All About Whitelisting, Branded Content, and Partnership Ads

All About Whitelisting, Branded Content, and Partnership Ads

allowlisting vs. whitelisting in influencer marketing
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minute read
May 14, 2024

The landscape of creator marketing is multifaceted and rich, full of numerous strategies and opportunities for brands to engage with their audience. In today's post, we dive into four unique methods of advertising in the context of creator marketing – allowlisting ads, whitelisting ads, branded content ads, and Meta’s latest flagship product: partnership ads. We will explore their differences, similarities, and how each plays a role in this vibrant field.

Allowlisting Ads in Influencer Marketing

Allowlisting, also known as "advertiser access," is the most comprehensive form of access. It provides the advertiser with the ability to create and leverage influencer handles, content, and audiences across all Meta campaigns.

With allowlisting access, all of the influencer’s content will flow directly into Facebook Ads Manager and be accessible for boosting or creating new ads. The brand does not need to be tagged in the original post in order to gain access to the creator’s assets. Your team can build engaged and lookalike audiences from the creator’s Instagram account and Facebook Page to target net new audiences and significantly expand reach.

One downside of allowlisting is that it can be cumbersome to make sure partners have their accounts set up properly to grant your team the access needed. The creator can provide an advertiser with access by adding the brand as a 'Partner' in their Meta Business Manager. For this to happen, the creator must have certain settings in place like having a Professional Instagram account (business or Creator), a published Facebook Business Page, connected Facebook Page and Instagram account, and their Instagram and Facebook Page added to the same Facebook Business Manager.

An easier way to go about this is to leverage software such as The Cirqle so you can effortlessly scale performance with creators without having to deal with permissions or any influencer management.

By understanding these different advertising options, you can harness the power of social media platforms and effectively work with influencers and creators to create an impactful marketing strategy. Each method offers its unique benefits, so your selection would depend on your marketing goals and the resources available to you.

Whitelisting Ads in Creator Marketing

Whitelisting is a significant part of creator marketing, often seen as a win-win for both brands and creators. In simple terms, whitelisting is the process of a brand getting advertising permissions from a creator to run paid ads using their social media identity. The creator essentially "allows" the brand to use their content, handle, and audience reach for advertising.

This strategy is increasingly becoming a go-to for eCommerce brands, as it allows them to extend their reach while leveraging the authenticity of creator-generated content.

Whitelisting: What's in it for Brands?

1. Boost Authentic Engagement: By leveraging a creator's persona and their authentic content, brands can dramatically boost engagement levels. These ads often seem less intrusive and more natural to users, helping to combat banner blindness and ad fatigue.

2. Enhance Return on Ad Spend (RoAS) and Cost Per Acquisition (CPA): Brands can test different creator handles, audiences, and content across different types of campaigns, thereby maximizing RoAS and minimizing CPA.

3. Maximize ROI on Influencer Partnerships: Whitelisting extends the shelf life of user-generated content, thus amplifying the impact and longevity of influencer campaigns.

4. Target Niche Audiences: Brands can target the creators' audience and custom lookalike audiences, significantly enhancing the accuracy of their targeting efforts and reaching potential consumers who are more likely to be interested in their products or services.

Whitelisting: What's in it for Creators?

1. Increased Exposure: As the brand promotes the creator's content, it will be seen by a much wider audience. This exposure can lead to increased profile views, higher engagement, and follower growth.

2. Higher Compensation: Given the value that whitelisting brings to brands, creators often use this as a bargaining chip for higher rates.

Whitelisting typically takes place via Branded Content, Partnership Ads (formerly known as Branded Content Ads), or Allowlisting on platforms such as Meta (Facebook and Instagram) and TikTok. Each method has its own advantages, and the best fit for a campaign depends on the brand's specific goals and resources.

Ultimately, whitelisting in creator marketing serves to synergize the authenticity and influence of creators with the strategic, targeted reach of paid advertising. It's a powerful tool for eCommerce brands, particularly in an era where traditional ads are losing effectiveness.

Branded Content Ads in Creator Marketing

Branded content, also known as boosting, refers to content that is organically created by a creator, influencer, or publisher and includes a mention or features a brand's product or service. Once the branded content is published on Facebook or Instagram, the brand can request post-level ad access from the creator, which is granted directly within the Instagram app. The brand then has permission to boost the organic post as an ad and even edit the copy included in the original post.

Branded content provides brands with authentic, organic content that's easily boostable. It requires little work from both the brand and creator, making it extremely efficient and scalable for a business of any size. However, with branded content, you can only target a creator's engaged audience if the creator is featured in the ad handle/header.

Partnership Ads in Creator Marketing

Just a couple of weeks ago, Meta renamed “branded content ads” to “partnership ads” and shared new ways for brands and influencers/creators to partner together on ads. Partnership ads allow advertisers to amplify content from a creator or other partner’s handle, to scale their collaborations.

Advertisers can now boost more types of organic Instagram content as partnership ads, including branded content with the paid partnership label, Instagram Collab posts, @mentions, people tags, product tags, and other content without the paid partnership label, as well as continue to create new partnership ads in Ads Manager without an existing post. We’re refreshing permissions to support these additional use-cases and make partnership ads even easier to use on The Cirqle platform.

The Used Cases

Partnership ads are the most performant and transparent way for advertisers and their partners to run ads together. Campaigns that combine partnership ads with business-as-usuals (BAU) ads drove 53% higher click through rates, 19% lower cost per actions, and 99% probability to outperform BAU ads alone.

There's an incredibly rich amount of Ecommerce companies that have leveraged The Cirqle to achieve these results:

HelloFresh drives 14% lower CPA and a 10x CTR increase

On That Ass Achieves Astounding -45% CPA Decrease

Discover How ABOUT YOU Slashed CPA by 49%

Similarities and Differences

Both allowlisting and whitelisting ads are about leveraging the reach and influence of creators. However, allowlisting ads are creator-centric, providing an authentic feel as the ads appear to come directly from the creator. Whitelisting, on the other hand, allows brands to use a creator's content, but with their own advertising strategies.

Branded content ads and partnership ads both involve collaborations between brands and creators. However, branded content ads usually involve a one-off collaboration, while partnership ads indicate a deeper relationship and commitment, often creating a more profound impact on the audience. At their core, all four methods share a common goal – to make advertising more authentic, relatable, and effective through creator marketing. However, each has its unique role and best-fit scenario, depending on the brand's goals, budget, and the creators they're working with.

In conclusion, successful creator marketing requires an understanding of these different strategies. Allowlisting and whitelisting help in precision targeting and authentic presentation. Simultaneously, branded content and partnership ads offer collaborative ways of creating content that truly resonates with the audience. Understanding the unique role of each will help brands make informed decisions and maximize their marketing efforts in the creator economy.

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