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Instagram Announces Affiliate Program, New Stars Options to Help Provide Revenue Options for Creators

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Tying into its Creator Week showcase event, Instagram has announced some new monetization options for creators, including a new affiliate marketing program, which will make it easier for creators to earn money from product promotions, and new additions to its Stars creator donations process.

First off, on its new affiliate program – Instagram says that in the coming months, it’ll begin testing a new ‘native affiliate tool’, which will enable creators to discover new products available for purchase in the app, then share them with their followers and earn commissions for any subsequent purchases that they drive.

Instagram affiliate marketing program

As you can see here, the new process will enable creators to sign up for the new Affiliate program, which will then enable them to choose from products available in the app to add to their posts. And if users tap through on their post, and go on to make a purchase, the creator will get a commission – so it’s essentially an influencer marketing process without the creator having to do any of the negotiation or leg-work to put the incentive deal in place.

You can also see the new “Eligible for commission” notifier at the top of the post in the second screenshot here.

It’s an interesting idea, and it’ll certainly open up new pathways for monetization, a key focus for every social platform amid the rise of eCommerce and the increasing push to provide more incentive to keep their top creators posting more often.

But it also seems potentially risky. Through this process, it seems like the brands themselves won’t have any direct say in who endorses their products, which could be problematic in many ways. Would you want to allow a creator with a checkered history to promote your brand? 

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It’s likely that Instagram has an approval process of some kind in place for this, and if it does, it could be a big step forward in helping creators make money from their Instagram posts quickly and easily, which could be significant. But the details seem a little thin at this stage.  

Instagram says that it will test the option “with a small group of US-based creators and businesses” first, including Benefit, Kopari, MAC, Pat McGrath Labs and Sephora. The program will be expanded to more partners and regions in future.

Instagram’s also adding a new option that will enable users to attach their existing shop to their personal profile, along with their business or Creator account.

Instagram Shop

That will provide more avenues for direct promotion, expanding audience reach – while Instagram is also adding another shops option which will enable creators who have their own merchandise lines to more easily set up a new shop by linking their account with one of four merchandise partners (Bravado/UMG, Fanjoy, Represent, and Spring). 

Instagram Creator Shops

That will essentially streamline the on-platform selling process for creators, by directly linking through to the supplier, as opposed to having to upload their own catalog and build it themselves.

Shops on personal profiles will be available from today, while the new merchandise linking option will roll out to all eligible creators in the US by end of the year.

And finally, Instagram is also adding some new incentive elements to its Stars donation system for creators, which is specifically focused on providing payment options for live-stream broadcasters in the app. 

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“Starting this week, creators on Instagram are eligible to earn an extra payout when they meet certain milestones while using badges in Live, such as going Live with another account, while Facebook is also launching Stars Challenges. Creators in the program can earn payouts from Facebook in the form of free Stars if they meet certain milestones, such as broadcasting a certain number of hours or earning a set number of Stars within a designated time period.”

Facebook Stars

The new options will essentially provide an extra, gamified element to the Stars monetization process, which will provide financial incentive for creators to stream more often. Which is good for Facebook/Instagram, in that it’ll ensure that more content is made available on their platforms, while it also provides another way for creators to make money, a win-win.

Well, probably not a win-win. No doubt Facebook will benefit more from having more content, and this won’t tip the tables in favor of the creator entirely. But then again, the incentives here look okay. In the above screenshot, it notes that one task would reward the creator with $150 bonus if they earn 5,000 Stars. 5,000 Stars is equivalent to around $50 currently, so that’s actually pretty valuable.

The push, then, is more designed to get more streamers sharing more often, and if they end up earning real money from their efforts, that will likely see them broadcasting more content, and will make Facebook and Instagram a more definitive partner in their process.

Which is the real aim of all of these options. Despite Facebook’s many efforts to thwart it, TikTok continues to rise, and while Facebook hasn’t been able to crush the short video app with its sheer scale, it can still provide better monetization and incentive options, which may well keep users from straying, and bring more top creators over to Instagram instead.

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Worth noting that Instagram is also working on a new ‘Bonuses’ payment system for top Reels creators, which sounds similar to Snapchat’s Spotlight payment process, which currently sees Snap paying out $1 million per day to the top Spotlight creators, in order to further boost interest in the option.

TikTok is still working out its monetization tools, and if, at some stage, more creators realize that they’d be better off making money from their content in other apps instead, that could become a key tipping point for the platform, if it can’t provide similar, or better, incentives.

Which is where Instagram is headed with these new monetization tools, heaping more pressure on the competition, while also bringing more users to its apps.

Will that work?

It’ll certainly prove a strong lure for some, and it’ll be interesting to see if these options do indeed provide enough incentive to significantly boost Instagram’s creator standing.

Socialmediatoday.com

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Meta Publishes New Guide to the Various Security and Control Options in its Apps

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Meta Publishes New Guide to the Various Security and Control Options in its Apps


Meta has published a new set of safety tips for journalists to help them protect themselves in the evolving online connection space, which, for the most part, also apply to all users more broadly, providing a comprehensive overview of the various tools and processes that it has in place to help people avoid unwanted attention online.

The 32-page guide is available in 21 different languages, and provides detailed overviews of Meta’s systems and profile options for protection and security, with specific sections covering Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp.

The guide begins with the basics, including password protections and enabling two-factor authentication.

It also outlines tips for Page managers in securing their business profiles, while there are also notes on what to do if you’ve been hacked, advice for protection on Messenger and guidance on bullying and harassment.

Meta security guide

For Instagram, there are also general security tips, along with notes on its comment moderation tools.

Meta security guide

While for WhatsApp, there are explainers on how to delete messages, how to remove messages from group chats, and details on platform-specific data options.

Meta security guide

There are also links to various additional resource guides and tools for more context, providing in-depth breakdowns of when and how to action the various options.

It’s a handy guide, and while there are some journalist-specific elements included, most of the tips do apply to any user, so it could well be a valuable resource for anyone looking to get a better handle on your various privacy tools and options.

Definitely worth knowing either way – you can download the full guide here.

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Twitter bans account linked to Iran leader over video threatening Trump

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Twitter bans account linked to Iran leader over video threatening Trump


Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei meets with relatives of slain commander Qasem Soleimani ahead of the second anniverary of his death in a US drone strike in Iraq – Copyright POOL/AFP/File Tom Brenner

Twitter said Saturday it had permanently suspended an account linked to Iran’s supreme leader that posted a video calling for revenge for a top general’s assassination against former US president Donald Trump.

“The account referenced has been permanently suspended for violating our ban evasion policy,” a Twitter spokesperson told AFP.

The account, @KhameneiSite, this week posted an animated video showing an unmanned aircraft targeting Trump, who ordered a drone strike in Baghdad two years ago that killed top Iranian commander General Qassem Soleimani.

Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s main accounts in various languages remain active. Last year, another similar account was suspended by Twitter over a post also appearing to reference revenge against Trump.

The recent video, titled “Revenge is Definite”, was also posted on Khamenei’s official website.

According to Twitter, the company’s top priority is keeping people safe and protecting the health of the conversation on the platform.

The social media giant says it has clear policies around abusive behavior and will take action when violations are identified.

As head of the Quds Force, the foreign operations arm of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, Soleimani was the architect of its strategy in the Middle East.

He and his Iraqi lieutenant were killed by a US drone strike outside Baghdad airport on January 3, 2020.

Khamenei has repeatedly promised to avenge his death.

On January 3, the second anniversary of the strike, the supreme leader and ultraconservative President Ebrahim Raisi once again threatened the US with revenge.

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Trump’s supporters regularly denounce the banning of the Republican billionaire from Twitter, underscoring that accounts of several leaders considered authoritarian by the United States are allowed to post on the platform.



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Major US TV service dumps pro-Trump channel OAN

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Major US TV service dumps pro-Trump channel OAN


Former US president Donald Trump regularly called on Chanel Rion of OAN (pictured April 2020) during his press briefings – Copyright AFP/File STR

Subscription television service DirecTV has decided not to renew its contract with One America News Network (OAN), an ultra-conservative, conspiratorial US channel that backs former US president Donald Trump.

“We informed (OAN owner) Herring Networks that, following a routine internal review, we do not plan to enter into a new contract when our current agreement expires,” a spokesman for DirecTV told AFP Friday.

The deal is due to expire in April, according to a source familiar with the matter.

DirecTV, which is owned by US telecom giant AT&T, did not provide further details for its decision.

OAN is one of the new ultra-conservative players in television news that are trying to nibble away at the market share of Fox News.

Like Newsmax or Real America’s Voice, they refused to recognize Donald Trump’s defeat in the November 2020 presidential election, instead relaying unsubstantiated conspiracy theories about electoral fraud that were propagated by the former president and his supporters.

In mid-November 2020, for instance, OAN presenter Christina Bobb accused the Democratic Party of preparing “a coup” against Trump.

Trump himself invited his supporters to switch to OAN and Newsmax, and more and more leading Republican figures are appearing on the channels.

OAN saw its audiences climb in the wake of the election, but DirecTV’s decision is a serious blow because it is the channel’s largest distributor, according to US media.

OAN did not immediately respond to a request for comment from AFP.

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A year ago, when Trump supporters stormed Congress in an attempt to stop the certification of Democrat Joe Biden’s victory, OAN and Newsmax denounced — without any supporting evidence — what they called the infiltration of small groups of ultra-leftists into the crowd of Trump loyalists.



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