Social media and influencers. The two go together like, well, brands and sponsored partnerships with influential content creators. So it is not too surprising the original social network, Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook, wants to get in on the action. Like really in on it.

In its latest bid for a slice of the #spon pie, Facebook has announced a new in-app platform to connect brands with influencers. The Brands Collab Manager promises to “build lasting partnerships between creators and brands” by connecting the two on its own forum. Information and images on the platform’s site, show what appears to be a directory of “creators” which brands registered on the platform can search, and go into business with.

Brands can use Facebook’s metrics to:

  • See how closely each creator’s audience matches yours based on criteria like interests, gender, age range and more;
  • Discover fresh talent by exploring up-and-coming creators with follower counts ranging from 25,000 to 8 million;
  • See the track record of creators by “browsing creators’ history of branded content posts on Facebook and view a list of past business partners”.

Creators/influencers can use it to:

  • Get discovered by brands;
  • Showcase your best original content. Brand Collabs Manager automatically displays your audience insights, performance data and past brand partnerships;
  • Approach brands by appearing on their suggested list of creators.

While it is currently carries no costs for brands and creators, the value to Facebook is hard to ignore. Not only will they get more advertising revenue from the resulting ad campaigns, but by showing brands and influencers cold, hard data (their exact ROI) – Facebook could potentially start drawing back in its dwindling numbers with better content.

As one commentator put it, “…the big focus here is the creators themselves. For Facebook to win out, particularly in terms of video content, it needs prominent, popular creators posting content to the app. At present, YouTube’s monetization model is far more advanced, giving it the lead in creator appeal, but Facebook has a lot more total users, and total reach, than YouTube can provide. If Facebook can give those creators more opportunity to monetize their work – and not just through in-stream ads – that could help them get more creators across, boosting engagement and time spent in-app.”

For businesses and social media marketers, this also creates more opportunities to leverage creative and authentic content on Facebook (and who’s to say the same can’t be re-used on other social sites, too?). In fact, at Mosh, we reckon this sophisticated wee tool adds – to use a very cliche metaphor – even more weapons to social media marketers’ arsenals.

With concrete ROI, scores of new talent waiting to be discovered, and a bit of insight into what the competition is up to – we see content creation about to level up. Think more creativity, higher quality and extra strategic thinking required to stand out; all driven by the underlying need for authenticity to appeal to increasingly savvy consumers. Currently available only to limited brands and creators in the US, interested parties can join a waitlist for updates.