- Instagram today launched its first-ever “Creator Week,” a three-day-long virtual event.
- To kick it off, Mark Zuckerberg unveiled new tests and features aimed at helping creators earn money.
- Here are the key takeaways from Instagram’s live stream.
- See more stories on Insider’s business page.
Mark Zuckerberg wants a stake in the creator economy.
To kick off Instagram’s inaugural “Creator Week,” a three-day-long virtual event providing creators with advice and learning sessions, Zuckerberg today announced news about creator monetization features on the Facebook-owned platform.
“Our goal is to be the best platform for creators like you to make a living,” the Facebook CEO said on the live stream. “And if you have an idea that you want to share with the world, you should be able to create it and get it out there easily and simply — across Facebook and Instagram — and then earn money for your work.”
Here are three upcoming tests and features that Zuckerberg unveiled today:
- Instagram will start testing native affiliate-marketing tools for creators. One feature, first announced in April, will allow creators to earn money by tagging certain products in posts and will start testing in the next few months. The affiliate tool goes hand-in-hand with Instagram’s checkout feature, which allows users to shop directly on Instagram. Brands will be able to set their own commission rates, Zuckerberg said. On any post that includes these affiliates, Instagram will label them with “Eligible for Commission” so that followers know the influencer will be earning money from the placement.
- More tools for creators selling their own products and merchandise. Instagram first expanded shopping features to creator accounts last summer and is now trying to make it easier for influencers to sell their merchandise. Creators with their own products will be able to link to their shop in their personal profile. And later this year, creators will also be able to set up shops and promote product drops on Instagram if they link their account with merchandise companies like Bravado, Fanjoy, Represent, or Spring.
- Creators will be able to earn extra money through incentives. Instagram and Facebook are adding “milestones” for Badges on Instagram Live and Stars on Facebook, which function as tipping features on the respective apps that allow fans to pay creators. Creators will earn bonuses for meeting these milestones.
But there’s still more to come from Instagram in terms of monetization products for creators.
“We know that we’ve only just gotten started here and there’s so much more that we can be doing to support all of you,” Zuckerberg said.
While Instagram has introduced tipping and ad-revenue share on IGTV, these features are not widely available to all creators. And unlike competitors such as TikTok or Snapchat, it has not announced a creator fund that would pay influencers — although head of Instagram Adam Mosseri hasn’t ruled out the idea.
Regardless, creators typically earn a bulk of their income on social-media platforms by working directly with brands on sponsored content. These deals are typically secured either by the creators themselves or via their managers and agents, but platforms are starting to step into the process.
In April, Zuckerberg and Mosseri announced that Instagram was also building a branded content marketplace that would connect creators and brands. TikTok already has a marketplace, and Snapchat just announced its own last month.