The director & head of content & community partnerships, Facebook India, details Meta’s brand partnership process and creator vision.
This year, Meta has focussed on rewarding and recognising its creators in India. The company organised Meta 'Creator Day' events in five Tier-I cities (one in each city).
In the Kolkata edition, which was the company's first 'Creator Day' event in India, Manish Chopra, director & head of partnerships, Facebook India, said that globally, the country is the most important one for Meta. It has, till now, done the most amount of testing of new product features in the country.
YouTube also hosts creator themed events worldwide and has organised YouTube Fanfests in India in the past as well. While YouTube Fanfest is more of an event where fans interact with creators, Meta's Creators Days were events exclusively held for their creators. This means there was no external interaction with fans. Also, the scales of the events are extremely different. While YouTube's events are generally large, outdoor affairs, Meta's events were organised indoors and only a select few top creators based in the five cities.
According to Paras Sharma, director & head of content & community partnerships, Facebook India, Meta's growth relies heavily on the initiatives of it creators.
"The reason why people are spending time on our family of apps, is because of the content. We have seen an astronomical increase in short-format video category consumption. Reels has been the rocket ship for growth for this sort of content in the country. What powers this short-form content, is the creators. We, therefore, are committed to helping and enabling the growth of this creator economy and ecosystem."
Sharma adds that Meta is currently witnessing the emergence of creators from smaller cities. "Today, we have over two lakh aspiring and emerging creators. 65% of our BoI creators come from Tier-II and III towns."
Meta is trying to leverage this ratio to its benefit. Sharma explains that while these diverse sets of creators bring in a variety of audiences to the platform, it also helps the people at Meta to analyse and identify new genres of content that are finding favour among Indian audiences.
We have seen an astronomical increase in short-format video category consumption. Reels have been the rocket ship for growth for this sort of content in the country. What powers this short-form content, is the creators.Paras Sharma, director & head of content & community partnerships, Facebook India
"We don't want the content ecosystem to rely solely on what is popular and trending. While entertainment content continues to be the one that draws the mainstream audience, we have been discovering various genres and subgenres of content on the platform. We do this by enabling creators to develop content in the categories that they are interested in."
Sharma shares that the identification of these subgenres, and the creators present within them, help Meta's sales and partnership teams.
"We do multiple sessions with brands. We get the word out about these creators. Our sales and partnership teams work for that perfect match between the brands (like Royal Enfield, Country Delight, etc.) and creators. As a part of one of our programs, we also train the creators to create better branded content."
Sharma observes that creators, with smaller followings, are emerging to be a major marketing force in the country. He gives the example of Country Fresh's co-founder, who revealed that the company first partnered with celebs to endorse its products, followed by micro-influencers and smaller creators.
"Micro-influencer’s connection with their audience is unique. They have a different relatability factor with the audiences. This factorplays into their favour when it comes to brand integrations."
Meta India's plans to continue hosting the 'Creator Day' events. However, the next renditions would be hosted in smaller, non-metro cities. Officials from Meta confirm that this would be the company's plan for next year.