Breaking Down Instagram’s New Subscription Feature

January 27, 2022

We’re only one month into 2022 so naturally, Instagram rolled out a huge new update: Subscriptions. Already there seems to be a lot of mixed emotions about this feature. As a social media agency, we can see why many people feel apprehensive about subscriptions, but first, let’s get into what it is. 

What Are IG Subscriptions?

Instagram subscriptions, which are currently being tested on the platform, was created to help creators gain financial support with new opportunities to engage with their followers, or now subscribers. Some of these new opportunities include:

  • New ‘subscribe’ button on Instagram profiles
  • Creators can identify their subscribers with new subscriber badges 
  • Exclusive subscriber-only lives
  • Exclusive subscriber-only stories

Creators will have the freedom to choose their subscription costs between $0.99 and $99.99, according to Social Media Today. If you’re curious to see what subscriptions look like, here’s a list of creators to follow and subscribe to:

Why IG Thinks it Will Benefit Creators

Last summer, Meta announced they would invest $1 billion in creators in 2022. By rolling out subscriptions, Meta hopes to foster an environment where creators can easily make a living using their platform. In writing, this update sounds like a win for creators; they’ll have more control over monetizing content, they gain an opportunity to create more meaningful connections with their subscribers, and the potential to make more money. Unfortunately, we don’t think that will be the case with Instagram subscriptions.

Why We Think Creators Won't Bite

Essentially, this new update is encouraging creators to spend more of their time and energy on Instagram instead of other platforms like TikTok and YouTube. The reason why we’re not convinced you’ll see any creators jumping for joy over subscriptions is that they already feel supported in their careers on other platforms. Instagram is once again late to the game. 

With IG subscriptions, creators will be under greater pressure to create unique content to quickly produce in order to keep their paying subscribers happy. Unfortunately, this will likely lead to burnout for a lot of creators. While we believe Instagram had good intentions with creating subscriptions, we see it creating added stress instead of making creators’ jobs easier. 

As for subscribers, social media has always been a public space to connect and access content from their favorite creators for free. We’re skeptical to believe a lot of Instagram users will start budgeting for a monthly social media subscription. 

What do you think of Instagram subscriptions? Would you pay a monthly subscription for your favorite creator(s)? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below! 

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