You’ve probably heard of people with massive Instagram followings making ridiculous sums of money with seemingly little work. If you’ve put in the work to build an engaged following, you can cash in too. But even if building a following isn’t on the books, there are still ways for you to pay a little and make money on Instagram fast.
With large or small followings, here’s how to make money on Instagram fast. If you don’t have a large following, you can click here to skip to the next section.
Make money with a following
If you’ve already put in the hard work of building your audience on Instagram, your mission now is to get clicks on your bio link. Since Instagram doesn’t allow you to put links in the posts, you need to create additional incentive for people to actually navigate to your bio and click that link.
Here are 5 guidelines for crafting enticing and effective offers:
- Do a giveaway contest and tailor offers to your audience. If you’re targeting writers, don’t give away an iPad. Sure, everyone wants an iPad, but what do WRITERS want? Find an amazing pen or an autograph from a famous writer. Stand out from the noise and make it laser-targeted.
- Scarcity. Every call to action needs scarcity. A great way to create this on Instagram is counting down with updated posts. Post the call to action with the deadline – “today only”. Update the deadline as it approaches, “12 hours” “6 hours” 30 minutes” “5 minutes”. With each update, delete the previous post to avoid distraction.
- Have a clear call to action in your bio. When you’re running a campaign, make it campaign-specific. When you’re not, make it just as clear what you want them to do.
- Use a tracking link shortener like RetargetLinks to remarket to people who click and to know when it’s working.
- Trust, social proof, reciprocity. It all comes down to the value you provide to your followers. Think about what they like to buy and what problems they have that you can solve. You can take this a step further
Provide value first, ask for the sale last
Making great posts with no apparent sales motive proves your value and increases the trust your followers have in you. Remember that people go on Instagram to be entertained, informed and/or simply look at something enjoyable, not to buy something. They’ll go to Amazon for that.
So, show that you have their best interest in mind and provide valuable content. You number of followers will steadily grow and people are more likely to buy from someone who they trust.
When you get down to creating a sales post, have a clear call to action and benefit. Tell them what to do: “Click the bio link and download/purchase/join _____ and you will get ______”.
To amplify your social proof, connect with star followers via direct message and incentives them to invest a like and a comment. In return, give them a coupon, do a shout out, or otherwise give them tons of unique value in exchange.
Make money without a following
You’re not going to make a sale without an audience, so if you don’t have your own, you’ve got to rent one if you’re going to make money on Instagram fast.
Leverage other audiences
Look for people with large, engaged audiences. The more engaged they are, the smaller it can be and still be effective for you to make money on Instagram fast.
Leveraging other people’s audiences isn’t free, but for smaller, niche audiences, you can usually trade services or keep costs lower.
There are a couple ways to leverage other audiences:
Paid shout outs / Guest posting:
Get someone relevant to post something you create that promotes your call to action. Create content that fits in with their posts, but that emphasizes your message. This technique is priced per post. For example, an account with 2 million followers would charge around $300 per post on average. To use your budget effectively, make sure that the audiences for these accounts are in your niche
These influencers can have large or small audiences as they are usually engaged. To get the most out of a brand ambassador, tag them in your posts and rent out their bio link. With a call to action and your link in their bio, the large amount of traffic that’s clicking will go to your page. Also, make an arrangement for the ambassador to shout you out in their posts
Find the best audiences to borrow:
When you click on any hashtag, the top 9 posts of all time are pinned at the top. These accounts are getting the most exposure and they’ve got Instagram figured out.
Take a look at the most relevant hashtags to your customers and find top accounts. You can use a tool called socialrank.com and sort users by the number of followers they have.
Remember, engagement wins over size.
If you don’t want to leverage someone else’s’ audience, you can buy the attention of the exact audience you want. This is the most straight-forward way to make money on Instagram fast.
While Facebook is the most powerful social advertising platform, Instagram connects to user’s Facebook profiles for audience details. And you don’t even need to be on Instagram to advertise on it. You can create an Instagram ad right from your Facebook Ads Manager.
The only limitation to creating Instagram ads is that they must be image-based. Since Instagram is a platform designed specifically around images, industries like health & fitness, food, fashion and visual products do especially well on Instagram.
Also, while Facebook is used by many different types of people, Instagram users are less diverse. Instagram ads work best for the industries and age groups that use it most: People under 30.
Instagram is full of tremendous opportunities to build and leverage an audience.
Whether you currently have a following or not, you can easily find and leverage (or buy!) audiences that want what you have.
Use these tips and you’ll make money on Instagram fast!
For more information, check out the following guides: