Instagram’s creator marketing platform is expanding its access to brand agencies, with the aim of making the process of influencer collaborations easy and efficient.

The platform initially launched its creator marketplace in July 2022 as a destination which allowed brands to find creators they want to connect with for partnerships and campaigns.

With the social media platform’s expansion plans, the first new API feature will give brands the chance to instantly reach content creators in a ‘priority inbox’ on the platform.

The creator marketplace will also become the home of brands’ structured project briefs, with its second API feature giving brands a platform to publish their plans to creators directly from a third party.

Instagram’s expansion plans include beta testing with a small number of launch API partners. These creator marketing platforms include Aspire, Captiv8, and CreatorIQ, with plans for opening access to additional creator marketing partners soon.

What does this mean for the creator economy?

As a result, brands can now reach creators where they live on Instagram through a dedicated channel connected to these creator marketing partners without the need to switch platforms.

The goal is to provide creators with the ability to more easily manage their interactions with both followers and brands to better communicate and nurture business partnerships.

“Our focus as a company has always been to bring creators and brands closer together, putting the creator at the center of the ecosystem," said Tim Sovay, Chief Business Development and Partnerships Officer at CreatorIQ, in a statement.

“Instagram’s creator marketplace API integration is a game-changing innovation that elevates brand-creator communications to a new level and highlights Instagram’s ongoing leadership in this area. CreatorIQ is honored by Instagram’s endorsement of our platform and is proud to be a launch partner of this important effort.”

Instagram remains the largest social platform that creators rely on to engage with followers and work with brands, according to CreatorIQ.

The vast majority of creator campaigns within the CreatorIQ platform include Instagram, at 89%, more than double the next largest platform. The platform believes this demonstrates “tremendous opportunities for brands to connect with creators on Instagram.”

Lucy Baker, Product Director at Instagram, agrees that creators need the ability to interact with both followers and brands seamlessly and efficiently in order to grow their business.

She says, “Giving Instagram creators access to the thousands of brands that use CreatorIQ to manage their creator marketing efforts provides a seamless experience so they can better share ideas, grow their trade, and foster long-term business partnerships.”

Creator discovery and collaborations

Instagram has also revealed its plans to dedicate access to the creator marketplace for brand agencies. The initial tests will allow agencies to manage creator discovery and collaborations on behalf of their brand clients.

This access is currently being tested with a selective group of partners, including Rickhouse Media, Power Digital, Influential, WPromote, Dentsu, OMG and Brkfst.

The platform’s expansion plans will now allow agencies to filter creators by gender, age, number of followers and interests. However, agencies will also be able to filter for creators based on the demographics of their engaged audience, which similarly include their gender, age, interests, country and city.

Agencies will also be able to send messages directly to creators’ dedicated partnership messages folders and publish discoverable projects that eligible creators can apply to.

Ryan Detert, CEO at Influential, shared his thoughts on the expansion in an Instagram blog post, saying how he believes Meta has always been at the forefront of the creator economy, providing value to both brands and creators.

He continues, “We are very excited to partner on Instagram’s creator marketplace and provide brands even deeper insights and communication, all while helping creators fund their passion by helping them monetise their community with seamless and authentic brand deals.”

As the creator economy continues to evolve, social media platforms must also adapt in order to provide brands, agencies, and creators with the tools and advice they need to create successful partnerships. We’ve seen this achieved recently with TikTok’s Creativity Program Beta, and YouTube’s Partner Program, but Meta has decided it’s time to catch up. What will the creator economy bring us next?

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