Facebook-owned Instagram is making a bigger play for creators as platforms compete over e-commerce superstars. On the first day of Instagram’s first Creator Week today, Facebook CEO and co-founder Mark Zuckerberg appeared during the live event to announce a series of new tools creators can use on Instagram to make more money from the purchases they’re driving for brands.
The news comes as the social platforms—TikTok, Pinterest, Snapchat, YouTube and Twitter—are increasingly leaning into e-commerce and using creators to drive those tools as they become an important as part of brands’ marketing strategies.
“Our goal is to be the best platform for creators like you to make a living,” said Zuckerberg during the three-day livestreamed event addressing the approximately 5,000 influencers invited to Creator Week. “And if you have an idea that you want to share with the world, you should be able to create it and get it out there easily and simply—across Facebook and Instagram—and then earn money for your work.”
The first is a native affiliate tool Instagram is testing in the next few weeks that will allow creators to earn commissions on purchases made from their posts. Affiliate posts on Instagram will be labeled “Eligible for Commission” so platform users know when their purchases will directly support creators. Brands, rather than the platform, will be the ones to set commission rates for the posts.
An Instagram spokesperson says the platform is already working with several beauty brands ahead of the launch of the new affiliate tool, including Sephora, Benefit Cosmetics, Kopari Beauty, Mac Cosmetics and Pat McGrath Labs. Beauty brands like these have seen a massive lift in e-commerce sales through the use of Instagram creators; the new tool will put a little more power in the hands of creators to take a larger percentage of direct sales. However, it could change how brands approach influencer contracts and fees.