Almost anyone who has an account on social media has wondered before whether or not they could make money by simply existing on social media. It seems like a fun, and easy, gig. Most of us follow a good handful of social media influencers/content creators/gurus/bloggers, whatever you’d like to call them. Normal individuals who have somehow amassed hundreds of thousands of followers on any given social media platform. They’ve managed to get all of their followers invested in their lives, like mini celebrities. If you’ve wondered what it takes to get to that point, where a selfie on Instagram can give you thousands of dollars, here’s how.
Pick a platform
Many of the social media stars that you love following have significant followings across multiple social media platforms. But most of them started out on just one platform, and branched out as their following grew. If you’re hoping to someday monetize your social media accounts, you should pick one to start with. Not that it’s impossible to become successful across multiple at once, but it can easily become overwhelming.
Youtube – Youtube is easily one of the most lucrative websites to get started on, but it’s not easy. Of all of the social media sites, it takes the longest amount of time and highest level of commitment to create content.
Instagram – One of the most popular sites to start monetizing your profile, is Instagram. With just ten thousand followers, you can easily start to bring in money and find opportunities.
Twitter – Twitter is a bit harder to monetize. Twitter followers are valuable, but a tweet is worth significantly less than an instagram post or youtube video. Usually you can offer a tweet onto your package as an add on service to make just a little bit longer.
Tik Tok – New to the scene, is Tik Tok. A fast growing video sharing website, Tik Tok is a great place to start.
Realize that it takes a lot of time and work
Too many people assume that being an influencer is easy work. You just capture your life and share it online, and then make money, right? But behind every instagram photo you see is hours of prep. Outfit selection, location scouting, paying a photographer, curating instagram style, purchasing props, editing the photos, and more. It’s a lot of work. This isn’t meant to be discouraging, but a reality check. Too many people think it’s an easy job, when in reality, it’s still a job. It takes time, often years, to make money on social media.
Create, create, create
What is more important than the amount of followers/subscribers you have? The content you create. Yes, with 300 followers you won’t be making money, but instead of focusing on growing your audience, you should focus on creating better content. Followers come much easier when you have interesting and quality content that is drawing people in. So don’t stress about the numbers, focus on creating beautiful and interesting content first.
As your social media accounts grow, you should take every opportunity you can to network with both brands, and other creators. A great first step is to join facebook groups for bloggers/influencers/creators/freelancers. This will not only provide you with great tips to grow your personal brand, but you’ll be introduced to tons of other creators.
Put yourself out there
Chances are, you won’t make a dime on social media until you put yourself out there. Make a list of companies/brands you want to work with. Once you feel confident in the quality of content you produce and your personal brand, reach out to these companies. Tell them what you can offer them, and propose a collaboration to work together. Don’t expect to get paid at first, so use these opportunities to help you figure out what you’re doing and how to be better at what you do. Another great way to put your name in front of companies you want to work with is to join blogging and PR networks. A few great ones to get you started are Aspire IQ, Massive Sway, Social Fabric, and Social Native.