Instagram is expanding creators’ modes of revenue.
The platform revealed in a company blog post that it will begin testing a feature allowing influencers to monetize live videos. Views on Instagram Lives increased 70 percent from February to March, according to Instagram. Beginning in June, select creators and businesses will test out Badges, a feature that followers can buy during live videos.
“Providing a variety of monetization tools is crucial in order to support all creators on Instagram, from emerging digital stars to established entertainers and everything in between,” said Justin Osofsky, Instagram’s chief operating officer, in a statement.
Buying a badge makes a follower more prominent in a creator’s comments section during a live video. Influencers will also be able to view a list of all badge holders. Instagram will not take a revenue share of Badges during its initial testing period, but will “explore revenue share” for Badges in the future, according to a spokesperson.
Instagram also said it will roll out advertising capabilities for IGTV starting next week. IGTV ads will appear when users click on IGTV videos from previews in their feeds. The video ads will be optimized for mobile, lasting up to 15 seconds.
IGTV ads will also be available to a select group of creators and advertisers to start. Instagram will take a 45 percent cut of ad revenue generated through IGTV.
Influencers have taken a hit to their bottom lines during the coronavirus, losing an average of $3,100 a week, according to an Attain report. Instagram’s launches seem to offer ways to supplement lost income — though the features are only available to a limited number of influencers to start.
Instagram recently launched Live Shopping, allowing creators and brands to tag products during live videos. In its blog post, the company said in the coming months it will expand shopping access to more influencers looking to sell their merchandise on the platform.
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