Facebook wants to help creators monetize their efforts on its Instagram platform, but it may not be targeting whom you think.
In the world of ecommerce, “creators” are generally considered artists, artisans, and crafters who make the items they sell online. But on the Internet, there’s also a class of creators who publish content, and when Facebook announced new features for creators, it seemed to be referring primarily to the latter.
Content creators make themselves and their style or expertise the “product,” including a subgroup called “influencers.” In a help page on Facebook, it explains how they can create an Instagram “Creator” account:
“Instagram is a vibrant community where public figures and people connect and engage. If you already have a personal Instagram profile or a Professional Account, converting it to a Creator Account let’s you access features that make it easier to control your online presence, understand your growth and manage your messages.”
On Tuesday, Facebook announced that it was proud of the fact that creators can use its platforms to “partner with brands, sell their own merchandise, earn money from their supporters and earn a portion of revenue from ads that run against their video content.”
But it has only scratched the surface, it said. “Today we’re announcing new ways to help creators make a living as they build their personal brands across our platforms.”
One of the features it will test is a “native affiliate tool” that will allow creators to discover new products available on checkout, share them with their followers and earn commissions for the purchases they drive, all within the Instagram app.
It will also provide additional ways for creators to earn from badges and stars.
“Today’s updates are a big part of a broader effort to support creators as they build their careers. Whether creators want to connect with brands, get paid for their content or earn money directly from their fans, we are committed to building the right mix of tools to help them accomplish their goals,” Facebook said. “We’re making exciting progress and will have more to share in the coming months.”
This week’s announcement is on the Facebook corporate website.