What Marketers Must Know About Sponsored Posts On Social

Advertising With Sponsored Posts: What Marketers Need To Know

Advertising With Sponsored Posts Social Media Marketing

Social media provides brands with a unique opportunity to reach millions of consumers who spend hours each day watching YouTube videos, scrolling through Instagram photos, and reading blog posts. As social media audiences are confronted with an increasing amount of content—on YouTube alone, over 500 hours of video content is uploaded every minute—collaborating with social media influencers to create sponsored posts, YouTube videos, and/or Snapchat Stories is now one of the most effective ways for companies to capture the attention of engaged users (ReelSEO).

For brands, knowing the salient differences between sponsored posts on different platforms and the guidelines marketers must follow can ensure that campaigns accomplish their goals and keep the sponsoring company in good standing with both consumers and consumer protection agencies.

Related Post: What Is Sponsored Content?

Why FTC Guidelines For Sponsored Posts Are Important

In addition to upholding anti-trust laws and monitoring predatory lending practices, the United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC) helps people make informed purchasing decisions by protecting consumers from deceptive advertising (FTC). The growth of influencer marketing and the prevalence of sponsored content & posts on social media has led the FTC to develop strict guidelines regarding how both paid and unpaid sponsorships and sponsored content must be presented to audiences.

Related Post: Native Advertising vs Sponsored Content vs Influencer Marketing

For brands, asking social media influencers to divulge sponsorships is not only ethical, it is also required by law. Companies who fail to meet FTC guidelines may incur penalties and risk tarnishing the reputation of both the collaborating influencer and their own brand image.

For more resources on making sure your company’s influencer marketing campaign abides by all FTC guidelines, see the following list of resources and helpful blog articles:

Sponsored Posts 101: Instagram, YouTube, Blogs, & Snapchat

Though sponsored posts share similarities across every social media platform, there are subtle differences in formatting, campaign execution, and FTC regulations when it comes to marketing on Instagram, YouTube, Snapchat, or when collaborating with bloggers to create brand-sponsored content. For marketers, it’s important to know the distinctions between:





  • Snapchat Takeovers, products placements, unboxing videos, and brand promotions on an influencer’s Snapchat account are the most popular types of brand-sponsored Snapchat content, though innovative companies are experimenting with new and different ways to engage Snapchat’s large audiences.
  • FTC Guidelines: Though branded on-demand geofilters and lenses are obviously sponsored content (and therefore don’t require explicit statements of sponsorships), neither Snapchat nor the FTC has determined exactly how to regulate brand-sponsored Snapchat Stories or Takeovers. To be safe, companies should require influencers to divulge the sponsorship at the beginning of the campaign (during the first Snap of the Story).
  • Examples: