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How To Make Money On Instagram

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Instagram is a disruptive ecommerce force, unlike some other social media networks. While it was first intended for photo sharing, it’s now a business platform, which can be used by anyone, including dropshipping ecommerce business owners.

You may be thinking to yourself: how do people make money on Instagram? How does selling on Instagram differ from other types of ecommerce business?

How to make money using instagram

Can You Make Money on Instagram?

Yes, you can definitely make money on Instagram.

The enthusiasts of this social media platform are always looking out for new ways on how to earn money from Instagram.   

Now you might be thinking: right, I get that it’s possible, but how exactly can I be making money on Instagram?

Don’t worry, we’ll unravel the mysteries of how people make money on Instagram in detail, but let’s first take a look at a few ways that it can be done.

You could be focusing on sponsored posts for brands that want to reach to your audience, making you the perfect medium to do that. Or, you could become an affiliate, and earn money by selling products that belong to other brands. These two main ways aside, you could also be selling your own products, which could be physical or digital products, or even a service. Basically, you can sell services and products, just like in any ecommerce business environment.

As long as the business can be expressed visually and creatively for marketing purposes, you can tap into Instagram’s millions of users. 

Instagram Success Stories

You can learn from others’ experiences in how to earn from Instagram from case studies and success stories like those below.


BeardBrand


BeardBrand was first featured in a New York Times article. Their store was started with only $30 and a committed vendor.  How they earn money from Instagram is unique and inspiring.

They sell products that bearded men would need to maintain their lifestyle. BeardBrand.com has a strong Instagram presence with more than 124,000 followers.


SoAestheticShop


Justin Wong, the founder of SoAestheticShop, is passionate about cute Harajuku-style fashion. His massive Instagram account is his main marketing channel. Note that each Instagram post is meticulously edited to create a very attractive image. Wong makes $12K per month on Instagram selling various products with the dropshipping business model. 

SoAestheticShop.com doesn’t carry products because it uses the dropshipping business model. While there are several vendors, the products aren’t purchased by the store owner until they are purchased by customers. Dropshipping is considered one of the most lucrative business models today, and it can be easily integrated with Instagram marketing and ecommerce.


how to make money with instagram now


Make Sponsored Posts

Probably the best-known way of making money on Instagram is as an influencer, where you make sponsored posts on behalf of a brand. You will need a sizeable following for brands to consider you viable, so spend your time building up your following and engagement before you attempt to connect with brands.

It is important that you keep your content authentic. Your followers will rapidly lose interest in you if you come across as simply making posts for marketing purposes. If you do manage to gain brands interested in you, there is little point in working with any where you can’t feel enthusiastic about the product. If you can’t authentically post about a product, there is little point in taking on the contract, no matter how much money they offer you.


Do Affiliate Marketing

If you are an affiliate you sign up with a company and try and sell their product. You get to keep a certain percentage of each sale you make.

As an affiliate, you will be given a trackable link for the products you sell. This means that if somebody follows your link and buys the good, the selling company knows that the customer came via you, and knows to pay you the commission.

One problem with Instagram is that you can’t place clickable links in your posts. The only place you can put one is in your bio. This means that you can realistically only promote one affiliate product at a time.

For affiliate marketing to be successful on Instagram you need to search for products that will connect with your followers. Don’t be tempted to try and sell products from outside your niche. All that is likely to do is to lead to Unfollows.A good guideline to follow is to only sell products that you would buy yourself.


Promote Your Online Store or Other Business

If you operate a business you can use Instagram in the same way as any other brand. This is particularly valuable when you sell products that you can showcase with your photography. Instagram is ideal for promoting fashion, beauty and food products.

You can create posts giving special offers. Just remember the 80-20 rule, though. For every promotional post, you need four posts that don’t promote your product.

You can still showcase your store or business in more general posts though, by emphasizing its more human side. For instance, you could share images of your customers using the product. Alternatively, you might show your followers what truly happens behind the scenes. They are likely to respond well to these posts showing your more human side.You need your Instagram posts to show that you are trustworthy.


Sell Your Photos

If you take high-quality photos then there is a chance that people may be willing to pay for your best images. Think how many people willingly purchase stock images online.

To a large extent, this does depend on your photography skills. The more you work on these, along with editing and composition, the greater the chance that you will be able to make some money from your images.

You are far more likely to sell an authentic photo than a staged one. Think of all those cheesy stock photos that you see, parfocality on the free sites. You want your images to look real, not played-up for the camera.


There are a number of marketplaces where you can sell your photos.

  • Foap - this is effectively a way for brands to crowdsource quality photos. You can earn $5 for each photo you sell on Foap. There are also Missions where brands ask for particular types of images and photographers compete to provide the best image. In these cases, brands often pay substantially higher rates.
  • 500px - here you can join a large community of photographers and licence your photos for potential sale.
  • Twenty20 - you can place photos on this marketplace and make $2 per photo that somebody buys. Again you can enter photo challenges, and receive commissioning work from brands.

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