags to add to a post? To find out, the Later platform analysed 18 million Instagram posts, excluding videos, Reels and Stories.

Interestingly, Later’s results differ from Instagram’s own recommendations. According to Later’s analysis, using more hashtags helps get better results in terms of “reach”, or the percentage of users exposed to the post. By using 20 hashtags, Later observed an optimal average reach rate of just under 36%. Using 30 hashtags gets the next-best reach rate. With five hashtags, reach hits just under 24%.

And while a post’s reach is important, engagement is even more so. From “Likes” and comments to shares and follows – on average, 30 hashtags appears to result in better engagement rates: “When it comes to average engagement rate, using 30 Instagram hashtags per feed post results in the most likes and comments,” says Later’s research.

Yet, at the end of September 2021, Instagram advised its creators to use between three and five hashtags for their posts, while warning them against using too many. The social network advised that using 10 to 20 hashtags per post “will not help you get additional distribution”.

For Later, there could be other reasons behind Instagram’s recommendations: “As Instagram continues to expand their discoverability and SEO tools, it makes sense that they want users to experiment with fewer, more relevant hashtags – this could help them accurately categorise and recommend your posts in suggested content streams, like the Instagram Reels feed or the updated hashtag search tabs,” the website explains. – AFP Relaxnews

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