Instagram is now paying creators to post Reels on its platform, with some users receiving up to $35,000. The offer comes as TikTok maintains its monopoly on the short-form video market.
The change was announced earlier this year by the Meta-owned company, but TechCrunch reported that it has finally begun to roll out, with multiple creators reporting that they have been approached with offers ranging from as little as $800 for their posts, to as much as $35,000 for a combined 58.31 million views in a month.
Purchasing social media producers for your fledgling site may appear to be a wise decision, especially given the market leader’s massive lead. However, it is unlikely to be a long-term solution. Throwing money down the drain to entice creators won’t work if the users don’t come in large enough numbers to justify the expense.
This is not the first time Instagram has tried this strategy. Snapchat, Pinterest, and YouTube are also paying producers to upload short films on their platforms — but there are only so many people interested in watching short video content to make it profitable. The holes in this strategy have already begun to appear, as Snapchat, the first to offer a paid program, has stopped paying creators on a continuous basis after changing its payout methodology in June – touting the new structure as a more robust package.
In practice, payouts for many people either stopped or became erratic and intermittent at best. “I simply want to know why I’m not getting compensated for my videos,” Caren Babaknia, a Snapchat Spotlight participant this year, told CNBC, with many other producers apparently quitting the platform for richer pastures.
An Instagram spokesman told TechCrunch, “We’re continue to test payouts as we roll them out to additional creators, and expect them to fluctuate while we’re still getting started.” We’ve structured bonuses to assist as many producers as possible in a method that is both practical and results in meaningful earnings. Our long-term goal is for bonuses to become more tailored.” As with Snapchat, creators should not be seduced by the prospect of platform payouts as part of a long-term strategy.