Social media mentor, Instagram, is making big steps for musicians to get income through their platform.
Instagram has announced that they are actively planning for musicians to earn money through their platform.
Instagram, which works on various concepts such as on a virtual store where products can be sold and a fee payment mechanism during live broadcasts, will also help musicians to reach more people by making them stand out on digital music platforms such as Spotify and Pandora.
Perry Bashkoff, the music director of Instagram, explains the ongoing mutual relationship with musicians, by stating: “Almost every time we come together with musicians, our conversations come to the subject of how we can increase the rate of listening to music, how we can get more followers, why our followers are decreasing.”
These questions became even much more important when pandemic conditions led musicians to perform on small virtual stages. Celebrating its 10th anniversary last October, Instagram grew significantly in 2020, like many other digital platforms. According to the latest data, more than 1 billion people use the platform every month.
As it is known, Facebook, which includes Instagram, took a step that will allow musicians to make money from their live broadcasts by expanding its feature known as ‘sending stars’ last April. Twitch, one of the digital platforms where artists have shown great interest in the pandemic process, has developed a system where users perform their performances can receive payments from their followers during the broadcast, similarly, Bandcamp also has a model that allows 653 million dollars to be transferred directly from music lovers to artists by waiving commission deductions in digital music sales last year.
However, Bashkoff states that the plan they are working on Instagram will be specific model for the platform. The platform has recently become such an important tool for musicians that rap artist 6ix9ine, who was released from prison in September, had a 13-minute performance on Instagram and the broadcast was reached up to by 2 million people. On a hand, DJ D-Nice gained 100,000 virtual fans, while Miley Cyrus interviewed Elton John and Senator Elizabeth Warren on her Instagram show “Bright Minded”.
“I can’t really count how much we talked with the artists upon how important live broadcasts are. Afterwards, we all saw the importance of this with our own eyes after the pandemic. Some artists managed to overcome this successfully, and we made one-on-one meetings with others to give them the necessary information to benefit from it.
Many artists are starting turn over a new leaf. When physical performances come back to the agenda with normalization, the question is important whether there will be an expanded digital practice area or a different method where artists will continue to stay in touch with their audiences and followers they have acquired in this process. Our production and developer team rethinks every detail on how we can better support our artists, fans and user communities in this new phase.”
Bashkoff points out with his statements that when the world regains its normal flow, the virtual ties in the artist-listener axis will continue.
The highlights from the plan Instagram is working on, are as follows:
Direct Payments From Audience
The badge system, introduced by the platform shortly before the end of the year, has an efficient potential where music lovers can pay during the live broadcast, who they are following. The names of Instagram users who buy badges during the live broadcast become visible on the list of ‘badged fans’ by the content creator, so that the artists can announce the names of their followers during the broadcast.
Bashkoff predicts that this type of interaction will be more prominent globally in 2021, although only a limited number of artists have used this feature so far. One of Bashkoff’s important notes at this point is that openly asking for money from people who barely make a living under pandemic conditions is perceived as a kind of insensitivity by music lovers. High-level artists may be holding back a bit from this for now, considering this possibility.
Virtual Store – Easy to Sell Products
Instagram persistently continues to maintain improvements that will encourage purchases made on the platform. The platform’s focus for musicians in this regard is to make it as easy as to purchase music by fans to buy any other product on Instagram.
Bashkoff’s statement on this issue is as follows: “We started to make arrangements in our virtual store integration in order to place the sales of various products that will provide musicians with music, especially musical works, in a scalable scheme. To make it more accessible, we changed the interface of the application and brought the shopping icon right next to the Reels icon. Additional enhancements to our shopping function will be one of our biggest focal points in 2021. ”
The Rise of Reels
The creative and user-centered sharing trend that exploded with TikTok has become more popular with the Reels feature recently included in Instagram. According to the information shared by Bashkoff, the new method of creating trends, discovering new songs and creating more collective content with each other that is a highly popular new method for the music used in Reels shares, those will be on a dashboard that will regularly inform the artists.
From the perspective of music publishing, more and more artists are introducing their new works to their followers for the first time through Reels. Combined with the ‘Instagram Music’ feature, this type of music-focused digital launches mean that music lovers can listen to newly released music 24 or 48 hours before they put on the market.
Bashkoff emphasizing the potential of Reels: “Reels was our first type of sharing to allow non-consecutive users to view each other’s content. When we think about the music industry, it offers a great opportunity to discover and bring new talents, new content and new trends to life. However, Reels is not a place for direct promotion. You don’t want to share anything created to be consumed like snippets from your music video. Aware of the inconveniences of sharing the same things over and over again, artists are discovering ways to use Reels in different ways than TikTok and Snapchat, more and more creatively. Artists who successfully implement this saw a growth of 30% to 50% in their number of followers within weeks ”
Online Music Production
If we look at the design, there is no mechanism such as a landing page or a welcome page in Instagram. However, the platform is working on a variety of ways to make certain accounts available to musicians, including the @Instagram account, which currently has 383 million followers, for musicians to be known, seen or heard more.
“We are developing ideas for announcing whatever is happening in music to the masses. It is not yet clear whether we will do a separate programming that will include artists, or will we do this through some accounts we currently have and manage, but we are striving to make these ideas more concrete in 2021, especially in the first half of the year. In the industry, we believe that transforming the platform into a “real estate” for content producers will have a more significant result than the practices we previously saw in the form of Apple homepage, Spotify takeover, and YouTube playlist. More than anything, I would like to make a talk with an artist who is developing, ‘Keep producing such wonderful things, and let’s try to offer you new features that will benefit you.’ We want to help musicians grow their followers, develop their work and ultimately create a revenue mechanism from it. ” concluded Bashkoff.