Instagram’s been throwing features and money at its short-form video platform, Reels, for a hot minute now in order to compete with TikTok (which has seen massive success with the format). Its latest attempt to garner popularity: paying creators to use Reels.
Instagram Reels in creators
Instagram is currently testing payments to creators for Reels, reports TechCrunch, referring to them mainly as ‘bonuses’. Big (or big-ish) creators on the platform are offered bonuses if they can hit a certain amount of Reel views within a month. It’s not all-or-nothing though, users will still get paid if they miss their mark, though it’ll be proportional by how much they miss it.
Aside from that, exactly how bonus offers are calculated is pretty vague. A user with around 52,000 followers, Maddy Corbin, was reportedly offered $1,000 for her Reel views that month, but saw bigger pages offered less and smaller pages offered more than her. One creator revealed on Reddit that they were offered $35,000 to get 58 million Reels views by the end of this month. Corbin’s conclusion was that it must be determined by your average Reel views.
Getting involved with bonuses is also a little vague. Instagram outlines that a creator needs to be at least 18 years old, and also needs to meet its monetisation policies. These policies themselves aren’t particularly concrete in their guiding. For example, users apparently need to have a constant and ‘sufficient’ follower base, but Instagram never explicitly states what qualifies as ‘sufficient’.
This kind of ambiguity might seem menial to an outsider, but it can be understandably frustrating for creators who base their livelihoods on the social media platform. Clearly, Instagram has some clearing up to do.
Regardless, it’s a clear push to put its short-form video format on the map, something it’s been trying to do for a while now. Paying for content to boost a new project’s reach in its early stages isn’t something new. But it won’t mean anything in the long run if Reels doesn’t manage to attract a large audience organically.