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Meta Launches New Creator Monetization Initiatives, Including More Reels Payments and NFTs

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Meta Launches New Creator Monetization Initiatives, Including More Reels Payments and NFTs

Meta’s adding some new creator monetization options, including new metaverse and Web3-aligned options, as it looks to build the next platform for creative expression and engagement, and ensure that it keeps its top stars posting to its apps into the future.

First off, Meta’s testing a new Creator Marketplace on Instagram, where creators will be able to get discovered by brands for potential partnership opportunities.

As you can see in the first screenshot above, the new Creator Marketplace will enable creators to list their interests and the types of content that they want to create, which will then help brands find potential matches for their campaigns.

Meta also has its Brand Collabs Manager, which essentially facilitates the same, but this new process will be more Instagram-specific, providing another avenue for IG creators to connect with opportunities.

Meta’s also expanding its Reels Play Bonus program to more creators on Facebook, which will also soon enable creators to cross-post their Instagram Reels to Facebook and monetize them within both apps.

Meta launched its Reels Play Bonus program in September last year as part of a broader push to provide more incentive to top creators to continue posting their Reels in the app. And given that Reels is now its fastest-growing content type, it makes sense to lean into this where it can, in an effort to stop its top stars from drifting to TikTok and YouTube instead.

On a similar note, Meta’s also expanding its Facebook Stars creator donation process to all eligible creators ‘so that more people can start earning from their Reels, live, or VOD videos’.

Facebook Stars are essentially a virtual currency that can be purchased in various bundles, which then enables Facebook users to allocate them to creators via live-streams (audio and video).

Up till now, in order to be eligible to receive stars, users have had to manage a Gaming Video Creator Page, have more than 100 followers and stream game content on at least 2 days, for at least 4 cumulative hours, in one consecutive 14 day period.

But more recently, Meta has also begun expanding Stars to Reels as well, which will eventually open up more opportunities for more creators to earn through the program.  

Stars are available in most regions, though there are some restrictions.

Meta’s also adding ‘interoperable subscriptions’, which will enable creators to give their paying subscribers on other platforms access to subscriber-only Facebook Groups (you can see an example of this in the third image above).

And then there are NFTs, and Meta’s initial moves on digital collectibles.

After launching an initial test of NFT display options on Instagram back in May, Meta is now expanding the test pool for the option, while it’s also planning to bring NFT display to Facebook as well, ‘starting with a small group of US creators’.

Instagram NFTs

NFTs remain a questionable element, with some viewing them as the future of digital collaboration and community, and others seeing them as a get rich scheme, with limited value. I’m not sure that the current NFT profile pictures will remain a thing in the next stage, but the market for digital assets is definitely set to increase, in the form of avatar clothing, in-game items, virtual objects, etc.

But, with NFT NYC being held this week, it’s clear that interest remains in digital profile images, which could see it become an enduring trend.

Finally, Meta also notes that it will hold off on implementing any revenue share processes on Facebook and Instagram until 2024, which means that creators will be able to claim 100% of any funds raised via Events, Subscriptions, Badges, and Facebook Bulletin.

These are some valuable additions, in a range of areas, and as competition for creative talent heats up, it’s important for Meta to keep evolving its offerings in-step, to ensure that it doesn’t lose out to TikTok and YouTube in this space.

Because Meta will need these creators to fuel its metaverse vision, and if it loses them now, they may not come back. That will be the next stage of its process, with more funding for Horizon Worlds creators and those working on VR elements.

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Meta Soars by Most in Decade, Adding $100 Billion in Value

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Meta Soars by Most in Decade, Adding $100 Billion in Value

Correction: February 2, 2023 This article has been revised to reflect the following correction: An earlier version of this article misstated how much Meta expected to spend on its deal with the virtual reality start-up Within. It is $400 million, not $400 billion. Meta’s stock surged on Thursday …

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Twitter’s Cancelling Free Access to its API, Which Will Shut Down Hundreds of Apps

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Twitter’s Cancelling Free Access to its API, Which Will Shut Down Hundreds of Apps

Well, this is certainly problematic.

Twitter has announced that, as of February 9th, it’s cutting off free access to its API, which is the access point that many, many apps, bot accounts, and other tools use to function.

That means that a heap of Twitter analytics apps, management tools, schedulers, automated updates – a range of key info and insight options will soon cease to function. Which seems like the sort of thing that, if you were Twitter, you’d want to keep on your app.

But that’s not really how Twitter 2.0 is looking to operate – in a bid to rake in as much revenue as absolutely possible, in any way that it can, Twitter will now look to charge all of these apps and tools. But most, I’d hazard a guess, will simply cease to function.

The bigger business apps already pay for full API access – your Hootsuite’s and your Sprout Social’s – so they’ll likely be unaffected. But it could stop them from offering free plans, which would have a big impact on their business models.

The announcement follows Twitter’s recent API change which cut off a heap of Twitter posting tools, in order, seemingly, to stop users accessing the platform through a third-party UI. 

Now, even more Twitter tools will go extinct, a broad spread of apps and functions that contribute to the real-time ecosystem that Twitter has become. Their loss, if that’s what happens, will have big impacts on overall Twitter activity.

On the other hand, some will see this as another element in Twitter’s crackdown on bots, which Twitter chief Elon Musk has made a personal mission to eradicate. Musk has taken some drastic measures to kill off bots, some of which are having an impact, but Musk himself has also admitted that such efforts are reducing overall platform engagement

This, too, could be a killer in this respect

It’ll also open the door to Twitter competitors, as many automated update apps will switch to other platforms. This relates to things like updates on downtime from video games, weather apps, and more. There are also tools like GIF generators and auto responders – there’s a range of tools that could now look for a new home on Mastodon, or some other Twitter replicant. 

In this respect, it seems like a flawed move, which is also largely ignorant of how the developer community has facilitated Twitter’s growth. 

But Elon and Co. are going to do things their own way, whether outside commentators agree or not – and maybe this is actually a path to gaining new Twitter data customers, and boosting the company’s income. 

But I doubt it.

If there are any third-party Twitter apps that you use, it’ll be worth checking in to see if they’re impacted before next week.



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Meta ‘Year of Efficiency’ call from Zuckerberg was what Street needed

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Meta 'Year of Efficiency' call from Zuckerberg was what Street needed

Mark Zuckerberg, chief executive officer of Meta Platforms Inc., center, departs from federal court in San Jose, Calif., on Dec. 20, 2022.

David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty Images

With one simple slogan, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg temporarily quelled investor discontent with his company’s multibillion-dollar investment into the futuristic metaverse.

“Our management theme for 2023 is the ‘Year of Efficiency’ and we’re focused on becoming a stronger and more nimble organization,” Zuckerberg said as part of the release of Meta’s fourth-quarter earnings report.

Following a 64% plunge in Meta’s share price in 2022, Wall Street cheered the report, sending the stock up almost 20%, extending a rally that began late last year. Based on after-hours pricing, Meta is trading at its highest since July.

Growth is not what’s getting investors excited. Meta reported better-than-expected revenue in the fourth quarter, but sales still sank 4% from a year earlier, marking the third straight quarterly decline. And the forecast range for the first quarter suggests that year-over-year revenue could increase, but it could also fall again.

Rather, Zuckerberg’s commitment to cost cuts and efficiency is a sign that increasing profitability is important to Meta, which was known as a growth machine prior to last year’s slump.

“The first 18 years I think we grew it 20%, 30% compound or a lot more every year,” Zuckerberg said on the earnings call. “And then obviously that changed very dramatically in 2022, where our revenue was negative for growth, for the first time in the company’s history.”

In looking to the future, Zuckerberg struck a realistic tone.

“We don’t anticipate that that’s going to continue,” he said, regarding the recent drop in revenue. “But I also don’t think it’s going to go back to the way it was before.”

Meta lowered its estimates for total expenses in 2023 to be in the range of $89 billion to $95 billion, down from its prior outlook of $94 billion to $100 billion. In November, the company announced it would lay off over 11,000 workers, or 13% of its staff.

Zuckerberg said Meta will be more “proactive on cutting projects that aren’t performing or may no longer be crucial” and that it will emphasize “removing layers of middle management to make decisions faster.”

Meta is also reducing spending as it builds new data centers that are intended to be more efficient while still able to power the company’s various artificial intelligence technologies. Capital expenditures are now expected to be in the range of $30 billion to $33 billion for 2023 instead of $34 billion to $37 billion.

Zuckerberg is selling investors on a story they want to hear, acknowledging that the company got bloated and needed more financial discipline. One of Zuckerberg’s top deputies, technology chief Andrew “Boz” Bosworth, wrote a personal essay just a few days ago echoing that sentiment.

Still, Meta has plenty of challenges ahead, in terms of both costs and reviving its core ad business.

Meta’s Reality Labs unit, which is responsible for developing the nascent metaverse, lost $13.7 billion in 2022. Finance chief Susan Li told analysts that the company isn’t planning for any reduction in that unit anytime soon. Zuckerberg still sees it as the company’s future.

Digital advertising, meanwhile, is suffering from a struggling economy, and Li gave no indication that companies are planning to dramatically increase their spending in 2023.

Meta has also yet to recover from Apple’s 2021 iOS privacy update that made it harder to target users with ads. Li said the company has been improving its online advertising system, but Apple’s update is “still certainly an absolute headwind to our revenue number.”

During the question and answer part of the call, Zuckerberg was asked about Meta’s progress in generative artificial intelligence, which has become the latest hot thing in Silicon Valley. His answer indicated that Meta is pursuing opportunities there, but will be cautious in how quickly it proceeds. Running these programs is expensive, and Meta needs to ensure it can develop them affordably, he said.

Zuckerberg said that while Meta is researching how best to incorporate the new technology, he wants “to be careful not to get too ahead of the development of it.”

Correction: Meta’s earnings report and CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s comments occurred after the market close on Wednesday. An earlier version misstated the day.

WATCH: Meta grows in daily active users, shares pop on revenue beat

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