Getting paid for posting on Instagram is easier than you might imagine. Whether you want to use your influence to leverage a partnership with brands, promote your favorite products on your own, or sell your own goods or services, Instagram is filled with monetization potential.
Partnering with a brand is usually one of the first things people begin to investigate when they become curious about earning money for their IG posts.
Contrary to popular belief, brands aren’t only interested in working with influencers who have hundreds of thousands of followers. Micro-influencers can find partners in all fields who want to promote to smaller and more highly engaged audiences. However, you can command a higher price when you have a wider reach.
According to a recent report of mid-level influencers of audiences between 10,000 and 100,000, the average price of a sponsored post is between $250 and $400. Most of these partnerships are initiated by the brand but many influencers take the initiative and join an influencer network or reach out to brands directly. The smaller your audience, the more likely it is you will need to take the initiative in cultivating partnerships. One way to begin this process is by tagging brands you’d like to work with in posts highlighting their product or service.
Making yourself attractive to brands will take a bit more than just tagging them, however. In addition to having a well-defined brand of your own and understanding your audience, you’ll also need to be posting consistently and using appropriate hashtags to ensure your reach continues to expand. While there isn’t necessarily a best time to post on Instagram, consistency is imperative. To stay at the top of feeds post 1-2 times a day and be sure to engage with anyone who comments.
Finally, don’t overlook the importance of making it easy for brands to contact you. Instagram only gives you one link so make sure it goes to an active site that will showcase what you have to offer. You should also use the available profile real estate to let brands know more about your interests, where you’re located, and your email address to make it easier for them if they want to reach out directly.
Affiliate sales are another way to get paid for your Instagram posts. Instead of waiting for brands to offer to sponsor individual posts, you take control of your earning potential when you become an affiliate. According to recent statistics, affiliate marketing is now a $12 billion a year industry that is experiencing massive growth. For influencers, this means you have greater earning potential as more companies begin exploring this option.
It’s not unusual to see affiliate marketing on YouTube videos, blogs, and in emails. However, the potential for Instagram has been largely underutilized. The Instagram superpower you’ll need to leverage if you want to maximize the amount you are paid for each post is capturing you using or engaging with the item or service you want to promote. Then whenever possible offer your followers a coupon code that will allow them to shop and save while also identifying you as the affiliate responsible for the sale. This prevents the need of referring people back to a link in your bio – although that is also an option!
If the company you’re promoting doesn’t offer a coupon code you can post in the post itself, you can always make your Instagram posts shoppable by utilizing your one link. There are many tools that can make this easier. One popular option (that has a free plan) is Linkin.bio by Later, a service that allows you to automate your Instagram posts. There are many different ways to use this tool, or one like it, to turn your Instagram posts into revenue sources. But for now, let’s focus on affiliate sales.
First, you’ll need to capture your audience’s attention with a stunning image and a post that teases more information if they follow your link. Let them know what they’re looking at and then encourage them to learn more. Your link can then direct them to a blog post with an affiliate link, a YouTube video that gives a demonstration with an affiliate link, or even directly to an item you’ve featured via your affiliate link.
If all of this sounds like a lot of work and you’re only interested in promoting one company, product, or service, place your affiliate link in your bio and reference it as needed in individual posts featuring the offer.
No matter what product or service you choose to promote, be sure you are truly a fan. If not, your followers will quickly begin to feel like they are just there to be your ATM and they will unfollow to declutter their feeds. When you truly love what you’re talking about the sincerity comes through and becomes infectious. Your authentic desire and joy when you talk about, use, and even photograph an item will be what makes your posts truly profitable.
At the core, Instagram is about making personal connections through glimpses into the lives of others. If you have an offering of your own, whether it is a service such as coaching, teaching a class, or a niche boutique of handmade goods, Instagram is an excellent platform for introducing yourself to the world.
The desire for deeper intimacy is prevalent in today’s online world and one way to let people feel like they’re getting to know the real you is to post images of yourself, your daily life, and the things that inspire you. As people get to know you they will be able to tell if your offering is right for them. Make offers to help them get to know you, give them behind the scenes details, go live in your story, and link to your free offerings. All of these help build your authority and foster audience trust.
How you curate your feed shouldn’t be formulaic. What works for others won’t necessarily work for you. They are building content to attract their ideal customer, so unless you are targeting the same demographic it is better to cultivate a feed that accurately reflects what you want to share with the world. Whether you’re all about raw food, indie music, backpacking through the wilderness, teaching entrepreneurs to build funnels, high fashion, or extravagant travel it should be clear from what you post and the way the images are composed.
Take the time to really think about the visual story viewers will experience when they see a single post and when they (hopefully!) click through to your feed to see more. Does it evoke a sense of who you are and what you offer? Would your ideal client see your story and instantly fall in love without ever reading a word? If so, you’re using Instagram to promote yourself perfectly. That’s the key to getting paid for posts that are promoting you. You have to make the connection to make the sale.
Instagram is a visual storyteller’s dream. If you find it easy to convey your thoughts, dreams, and everyday life via photographs, there is no reason you can’t turn your Instagram feed into a passive source of income. Choose the revenue model that is the best fit for your feed or needs and begin implementing today.