Facebook’s Branded Content tags are designed to help better enable influencer marketing and sponsor partnerships, providing more transparency over which endorsements are paid promotions.
The process is fairly straight-forward – the sponsoring brand makes a deal with the associated Page, which then adds the relevant Page as a tag in the post, creating the link as shown in the top example.
But as noted by Marketing Land, that system can quite easily be mis-used:
“Branded content” can be a slippery term. In theory, it refers to an article or video that a brand paid a publisher or creator to produce or star in and to distribute to their audience. However, in practice, it can simply be an article or video that a brand paid a publisher or creator to distribute to their audience; it may not even be content but instead a link to a product page on a brand’s e-commerce site, making something that was already closely related to an ad now all too identical to one.”
This means brands can essentially distribute ads through another means, which is not what Branded Content tags were intended for.
To counter this, Facebook is updating its Branded Content rules, adding a new regulation to stamp out this type of mis-use:
The new addition states that Pages using Branded Content tags should not ‘accept anything of value to post content that you did not create or were not involved in the creation of, or that does not feature you.’
It’s a small revision, but will likely become an increasingly important one as businesses look to new means to boost their Facebook distribution in the face of the platform’s upcoming News Feed changes, which will limit Page reach.
If you’re using Branded Content tags, worth noting this new regulation (which will apply to both Facebook and Instagram), and ensuring your business complies – Facebook says that it’s established a new process to detect such violations, and punishments will include the restriction of access to Facebook’s monetization tools.
And with the usage of Branded Content tags increasing fourfold over the last year, there’s definitely a lot of brands taking it up.
Worth making sure your business stays within the rules.