Walmart Launches Referral Program for Social Media Influencers

Walmart Launches Referral Program for Social Media Influencers
Walmart says its Creator program will allow social media influencers to access its products and earn commissions on sales. (Walmart Inc.)

Walmart Inc. of Bentonville on launched a program Tuesday aiming to help social media influencers refer their followers to its products in exchange for a commission.

The publicly traded retailer giant called Walmart Creator a "one-stop portal that makes it easy for creators to monetize shoppable products from the retailer."

Social media influencers who register with Creator will have access to "tens of thousands of products" and the opportunity to earn commissions on sales they refer to Walmart through links they share on social media platforms like TikTok and Instagram, Walmart said.

Walmart said the program is launching in beta ahead of the holiday season and will be "launching fully in 2023." 

"We know our customers are inspired by the content and stories they see from their favorite influencers in their social feeds every day," Walmart U.S. Chief Marketing Officer William White said in a news release. "This next step in our strategy will help fuel inspiration for our customers by connecting their favorite creators directly with our brand and the brands they love at Walmart."

Walmart said there is no cap on the commissions an influencer can earn, and there is no minimum number of followers an influencer must have to register with the site. But influencers must be based in the U.S.

Walmart said the Creator portal will also offer influencers product recommendations tailored to their interests, as well as an analytics dashboard that will show how customers responded to products influencers featured in their posts. Influencers can also apply to be a part of any upcoming brand campaigns, Walmart said.

In announcing the program, Walmart featured social media style influencer Devan Anderson of Los Angeles, who has 3.8 million followers on TikTok and also posts to Instagram and YouTube.

"I'm so excited to work with Walmart on the new Creator Program — I'm passionate about accessibility and educating and empowering others — and this is both of those things wrapped into one," said Anderson, who goes by DevanOnDeck online. "I'm super pumped to be a part of this and I'm looking forward to creating together."

Walmart featured other influencers on Tuesday, including Darryl Postelnick of Arizona, whose CookingWithDarryl TikTok account boasts 2.7 million followers, and Emma Arletta, who posts fashion, skincare and body positivity content to 475,000 followers on TikTok and another 103,000 followers on Instagram.

Walmart has been experimenting with e-commerce using social media. Last year, it partnered with TikTok for a live shopping event that allowed users to shop for Walmart fashion items featured by TikTok personalities without having to leave the app. Walmart had also been part of a group that proposed purchasing the U.S. operations of the China-based social media site, which was under pressure from the Trump administration to sell.

Last month, Walmart launched a presence on metaverse platform Roblox. It said Walmart Land and Walmart's Universe of Play would offer "unique interactive content and entertainment for customers."