3 Ways to Make Money On Instagram (Even If You Only Have 1,000 Followers)
If you have a following of at least a couple thousand followers, then you can start making money on Instagram. You have influence because of the content you’ve shared, and that influence is going to help your financial life. However, it’s not just the amount of followers you’ve earned that matters.
What truly matters is that you have high engagement. If your followers interact with you—they like, comment, DM you, and so on—then it’s more possible to make money than if you have 20,000 fake and bought followers who don’t engage. It would help if you had a real influence on real people.
That said, let’s talk about how you can make money on Instagram.
1. Do sponsored posts for brands
Because you’ve become an influencer—as in, you have an online reputation and thousands of because of what you’ve shared on Instagram—you’re a trusted figure. Your followers take everything you say into account, and they’ll usually listen to you. You have something that even some of the most popular brands don’t, because at the end of the day, you’re a person, and they’re a business.
Brands want to partner with you to reach the people who trust you because they know those followers are likely to buy from you. While having a large audience matters to them because they can reach more people, they want to see that you connect with your followers and that they engage.
Depending on the agreement you come to with a brand, you’ll promote their product on a post, a video, or a story. They might offer you a free product, a service, a fee, exposure, or more.
So, how do you find brands to work with? If you’re big enough, you won’t have to find a brand—they’ll find you. However, if you want to take action now, check out:
Be sure to work with brands your followers will love, and brands that correlate with your own.
Finally, how much do you charge? According to Shopify, “In a survey of 5,000 influencers, around 42% said they charged $200 to $400 per post—just to give you an idea of what some brands are willing to pay, and how to negotiate based on the cards you’re holding.”
2. Become an affiliate
When you become an affiliate for a brand, you promote their product on Instagram, and if your followers buy that product through your affiliate link, then you receive a payment for every product sold under that link. This way, you both make money.
You’ve probably seen this on Instagram before. An influencer takes a picture or talks about a product, and then they tell their followers they can get 15% off if they use their code. The code will usually have the influencer’s name and a number, which represents the discount number (i.e., Stormlikes15). Coupon codes are another form of affiliate marketing.
When you become an affiliate, you receive a coupon code or a link to share with your followers. If one of your follower’s purchases because of you, but they Googled the website instead of using your link, you don’t get paid.
How do you do this? It would be best if you found an affiliate niche that goes with the personal brand you’ve established. For example, you don’t want to sign up under a fitness program if you’re a fashion influencer. Stick to your niche.
You find an affiliate marketplace by Googling it. With a simple, “Fashion affiliate programs 2019,” or “Entrepreneur affiliate programs,” search, you’ll find what you need.
3. Make and sell something (or offer your services)
Fans are usually willing to buy from the people they follow and truly support. Just think of your closet or the books in your bookshelf—you might have a t-shirt with the name of your favorite band or ten books from your favorite author. You may have even bought these without thinking twice about it because you love them so much.
Among those thousands of followers you have, you have a significant number of hardcore fans. That’s why you should consider making and selling a product, or offering your services. This one could take a lot of hard work, but if you play the long game, it will be worth it.
You can write a book, design (or hire someone to design) merchandise, create a product, or put together an online course. For example, DrawWithJazza on YouTube created an online course and sells it on Skillshare. Makenna Misuraco on Instagram shares her short poems and is going to start selling a book in the summer. If you’re a fashion influencer on Instagram, you can sell an online course on your best fashion tips, or put together an eBook for $14.99.
If you have a passion for jewelry making, or if you draw on the side, sell that. You can make a product of your own based on what you already enjoy. You can sell on Etsy, Society6, Redbubble, and more.
Finally, you can offer your services. For example, you might have unknowingly become an expert photographer while on Instagram, and you may be able to provide that as a service to your local followers. They get to meet you, and you make money—it’s a win-win. Since you’re an influencer, you know the steps to becoming one, so you can offer to be a coach for others who are looking to become an influencer.
Write down all your ideas, let them simmer for a day, and then pick one, and get started tomorrow!
Those are three ways you can make money on Instagram. Start searching brands you can connect and work with, or write down ideas for a product. Alternatively, if you’re willing to put in the extra work, and you have time, use all three methods to start making an extra couple thousand of dollars a month. There’s no point in waiting, so start working today!