According to reports, Facebook is testing a “Branded Content Matching” search engine to help marketers and creators connect, and to work together to create sponsored content on the platform.
Is this Facebook‘s foray into influencer marketing? Perhaps. According to leaked screenshots of “promotional materials” of a new Facebook tool, Facebook is working on ways to help marketers to combine their campaigns on the platform with sponsored content from creators. The “Branded Content Matching” search engine allows advertisers to search for details on the audiences of creators – as well as their stats – to allow them to connect and work on campaigns together.
The news of the test was leaked to AllFacebook.de and after picking up the story, TechCrunch “has now confirmed with Facebook the existence of the test of the search engine.” As TechCrunch notes in its recent post on the matter “Facebook first vaguely noted it would build a creator-brand tool in March, but now we know what it looks like and exactly how it works.”
Ok, so… How does it work?
Well, for starters, it seems that Facebook won’t be directly involved in any deals done between marketers and creators; nor will it be taking a cut from any deals at first. Initially, the search engine will be a tool to allow brands to create better marketing content – in collaboration with people who already do it well.
TechCrunch reports that “Facebook wants to help businesses find creators who can authentically reach their target audience while allowing creators a path to monetising their Facebook content and fan base.” To take part in the test, creators would have to set up a portfolio with their best content and of course their metrics.
On the other hand, advertisers can look for creators who satisfy certain conditions regarding their demographics and targeting information. For example, this could include top countries, interests, gender, education history, relationship status, life events, home ownership status, and others.
How this pans out is anyone’s guess at this point, but it’s clear that Facebook is running out of ad inventory, and it’s also clear that people don’t want any more ads. Also, Facebook wants to help bring brands together with those who can help them create content, rather than share their content. So, it’s “influencer marketing” in a general sense, but there’s more to it.
We will keep you updated as this story develops further.