After launching virtual gifts for U.S.-based Reels creators back in February, Instagram has now announced that Reels creators in many more regions will be eligible to receive gifts in the app, via a dedicated button on their clips.
Gifts provide another revenue generation option for Reels creators, with sticker-type gifts available in varying purchase amounts.
And over the next few weeks, they’ll become active in a lot more places:
As you can see in the top overview, creators that are eligible to receive gifts will have a “Send Gift” option appear as an overlay on their Reels clips.
Using this, viewers are able to send gifts to creators of varying cash amounts.
Users pay for gifts in Stars, which is Meta’s own in-app currency, but effectively, gifts are currently available from anywhere up to $5.99 each.
As explained by Instagram:
“Gifts on Instagram allow you to show appreciation to eligible Reels creators by sending virtual gifts. When you buy stars to send gifts to creators, those creators may earn money if they have agreed to Instagram's Gifts Terms of Service.”
How much money?
“Viewers can purchase stars and use them to send you gifts on Instagram. Instagram will then provide you with a revenue share from your reels that received gifts on a monthly basis equal to $.01 USD for every star received from fans.”
So if someone sends you a gift that costs 100 stars, for example, you’ll get the equivalent of $1 USD. Which is not a huge amount, but it all adds up, and for big accounts, with a lot of fans, it could deliver a fairly good chunk of additional direct income for your creations each month.
Though there are limits and conditions.
Creators are only eligible for a payout when their overall balance reaches $25, though that does also include earnings from IG’s other monetization programs. You also need a connected account to receive payouts, or Meta will just keep the money (if you don’t activate a connected account after 6 months).
In order to be eligible to receive Stars, creators need to have over 5,000 followers in the app, and they need to have a professional account. You also need to be over 18, and be in accordance with IG’s monetization terms.
If you meet these requirements, and you’re in one of the above-noted regions, you’ll soon have another way to make money from your Reels clips.
I mean, it’s probably not a game-changer for most, but it is something, and it could add an extra kick to help keep top users posting to the app.
And with the current NPC trend gaining traction in live-streams, creators are becoming increasingly aware of the potential of in-stream gifts, which could see it become more of a focus.
Meta might need to up the value of stickers to make this really effective in this respect, but it could be the first step towards expanding the incentives for creators in the app.