How do people ACTUALLY make money on Instagram?

Leading social media and advertising platforms online change rather quickly. From email to Adwords to Twitter and Facebook, the hottest platform for the average user right now is Instagram.

At the time of writing this article you definitely heard the term “Instagram Influencer”. In certain circles, this is something people aspire to become! Some of these people make crazy amount of money – some have tens or hundreds of thousands of followers and don’t make anything. What’s the difference?

Knowledge about the methods of monetizing the platform.

Before we go into these, just take a quick look at all the Instagram statistics to give you a better idea about the scale of the platform.

One billion people use Instagram every month. More than 500 million of them use it every single day.
Not bad, huh?

It’s a fairly young platform too – 71% of Instagram users worldwide are under the age of 35. Users on IG “like” on average 4.2 billion posts a day and the amount of new posts being added daily is just under 100 million.

With these kind of numbers and attention it’s no wonder that there is plenty of opportunity for smart and efficient people with entrepreneurial drive.

So what are the main ways you can monetize Instagram? Let’s get into it.

NOTE: We do not condone or in any way endorse or recommend these methods. They are listed as common ways to make money using Instagram for informational purposes only.

Method #1: Using IG for affiliate marketing

Most well-run Instagram accounts fall into a particular niche. This could be make money online, fitness, travel, photography, business etc. For each niche, there’s plenty of products available for you to promote in exchange for affiliate commissions.

Places like Clickbank have well over 15 niches for you to choose from. On an active and growing IG account, even a simple link in the bio can yield good amount of clicks and sales of the product!

We will not go into the details of affiliate marketing in this particular post, but you can find more information on our blog.

Method #2: Lead generation

This is similar to affiliate marketing monetization method in that you are making use of the clicks and traffic from your Instagram account, but instead of sending it to other people and their products in exchange for a commission, you are providing your own products or services.

This could be sending people to your email list subscribe page where you build your list in exchange for a free e-book or a free video course. Perhaps you are looking for coaching clients or mentees, perhaps you’re a personal trainer looking for people wanting to take their gym experience to the next level. A good Instagram is a great source of leads.

Method #3: Selling shoutouts

This is where most of the Instagram influencers are looking to make their money, successfully or not.
Selling shoutouts and mentions can be a great way to make extra money and even receive products and services for free in exchange for an Instagram post, a story or a mention. Most common examples include fashion brands, women and men accessories, jewellery, restaurants and so on.

Although some influencers fall into a trap of thinking this is the only way to monetize and are missing out on other opportunities, once you know how to grow your following you will become a very attractive partner for businesses looking to make good use of their marketing budget – and some of these can be really generous…

Method #4: Becoming a social media expert and a freelancer

Another GREAT way to make money from using Instagram is running accounts for your clients, usually small and medium businesses or public personas. Clients like that can pay up to $1,500 a month for you to run their Instagram account! Obviously, this takes some knowledge and practice but with just a few months of experience and a client or two under your belt as a proof of results (get your first client for $400 a month if you need to!) landing just 4 clients that pay $2,000 per month will get you into that magical 6-figure-a-year club!

There are few other ways to create income from this social media platform, but these are the main and most recommended ones. Give it a try!