Facebook and Instagram have introduced many features that range from building branded content tags to incorporating more monetization opportunities for creators. Both businesses and creators have used these tools in order to create authentic ads and build more meaningful relationships. To define amplifying influencer content with paid media, there are three terms in the industry you need to know: dark posts, advertising access, and whitelisting. These tactics are becoming the answer for marketers who are aiming to deliver and measure ROI through influencer campaigns.
Dark posts are targeted ads that in turn are unpublished posts on Facebook and Instagram. Users don’t see them on their news feed and on the profiles of the handle running ads, hence the influencers your brand is working with. The strength of this not so secret marketing weapon is that they can be shown to a specific audience which solves the declining organic reach problem on social media.
Advertising access can be used as a synonym for whitelisting, which means to run paid ads over your partners’ accounts after obtaining the appropriate permission. But let’s dive into everything you need to know in more depth!
What is influencer whitelisting?
As just stated, whitelisting describes the process when an influencer grants a brand partner the permission to advertise on their social media accounts, which allows brands to use the influencer’s handle for their ads.
This tactic has many advantages: Marketers are able to control who sees the whitelisted posts and to target people who don’t yet follow the influencer. Moreover, they can make small edits to the copy and creatives of the influencer’s post. Unlike Instagram stories that disappear in 24 hours, the visibility of whitelisted posts can be extended.
Besides these advantages for brands and marketers, whitelisting holds possibilities for creators, too. Influencers get exposure to new, wider, and yet like-minded audiences who may have not interacted with them before and eventually grow their own following quickly.
Whitelisting can be a win-win situation for both the brands and the creators they work with. Valuable insights and access to performance metrics can understand what type of content resonates. Furthermore, as for the core purpose of influencer marketing, whitelisting builds trust between brands and creators as well as their audiences through more authentic ads.
Step by Step to whitelisting influencer content
Brands and influencers can run ads on both Facebook and Instagram by setting up a Facebook business manager account. This only takes two minutes and is needed to proceed.
Initially, influencers need to give brands access to the content within the Facebook Business Manager. Within the FB business manager, open Business Settings > Users > tap ‘Partners; then tap the Add dropdown and select ‘Give a partner access to your assets’, enter the brand’s Facebook Business Manager ID > tap ‘Next’; select Assets and Permissions for the brand to Create Ads.
Now, you can create ads. Use the standard ad creation flow and build custom audiences on the Facebook Business Manager. Through this, brands get more mileage out of the content whilst streamlining marketing asset creations. Especially helpful is the possibility to test and edit the ads. Run a trial post in order to find the perfect message for your target.
On TikTok, influencer whitelisting is evenly easy to set up. Here too, the ad authorization has to be turned on: influencers have to tap on ‘Me’, go to the tap ‘Privacy’ in their settings and switch on ‘Ad authorization’. Influencers now choose the video they want to have whitelisted and again go to ‘Ad Settings’. Within the tab, they turn on ‘Ad authorization’, tap ‘Generate Code’ and choose the length of the authorization of the content (seven, 30 or 60 days). Finally, through ‘Authorize’ > ‘Copy code’, they can send you the link to their whitelisted video.
As for YouTube, whitelisting isn’t really necessary, because YouTube ads don’t show the channel profile image from where the video is being promoted. However, it can be smart for your brand to link the influencer’s YouTube channel to your brand’s Google Ads account. To do so, the influencer has to log into their YouTube Studio account and click on Settings, select ‘Channel’, then select the tab labeled ‘Advanced settings’. They select ‘Link Account’ and enter your brand’s Google Ads ID. Your brand will receive a notification to accept the link and once approved, you can work together and create audiences through your influencer’s YouTube channel.
Kolsquare tips for your influencer whitelistening strategy
As for every influencer marketing campaign, you need to find your brand’s right fit. Also important is that the influencers you want to partner with have a business profile, creator account, or a verified account on Instagram. Typically, that’s possibly only problematic with nano or micro influencers.
Surely, you need to thoroughly plan the campaign, because it takes time to execute it from end to end. You need to reach out to influencers, send products, and wait for their content. As we have pointed out before, the great thing about paid media is the longer lifespan you have for your content and the resulting larger audiences.
Be aware of the legal requirements of such a campaign, i.e. usage rights that can lead to additional fees. These, and any other payments, should range within your set budget. However developed the sector of influencer marketing already is, there is no standard influencer contract. Marketers should guarantee explicit details to the level of whitelisting permissions or admin access. Understanding the contract by avoiding and solving any confusion caused by language is another practical tip.
Of course, you also need to measure the organic component of the campaign besides the metrics of the paid ad. So every paid ad should be overseen by an ads or influencer marketing manager to track and measure the impressions and clicks, as well as the add to carts and conversions. Long story short, calculate your ROI with great care.
Guide the influencers you want to work with through the ad approval process if they haven’t done that before. Communicate clearly what you want and expect but let them have their creative freedom. Tip: clickable hashtags reduce traffic to your brand’s website so remove them from your dark post ads. Overall, influencer whitelisting is an effective and powerful tool to grow your business.