You don’t need hundreds of thousands of followers to make money on Instagram.
According to buffer, influencers with 10,000 followers or less are getting the best results for businesses.
So, if you’ve ever thought, maybe I can do that too.
You probably can.
Instagram strategy is my thing.
I’ve helped over a hundred small businesses grow and monetize their Instagram account.
Let’s get started.
I’ll be answering five of the most commonly asked questions.
How many followers do you need in order to make money on Instagram?
How much do influencers actually make?
What are the best ways that you can start making money on Instagram?
How do you know what to charge as an influencer?
And how do you start making partnerships with brands?
How many followers do you need in order to start making money on Instagram?
Well, it’s not as many as you would think.
Here are some ballpark figures.
According to a recent study, micro-influencers or accounts with 10,000 or fewer followers will make around $88 per post, mid-tier influencers, or accounts.
With 10,000 to a hundred thousand followers will charge around $200 per post, top-level influencers or influencers with a hundred thousand to a million followers can charge around $670 per post.
However, they can charge a lot more.
When you get to this level, the numbers tend to vary.
The reason that these numbers are not set in stone is that there are a few factors that come into play.
The niche that you’re in will define it, how much competition you’ll be up against and how much money you could potentially make.
Some very profitable, but also very competitive niches are fitness, beauty, health, business, and travel.
If you’re not trying to compete, you can always dominate a very, very niche corner of Instagram.
So, for example, Nicole McLaughlin remixes clothing and turns them into art pieces and she has close to half a million followers.
How much money you charge will depend on how engaged your followers are.
The reason for this is that brands want to see a return on investment.
So, if you have a hundred thousand fake followers, you won’t be able to provide any real value for brands.
Keep in mind that it’s not only the size and reach of your Instagram account that brands want.
It’s also your audience’s trust and engagement with your content as well.
This is because you provide access to a niche audience filled with potential customers.
And this is something that brands need and are willing to pay for.
Now, let’s take a look at how, how much money you can actually make.
Like in any industry and any job, there’s a range of what you can actually make.
In my experience, there are no hard fast rules, but you’re probably looking for a hard number.
So I can at least say this marketer are willing to pay 1 cent per follower.
So let’s say you have 5,000 followers, you could potentially charge $50 per post.
Again, this is just a guideline.
Influencer Matt Crump shared his pricing guide with later.com.
What he said is that pricing will depend on creative mandate, timeline, production costs, and usage rates.
Now, if you’re wondering what top Instagrammers make, it is a lot.
They can make thousands and thousands of dollars on the content that they make.
But let this keep you motivated as you grow your account and let it be something to reach for.
Let’s brainstorm a few ways that you can make money on Instagram.
You can work with brands on sponsored posts.
You can become an affiliate.
You can open your own online store, or you can do all of these things at once.
So let’s start with the most common approach.
You could charge brands, a fee for sponsored content on your feed or your stories.
Together, you’ll come to an agreement about exclusivity.
How much content you produce the wording that you’re using, the actual content itself and how much money is at play.
The contract may also include having a specific call to action, like having a link in your bio that leads to the brand’s website.
Another route is becoming an affiliate.
Affiliates are different from influencers because affiliates are invested in making their brand partners sales, rather than just raising brand awareness.
This is typically done with a promo code or a trackable link to indicate that the sales are coming from you.
To get connected with brands that are looking for affiliates, you can explore affiliate marketplaces, like ClickBank, Reward Style, and Amazon associates.
The ultimate type of post for affiliate marketing is reviewing products.
To make this work only review products that you actually back and that your audience would be interested in hearing about.
So for example, Peter McKinnon would never review kitchenware, but he would definitely review cameras.
Though it sounds like a numbers game.
Affiliate marketing is an art.
It takes tack to be able to balance sponsored content and organic content without looking like a walking advertisement.
Remember that your audience is your biggest asset, and if you post too much promotional material, you could potentially lose their trust.
If you lose your audience, you lose the backbone of your entire business.
You don’t only have to work for other brands in order to make money on Instagram, you can have complete control over your income by opening your own online business, you can sell physical goods, services and digital products.
Let’s take a look at Loki, the Wolf dog.
For example, he is one of the biggest dog entrepreneurs out there on Instagram, and he even has his own online store.
He sells mugs, greeting cards, and apparel.
There are a few ways that you can start your own online business.
You can use a print-on-demand service in order to print on your own mugs, t-shirts, and totes.
We actually have a whole video dedicated to just how to start your own online t-shirt brand.
And you can check that out here.
You can also sell services like consulting, music, production, yoga classes, and photography to name a few.
Alternatively, you can sell digital products, which are personally some of my favorites because these are infinitely scalable, and you can make money while you sleep.
Consider selling courses, gated content, and workout plans.
Whatever you’re selling, you’re going to want to have a link to it in your bio.
I recommend using link tree so that you can link out to more than one URL at a time.
Also, enable Instagram shopping so that customers can browse your products directly.
Don’t limit yourself.
Financially free people have a secret, multiple streams of income.
As long as you have no direct conflicts of interest, you could and should use all of these approaches to diversify your revenue streams.
Start by looking for brands that have similar beliefs and values to yours and your audiences.
You can reach out to them directly in order to try to work out a deal, or you can list yourself on influencer marketplaces in order to get discovered and start building relationships.
On Four, you can create an influencer card with a list of all your social profiles for brands to check out when they’re shopping around for partnerships, or you can access a list of brands and their wants in order to take initiative and start reaching out.
Crowdtap is great for smaller accounts.
You can do small content creation tasks to earn rewards.
However, this is only available to people that are in the US.
IndaHash is where brands post campaigns for you to participate in.
Post a picture and use the specified hashtags and get paid.
However, you’re going to need at least 700 engaged followers in order to be eligible.
The rules vary when it comes to sponsored content but in order to respect your audience’s trust use hashtag add or hashtag sponsored on your posts.
Check out what other Instagrammers are doing by searching hashtag sponsored and get inspired.
Instagram also has a paid partnership tag that calls out sponsored posts.
Some brands might require you to do this in order to disclose your relationship with them.
When you’re working with a brand, there are two main ways to price your posts.
First sponsored posts.
You can charge a flat fee per post.
The best thing that you can do for yourself is value your work based off of the return on investment that you provide for brands.
Assuming there’s transparency, you’re going to want to be as involved in the results as possible.
So let’s say you’re charging $50 per post, and you realize that the brand makes 10 K in sales.
You’re going to want to renegotiate your rates.
For affiliate posts, you will charge a cost per sale.
This usually comes in the form of a percentage of the sale and commission can be anywhere from 5 to 30%, but the customer doesn’t need to buy a product in order for you to get a kickback.
Depending on the goal of the campaign, you can arrange for a pay-per-lead pricing model.
This is where you get paid a flat fee every time a lead completes the desired action.
So they can sign up for a newsletter, fill out a contact form, or sign up for a free trial.
Lastly, you can charge a Pay per click rate where you receive payment for every customer that you convert to a brand’s website.
Do not undervalue yourself, just because you have a small following.
Micro-influencers there’s are on the rise because of their authenticity and their return on investment.
A mobile marketer study showed that influencers with 1 to 5,000 followers have more than two times the engagement in comparison to influencers with 10,000 followers.
So keep in mind that small can be mighty.
There are no hard fast rules, some influencers overcharged, while some undercharge.
The key is to be both fair and competitive while knowing your value.
Those were five actionable tips on how you can start making money on Instagram.
And you’ve also learned how much influencers actually make.
We also discussed some creative ways and ideas that you can start making money on Instagram.
We talked about how to charge for your content and how to make relationships with brands.