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Instagram Launches ‘Thank You Hour’ Sticker and Story to Share Appreciation During COVID-19 Pandemic

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Instagram has launched a new ‘Thank You Hour’ initiative, which will see Stories frames that include the new ‘Thank You Hour’ sticker added to a collective Story that showcases the various things that people are appreciative for amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Instagram Thank You Hour

As explained by Instagram:

“Today we’re launching Thank You Hour, a sticker in stories that lets you show gratitude for what’s helping you through this time. Use the sticker and your photo or video will be added to a shared Instagram story at 7 p.m. your time where friends can see your thanks.”

The collective Thank You Hour story will respect existing privacy settings, so your Story content won’t be visible to everybody in the app. But if you add the new sticker, it will be shown to all of your connections in a new shared Thank You Hour story, which will be made available at 7pm local time each day.

It’s the latest of Instagram’s cause-related stickers, which are designed to provide more ways for users to engage around certain subjects, and share their support for the same via their Stories.

Instagram’s already added two other cause stickers amid the COVID-19 lockdowns – a ‘Thanks Health Heroes’ sticker to pay tribute to healthcare workers, and a ‘Stay Home’ sticker, which similarly sees content added to a collective ‘Stay Home’ so people can share their experiences.

Instagram Stay Home sticker

It’s a simple way to help Instagram users rally around certain causes, and through this type of sharing, it could also help to communicate key messages, and encourage participation in COVID-19 mitigation efforts.

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Going on the medical evidence, COVID-19 doesn’t pose a major health risk for those under 40 years of age, but it can be fatal for the elderly, or for people with certain pre-existing conditions. That’s meant that some younger people have taken a more lax approach to containment measures – but the problem that’s emerged more recently is that many people are asymptomatic, meaning that they may have contracted, and be spreading COVID-19 without their knowledge, even if, for them, it has no impact.

That poses a significant problem for containment – which is why it’s vital that everyone respects the advice from health professionals and maintains social distancing and quarantine measures, even if they personally feel fine and are in a low-risk category. 

This is where Instagram can play an important role. The majority of Instagram’s user base is under the age of 34, and as such, they likely don’t consider COVID-19 to be a significant threat to them. But they may well be facilitating further spread – by providing more ways for users to share their personal experiences, and to call on each other to participate in mitigation efforts, that can help to reinforce key messages, with these prompts coming from the people that they know and trust, as opposed to more abstract government and health authority messaging. 

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It may seem like a relatively small measure in the broader scheme, but research has shown that socially reinforced messaging – i.e. messages that show that your friends have participated – can carry significant weight, and prompt increased action as a result. 

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That’s why Instagram is looking for ways to add in new cause-based stickers and Stories like this, while such initiatives also provide an outlet for people to share and relate while socially isolated.

Socialmediatoday.com

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TikTok Launches New ‘Branded Mission’ Creator Monetization and UGC Promotion Process

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TikTok Launches New 'Branded Mission' Creator Monetization and UGC Promotion Process

TikTok’s looking to make it easier for creators to make money from their clips via a new program that it’s calling ‘Branded Mission’, which will enable creators to take part in what’s essentially branded content challenges, with the brand then able to select from the submitted clips for their promotional campaigns.

As explained by TikTok:

“To make it easier for brands to tap into the creative power of TikTok communities and co-create authentic branded content that resonates with users, we’re launching Branded Mission. Branded Mission is an industry-first ad solution that enables advertisers to crowdsource authentic content from creators on TikTok, turn top-performing videos into ads, and improve brand affinity with media impressions.”

As outlined in the above video, the process will enable brands to post challenges, which creators with over 1k followers will then be able to participate in.

“TikTok creators can decide what Branded Missions they’re inspired by and choose to participate in the Mission. Brands will select their favorite original creative videos and amplify them through promoted ad traffic.”

The chosen creators then get a cash payment, though the payment amounts, at least at this stage, won’t vary based on individual video performance.

Instead, each Mission will list earnings potential, based on how much the brand is willing to pay.

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Allocate more cash and you’ll pique the interest of more users, expanding the potential of tapping into a viral hit.

The option will broaden the creative options for brands, and with organic-styled content performing best on the platform, it could open up major new possibilities for marketers looking for ways to tap into the app.

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It’ll also provide TikTok with another critical revenue-share element. Clearly the app of the moment, if TikTok wants to maximize its opportunities, it needs to ensure that its top creators get paid – because with more lucrative monetization offers available on other platforms, it logically makes sense that big-name stars will follow the cash, and focus on those platforms instead.

But monetizing short-form video is harder than longer content, which is why TikTok is also rolling out 10-minute clips, and emphasizing live-streaming, as a means to drive more money-making opportunities.

Branded Mission is another step in this direction, which will ideally provide a more direct link between creating content in your own style and making money, without having to incorporate merchandise sales or arrange your own affiliate deals.

Interestingly, Meta is trying out similar on Instagram, where product tags were recently expanded to all users.

Instagram product tags

Creators don’t get paid for adding these tags, not yet at least, but you can see how Meta could eventually take a similar approach to provide creators with more revenue opportunities.

For TikTok, the process could make it much easier to bring in cash for your uploads, expanding well beyond the Creator Fund, which top creators have already been highly critical of.

You will, of course, need to create specific, themed videos, as opposed to YouTube, where you upload what you like and switch on ads. But it’s a fairly distanced relationship from the sponsor brands, which reduces management workload, while also providing new content prompts.

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It’s a good idea, and as more and more brands look to tap into the app – especially as it surges towards 1.5 billion users – you can bet that it’ll be a popular option for a range of ad partners.

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TikTok says that Branded Mission is now in beta testing, and is available to brands in more than a dozen markets. The option will be made available in more regions throughout the year.

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