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Why Facebook is trying to buy instant influencer success


Facebook is no stranger to flash money to attract stars to its platform. While promoting his games service, he reportedly offered popular streamer Ninja $ 60-90 million to produce live video exclusively on his service. It has also offered publishers ostensibly generous revenue-sharing packages to create exclusive content, with The New York Times, BuzzFeed, National Geographic and three other publishers among the first to try it.

As Facebook focuses on growing its social commerce revenue, it naturally follows that it should also announce a tantalizing number to attract influencers to the platform. It has seen competitors like Snapchat and TikTok encroach on its social territory and, even with Instagram under its belt, Facebook’s main platform is not always the first choice for influencers.

Mark Zuckerberg has announced a billion dollar reward package for creators and influencers who choose to use the tools of Facebook and Instagram. While the exact criteria and milestones to be eligible for payment are unclear, Facebook is hoping that hard cash will be enough to tempt creators.

In fact, TikTok far exceeds it in terms of registrations – it was the world’s most downloaded app in the first half of 2021 – largely on that support. The Information estimates that VCs have invested $ 2 billion in 50 creator-focused startups this year, and Facebook doesn’t want to lose its position as a market leader in any aspect of the social.

Move on your way to success

Claudia Cameron is Marketing and Insights Manager at IMA, an influencer agency. She believes the announcement is a recognition of the importance of the influencer to Facebook’s larger revenue mix: “Facebook’s investment is finally a recognition that creators within its platforms are an integral part of their business. product.

“Content is king, and hosting the best content will ensure that users of the platform keep coming back. Thus allowing Facebook to continue to generate profits by serving advertisements.

Despite this, she argues that it has a long way to go for this to be seen as a real effort by Facebook, especially in light of the tangible support offered by its competitors: “Instagram remains the benchmark for creators and users alike. . However, it’s important to note that TikTok’s growing presence and popularity is fueled not only by its algorithm, but also by the platform that feeds its creators. Understanding that influencers creating content are an extremely important factor in getting an audience to revisit the platform is key to successfully attracting a revisited and engaged audience.

Maira Genovese, founder and chief marketing officer of MG Empower, agrees, saying, “We believe these new monetization features should be tracked through easier ways for creators to present their results, with an analytics tool. improved so that they can actually grow and develop better. content. We see many influencers lost on how to explore their impact as producers of digital content.

“Those two shortcomings can certainly cause them to easily transition to competitors – especially at this time when we have designer programs in development on most platforms. TikTok has been a game-changer because it has made it famous. an easy-to-reach resource, which has grown influencer numbers at a speed never seen before, so it’s not just about monetization, it’s actually about getting the attention of a bigger number of creators and to perpetuate their digital presence.

The bigger picture

In launching the fund, Facebook faces two main obstacles. The first is that it is not primarily known as a place for creators and influencers. Oliver Lewis, Group Managing Director and Founder of The Fifth, said: “The battle for designer engagement is intensifying and driven largely by the adoption of new formats. And in particular, in recent times, abbreviated vertical videos – think TikTok, Instagram Reels, and now YouTube Shorts.

“Lately, Facebook has become a complementary choice for many brands, usually only when reach and brand awareness are primary goals, or when it comes to targeting an older population. As a result, this is reflected in the influencers themselves. Instagram, on the other hand, is still a top influencing platform for talent and brands, but its dominance over the past two years has been eroded by TikTok.

This is a view echoed by Jim Meadows, Chief Strategy Officer at Takumi, who says, “While many creators engage in brand partnerships, many now see creating content for social media as a real challenge. working full time and relying solely on paid partnerships is no longer commercially viable. .

“Many are looking for other business opportunities, and social platforms that offer financial rewards are likely to attract the best creators over the rest. Facebook must offer its creators payment, brand partnerships and access to a large platform of potential fans in order to attract creators.

“The challenges Facebook now faces are supporting new creators’ breakthroughs, strengthening their fandom, and ensuring that when this kind of fund is created it supports and encourages serious diversity and creativity. “

The second problem is that creators may be hesitant to engage with a platform known to drop support for programs like this and bury data that doesn’t match the image it is trying to project. .

However, it offers influencers the ability to instantly reach a large-scale audience. As rivals continue to build audiences, Facebook has plenty to spare. Genovese says, “We currently see Facebook as a powerful tool to drive campaigns focused on more specific KPIs, like reach, and targets like brand awareness among determined demographics.

“In addition, the platform offers great opportunities for community building, especially with the way groups grow for niche discussions – over 1.8 billion people engage in these channels every month. . It’s a very powerful landscape considering that some influencers have managed to forge strong links with their audience within the platform.

It would be ridiculous to bet against Facebook when it comes to purchasing power; he has a history of brute force solutions by throwing money at the problem. But with influencers, who have always been immersed in the world of digital connections, that might not be enough, especially when there are other creator-driven platforms and opportunities open to them.

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