Instagram announce new tools for creators to make money from their content

Updated: May 12, 2021

The head of Instagram Adam Mosseri went live with Mark Zuckerberg to talk about adding more tools to help Instagram creators make more money from their audience, brands and their content

They outlined three features:

  1. Creator shops

  2. Affiliates

  3. Creator marketplace

Creator shops

Just like a business Instagram profile, they want to allow creators to be able to sell their own products to their audience, not just from other brands. Everything from merchandise to physical products. Right now creators with a creator profile on Instagram can't set up a shop like a business profile can, so if they have merchandise or they sell a limited product, they have to advertise, send people to the link in bio or use the stories swipe up if they have over 10,000 followers or are verified.

“We see a lot of creators setting up shops too, and one part of being a content creator business model is you create great content, and then you can sell stuff, and so having creator shops is awesome.”

Similar to YouTube merchandise shelf that allows you to have a merchandise row under your videos, they partnered up with Teespring to make this happen.

You must meet the following criteria to be eligible for the YouTube merchandise shelf:

  • ​Are in the YouTube Partner Program

  • Have more than 10,000 subscribers

  • Have no Community Guidelines strikes

There are no details as to if there is any criteria for having a shop as a creator but we can assume it'll be the same as a business profile, you'll need a website with Squarespace, Shopify, Wix or Woo Commerce and others as well as following their commerce guidelines about the type of products they are permitted to sell.


Instagram also want you to get a cut from what you sell for brands or what you recommend. This will make it very easy for brands and creators to work together, probably without a lot of emails back and forth.

"[Creators] should be able to get a cut of the sales of things that they're recommending, and we should build up an affiliate recommendation marketplace to enable that to all happen.”

Presently most creator deals are done off-platform, and without Instagram or Facebook's involvement but they want to improve on that, by providing a new, built-in framework, which will simplify brand partnerships and make it easier to make money.

Also removing a maybe strenuous ,long negotiation process by simply having creators sign up to become an affiliate for a business and the business can approve that very easily with a flat rate and terms.

Creator marketplace

Instagram also want to make it easier for brands and creators to collaborate. A marketplace creates transparency for everyone, brands will be able to search for relevant creators to collaborate with as well see collaborations that the creator has done and all the metrics associated with it.

Right now, there is no place to search for relevant creators for your brand partnership. This will probably eventually lead to Facebook/ Instagram only allowing businesses to create brand partnerships via their marketplace as not going through them undercuts their ad business, in short they don't get a cut, that's why they allow businesses to promote the post of the creator they collaborated with, to get more reach using that creative and creator.

They want to own the process and also get a cut of the revenue, it doesn't benefit then to allow negotiations and transactions to happen off their platform.

The marketplace is great for transparency, flagging bad creators and brands as well as levelling the playing field on who gets the paid what.

Creators middle class

They want to create a creators middle class. Not a world where all the big creators get huge sums and the rest get crumbs.

I think it’s a new era for Instagram and creators, it’s growing up and now becoming a place where you’ll be able to make a living much more easier