Instagram Announces New Clampdown on Influencers Who Fail to Reveal Commercial Partnerships


After a new investigation by the UK Competition and Markets Authority, Instagram has promised to do more actions to protect customers by making sure that influencers reveal commercial relationships in their posts.

In the UK and many other countries, influencers are asked to flag commercial arrangements by putting tags on their posts like #sponsored or #ad. However, the CMA has discovered that a lot of them don’t do that. That would make Instagram itself face legal actions. Also, to avoid this, Instagram has promised to increase its action around sponsored posts and ads.

Instagram works to solve the problems on two sides:

  • First off, Instagram is working to add a new alert that would ask influencers to state if they have received incentives to make ads for a service or a product before they can share their post.
  • Instagram is developing a new algorithm to determine potential promoted content. It may look to warn the relevant businesses then, and inform them about the rules of the platform around such posts.

This has been a concern that was standing long, Instagram has been working to solve this problem about the proper reveal in influencer marketing for a few years now. In 2017, Instagram has added a new option to tag business partner in posts to grant more clarity about the sponsored ad. 

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Instagram Announces New Clampdown on Influencers Who Fail to Reveal Commercial Partnerships 2

However, as noted, a lot of users still fail to abide by the rules, and even when people actually do add the relevant tags, most of them still fail to meet the particular rules and requirements.

A recent study found that more than three-quarters of influencer promotions on Instagram hide the #ad or #sponsored disclosure beyond the main caption, meaning that users need to expand the text for the disclosure to be seen. According to regulations, influencer marketing labels need to be prominent enough that consumers will easily notice them, and hiding them lower down may actually still be in violation of official rules, and could also come under scrutiny.

A new study has found that over 3 quarters of influencers ads and promotions on Instagram do hide the #sponsored or #ad reveal in the main caption, which means that users do need to open the full text for the reveal to be seen. As per the regulations, influencer marketing labels have to be outstanding enough to consumers that they can notice them easily.

Actually, all brand/influencer partnerships in all countries have to be required to use the parter tag. And we think that is where Instagram will, in the end, move on this. However, currently, the platform is only committing to announce maximized reveal tools in the coming year, and it is not obvious now if the new measurements will apply in all countries until now.

However, if you run influencers ads, it might be worth strengthen up your procedures, and making sure you are granting clarity on partnerships before the new push. The information maya be not obvious, yet we know that the change is coming near, and the expectations about such are would be declining very soon.