Instagram has switched on a new way for creators to make money, kicking off a test of subscriptions for the social platform in the U.S.
Mark Zuckerberg, co-founder of Facebook and chairman/CEO of parent company Meta, announced the test in a post Wednesday. “This will help creators earn more by offering benefits to their most engaged followers like access to exclusive Lives and Stories,” he wrote. “I’m excited to keep building tools for creators to make a living doing creative work and to put these tools in more creators’ hands soon.”
Currently, the Instagram Subscriptions is being tested with a handful of U.S.-based creators, who can set a monthly price of their choice and unlock a “subscribe” button on their profile. The program will let creators select from eight different price points, starting at 99 cents/month and ranging up to $99.99/month.
The company identified a few of the U.S. Instagram creators who are part of the subscriptions test, including @alanchikinchow, @sedona._, @alizakelly, @kelseylynncook, @elliottnorris, @jordanchiles, @jackjerry, @bunnymichael, @donalleniii and @lonnieiiv.
According to the company, Instagram Subscriptions will let creators offer certain content only to subscribers, include livestreams, IG Stories and subscriber badges (which will display next to comments and messages so creators can easily identify their subscribers).
In 2020, Facebook launched a subscriptions program. Last year, Zuckerberg announced that the company would not collect any fees from creators on Facebook subscriptions purchases until 2023 at the earliest, and this will also apply to Instagram Subscriptions.
As of December 2021, Facebook Subscriptions creators can download emails of new subscribers (who have agreed to share their email addresses) so they can maintain a relationship off-platform. Creators also can now use a personalized link to promote their subscription that allows them to keep 100% of the money they earn, excluding taxes.
Zuckerberg previously announced a plan to pay out $1 billion to creators on Facebook and Instagram through the end of 2022. As part of that, select Facebook Subscriptions creators were invited to participate in a bonus program that rewarded them for adding new subscribers.
Adam Mosseri, head of Instagram, outlined the elements of the Instagram Subscriptions test in a short video post: