Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Thursday announced that the company is launching a new broadcast chat feature on Instagram called “Channels.”
The feature allows creators to share a post with all their followers in form of a direct message. Channels support text, images, polls, reactions, and more. Zuckerberg announced the feature by starting his own broadcast channel, where he plans to share Meta updates going forward.
Coming to Facebook and Messenger too: Zuckerberg disclosed that the feature is now being tested by creators in the U.S., but would be expanded to Facebook and Messenger in the coming months.
He noted that only creators can post on broadcast channels and that followers only have the ability to react to content and participate in polls.
Also in the coming months, Instagram plans to add more features to broadcast channels, such as the ability to bring other creators into the channel to discuss upcoming collaborations and collect questions for an AMA via question prompts.
The new feature gives creators a new way to update their followers within the app. In the past, creators have usually posted a story to share news and updates with their followers, but they now have the option to use a more direct way to engage with their fans. The feature also lets creators get feedback on certain things and promote their content.
How it works: Once a creator gets access to channels, they can start one from their Instagram inbox.
After sending their first message, their followers will receive a one-time notification to join the channel.
When the channel is live, creators can also encourage their followers to join by using the “join channel” sticker in Stories. Very soon, Creators will be able to pin their channels to their profiles.
All users on the social network can discover broadcast channels and view the content, but only followers who join the channel will receive notifications when the creator posts updates.
Followers can leave or mute broadcast channels at any time and can also control their notifications from creators.
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