Here’s what you need to know.

It was announced in March that social media influencers in the UAE would need to get licenced, and now, we’ve got some more details on how that’s going to work.

This week, the National Media Council announced a three-tier system that will differentiate between macro-influencers and those with smaller, but still significant followings.

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His Excellency Dr Rashed Khalfan Alnuaimi, executive director of support services at the National Media Council, said: “It is primarily our intention to carefully regulate digital media and ensure that the best standards are provided which adhere to our established criteria.”

To that end, people who make money through their social media accounts must apply to the NMC for licences. What’s different now is the categories they can apply under.

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Category 1 is intended for independent influencers. It comes with a Dhs15,000 price tag, and requires a separate trade licence as well.

Category 2 is a partnership licence and that allows for small groups – typically family or friends – to apply for a licence together. They’ll need to form a company and apply for a trade licence, and their influencer licence will also cost Dhs15,000.

Especially noteworthy is Category 3, which applies to official influencer agencies which have been certified by the NMC.

Influencers who work with agencies such as Motivate-Vamp will all be able to operate under the agency’s licence, so long as they are registered exclusively with that one company.

“This is a significant step forward and an enlightened policy from the NMC recognising that all influencers do not fall in to the same category,” Motivate Media Group’s managing partner, Ian Fairservice, says.

“In particular, it distinguishes between macro-influencers, particularly those working alone, and micro-influencers, such as the more than 400 currently aligned with Motivate-Vamp, offering clients an opportunity to tailor and monitor highly bespoke social media campaigns.”

Motivate-Vamp provides a platform to connect brands with influencers’ audiences by curating bespoke campaigns using the highly engaged following of micro-influencers.

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