Instagram has now banned influencers from promoting vaping products
Facebook-owned Instagram has already banned advertising of vaping, tobacco products and weapons on its platform and the company is doubling down on this and has now banned influencers from promoting these products.
“Influencers” include celebrities and users with large number of followers and the product endorsements are rampant on Instagram as companies struck deals with influencers to talk about their products and share pictures with the followers.
Even though Facebook and Instagram have banned ads for tobacco products, companies making such products have been using influencers to promote their products through hashtags or posts showing they were gifted the devices by companies.
In a blog post announcing this new rule, Instagram said: “Branded content that promotes goods such as vaping, tobacco products and weapons will not be allowed. Our advertising policies have long prohibited the advertisement of these products, and we will begin enforcement on this in the coming weeks.”
The new guidelines come after Instagram made changes in June to its policies allowing brands to turn an influencer’s post into a sponsored content ad. Such content appear on users’ feed with a “paid partnership with” tag.
Some reports indicate that this will be the first time a platform is implementing restrictions around the type of items that can be promoted for branded content. The move comes on the same day the British Advertising Standards Authority banned tobacco companies from promoting e-cigarettes on social media sites.
Alongside this news, the company also said that it is opening up Facebook’s Brand Collabs Manager to a “select group” of Instagram creators, which means creators will be able to share insights and engagement with brands and find potential brand partners that align with their audience.