Instagram rolls out more and more ways that allow creators to make money with their content and streamline the collaboration process between them and brands. Branded content on Instagram is one of such tools.

In this article, we’ll focus on branded content and its value to creators. In one of our upcoming pieces, we’ll talk about how it works for businesses.

What Is Branded Content on Instagram?

Instagram defines branded content as ‘a creator or publisher's content that features or is influenced by a business partner for an exchange of value (for example, where the business partner has paid the creator or publisher).’

Branded content is an Instagram tool that allows you, as creators, to monetise your content, either with money or with something valuable. The payments are made by the business partner/advertiser, which is typically a brand.

So for you, as an influencer, branded content is any post that was compensated or sponsored by a brand.

Beyond this undoubtful upside, branded content on Instagram lets you build the reputation of a recognised business partner and a creator worth working with. The more such labelled branded content partnerships you have, the more authenticity you show to your potential business partners and attract more advertisers.

Branded Content on Instagram: How It Works

To get compensated with money for publishing partner posts, creators must tag the relevant brand or their business partner when posting content. Branded content opportunities are available for creator and business accounts.

When you tag your business partner or advertiser, people will see Paid partnership (with @username) above your posts.

Before you start, make sure you comply with Instagram Partner Monetisation Policies and Branded Content Policies.

💡If you want to collaborate with political figures or parties, you can do that no other way than through branded content labels.

Once you're sure you comply with the required policies, you need to set up branded content tools. To do so, open Instagram Settings -> Creator/Business -> Branded Content -> Set Up Branded Content Tools -> Enable.

Brands should approve your request if you want to tag them as your brand partner, and only afterwards will their username appear in the paid partnership label. While you’re waiting for them to approve, the label will contain no brand name. You will be notified upon approval.

If the brand denies your partner request, the partnership label will be removed from your content.

When the post is live, your business partner will receive a notification. They also have access to the post’s insights and stats.

💡Suggested read: A Definitive Guide to Instagram Analytics and How It Works

Who Can Create Branded Content: Eligibility

To get a full understanding of the eligibility requirements, check Instagram’s Eligibility Standards.

For your convenience, here’s a brief overview to check your eligibility:

  • You must have a creator or business account.
  • You have to comply with Instagram’s Community Guidelines.
  • You cannot be a government official subject to government rules or ethics.
  • You mustn’t share fake news and misinformation on your account.
  • You have to maintain a sufficient follower base and an established presence.

If you meet these and more requirements from the above, you can start getting compensation through branded content on Instagram.

How to Create Branded Content on Instagram

Branded content works not only in feed posts.

According to Instagram, ‘creators can disclose their partnerships with brands in Feed, Stories, Live, Reels and Instagram videos.'

💡Make sure your brand partner has a business or creator account before you begin. Otherwise, they won’t appear in search results when you add them to branded content.

How to Create Branded Content in Feed Posts

Here’s a quick tutorial to creating a branded content feed post:

  1. Start making an Instagram post as you normally would.
  2. Press Next after you select a photo or video, apply a filter, and add a caption.
  3. Turn the Add paid partnership label toggle on.
  4. Click on Add brand partners to add the username of your advertiser. You can select up to two partners.

Technically, you can share a post without choosing a brand partner. So this step is optional.

5. Tap Done.

6. Click Share.

You can also turn the Allow brand partner to promote toggle on to allow your brand partners to run ads with the post.

Note that if you select two brand partners, the post can’t be promoted.

After you share the post, it will have the paid partnership label with no brand name on it if they haven’t approved you yet.

💡Schedule Instagram posts to have it published later with Combin Scheduler, a free Instagram posts and stories planning tool.

How to Create Branded Content in Stories

  1. Start creating an Instagram story as you normally would.
  2. Tap the tag icon at the top of your screen.
  3. Click Add Brand Partners or Add Paid Partnership Label to search for the brand.

4. Tap the username of the brand to add them to your story.

Just like in feed posts, you can turn on the toggle Allow brand partner to promote.

5. Tap Done. Then Share.

How to Create Branded Content for Live Broadcasts

  1. Go live on Instagram as you normally would.
  2. Tap Details in the burger menu when you’re live.
  3. Press Add brand partners to find the brand you want to partner with. You can only add brands you have approval from.
  4. Click on the name of the brand you want to add to your live broadcast.

How to Create Branded Content in Reels & Videos

  1. Start making a Reel or video as you normally would.
  2. Press Next.
  3. Click Advanced settings.
  4. Turn the Add paid partnership label toggle on.
  5. Click Add brand partners and find the brand you need.
  6. Select the brand’s handle and add them to your clip.

How to Check Branded Content Performance

You and your brand partners can view insights and stats of the branded posts.

Brands will be able to see reach and engagement in feed posts; in stories, they can see reach, taps forward, taps backward, replies and exits during 14 days.

💡 Suggested read: Crucial Instagram Marketing KPIs and How to Track Them

You will be able to see all metrics directly on Instagram insights.

There are two possible ways to track the performance of your branded content posts: Business Manager and the Instagram app.

View Branded Content Insights in Business Manager

  1. Go to All Tools in Business Manager.
  2. Find the Analyse and report tab and click Meta Brand Collabs Manager.
  3. View your insights.

View Branded Content Insights in the Instagram App

  1. Go to your notifications to view the Activity screen.
  2. Click Monetisation to view a list of business partners who have tagged you.
  3. Pick the three dots and select the content the performance of which you want to check.
  4. Click View Insights.

Can Instagram Branded Content Be Advertised?

It can. To create a branded content ad, go to Ads Manager and then do this:

  1. Start creating an ad as you normally would.
  2. Pick one of the objectives that are available for branded content:
  • App Installs
  • Brand Awareness
  • Reach
  • Traffic
  • Video Views
  • Conversions
  • Page post engagement (feed only)

3. Continue creating your ad.

At the Placements step, select Instagram feed, Stories or Explore.

4. At the ad level, hit Use existing post. Here you'll see the list of available branded content posts and stories in the Creative section.

5. Choose the branded content post or story that you want to promote. You can run your ad on all Instagram placements (Feed, Stories, and Explore).

6. You'll see a preview of your ad. Then, finish creating your ad and click Confirm.

This is how Instagram branded content works if you're a creator. As you see, it's an additional way to get more reach, advertising opportunities and ways to monetise content efforts.

Instagram branded content works similarly for brands but has its nuances which we'll cover in one of the upcoming pieces.