Have you been using Instagram as a hobby? A mere tool for sharing photos, videos, and stories you feel passionate about?

It’s time to think again!

Say, for example, you find that people value your content. This spurred you into creating more. However, this takes a lot of time and effort. Why not make money off it?

Why not learn how to become an influencer?

Instagram has grown into a powerful app that offers a plethora of opportunities. This is true for both brands and users.

If you’ve been thinking about becoming a social media influencer, we’ve prepared this guide for you.

The Growing Need For Instagram Influencers

Influencer marketing is a strategy where brands collaborate with influencers. With this strategy, social media influencers introduce brands on a casual platform.

This marketing strategy has grown leaps and bound. In fact, more and more brands consider this strategy as a critical part of digital content marketing.

According to studies, influencer marketing industry will reach more than $8 billion in 2020. But where would these influencers thrive? Instagram of course!

Instagram is the best place for brands to reach new audiences quickly. It helps boost brand awareness, grow their account, and drive sales. More importantly, it also offers the best channel for engagement. In fact, Instagram has a much higher engagement rate as compared to Twitter.

Additional studies from Influence Central proved how crucial Instagram influencer marketing is. They discovered that influencers are highly effective in influencing purchase decisions.

Influencers Are Considered As A Trusted Source

When users see an influencer using a product or service, they consider it as a recommendation from a trusted friend. This is highly advantageous for businesses.

That’s why businesses are allocating funds for influencing marketing. They intend to increase their budget over the next year.

It will be interesting to see how this strategy evolves. This growing demand is one more reason why you should consider how to become an influencer.

But where do you start?

How To Become An Influencer #1: Switch To A Business Account

The first step is to convert your personal account into a business profile. This account type provides exclusive and advanced features including:

  • Instagram analytics through Insights
  • Shopping tags
  • Links to Stories
  • Instagram ads and promotion
  • Contact information

One of its most useful tools is Insights. When learning how to become an influencer, you need to focus more on your analytics.

Why is analytics important?

For one, you’ll see your follower demographics. Secondly, you’ll determine when your followers are most active. Most importantly, it also shows which of your posts are popular.

This information is crucial as you need to know who you’re influencing. You wouldn’t want to post random stuff. With reliable analytics, you can come up with a good strategy.

Additionally, this info is also helpful when reaching out to brands. Remember, numbers speak louder than your content.

It’s also worth mentioning that, with a business account, you can promote content and run ads. This helps your account grow and reach new audiences. Plus, it also boosts your engagement.

How To Become An Influencer #2: Write A Creative Bio

The first thing that brands and potential followers see is your Instagram bio. It’s located just below your IG handle. That’s why it should be compelling enough to hold people’s attention.

If you’re learning how to become an influencer on Instagram, you should know the value of a great bio.

For one, it should be short and concise. Remember, an Instagram bio has a 150-character limit. Make it count!

  1. How would you pitch your account? Asking this question will help you add the necessary details.
  2. Use appropriate keywords. Are you a travel blogger? A make-up guru? A fashionista? Use trending keywords and hashtags that best describe your personal brand.

Take girleatworld As An Example

Mel is a food and travel blogger and she made it quite known on her bio.

What she did right?

  • Introduced what users should expect from her account
  • Added a branded hashtag. This makes it easier for users to follow her content.
  • Provided contact information. In doing so, brands and followers know where to reach her.

Tip: If you have a blog or website, put it in your bio.

Remember, aside from Stories or shoppable posts, the bio is the only place where you can add a link.

For example, you can add your Youtube channel link. This is especially useful if you’re a video content creator.

Another example is adding your personal website. As your account grows, your website visits will also increase.

How To Become An Influencer # 3: Choose A Niche

What are you passionate about? Do you like posting make-up tutorials? Are you a skincare guru? Or maybe you enjoy traveling or food blogging?

Choose a niche that showcases your strengths. In doing so you’ll establish your brand identity as a social media influencer.

Additionally, it should be something you’re knowledgeable about. This will help you create valuable content that garners trust and loyalty among followers.

Of course, it doesn’t have to be only one niche. In fact, you can feature different things in your account. What’s important is that they are not random.

Take this example from Myriam. She focuses on posting content about food, travel, and life. Her Instagram feed still looks cohesive and beautifully curated.

How To Become An Influencer #4: Use Trends To Your Advantage

To be a successful social media influencer, you’ll have to keep your eyes and ears open for the latest trends. Especially in relation to your niche.

Posting content that is related to the current trend will help boost engagement. It’s because of the massive surge of searches.

Take this example from lankybox. This account is managed by Justin & Adam, known as zero-budget guys.

What they usually do is create a parody video of the latest music videos. They leverage the music video’s popularity to boost their engagement.

Tip: It’s best to leverage trends that are within your industry. Or when creating a fad content, keep your Instagram feed and niche in mind.

How To Become An Influencer #5: Set A Regular Posting Schedule

Users follow your account for your content. It goes without saying that posting regularly is a must. Most Instagram influencers post at least once a day. However, the number of times they post in a day may vary.

When you post at regular intervals, it boosts your engagement rate. With that said, you shouldn’t post randomly.

Finding your optimal posting time is essential in learning how to become an influencer on Instagram

Here’s how:

  1. Go to your Instagram Insights.
  2. Tap the Audience tab
  3. Scroll down to find the Followers section.

Of course, your optimal time won’t always fall on days when you’re free. So, it’s best to schedule your content.

Tip: Use a reliable Instagram scheduling app. In doing so, you’ll save time and effort.

Third-party scheduling apps allow you to create content in advance. Once that’s done, all you have to do is set the date and time for posting. This is done automatically. No need to fret about missing posting schedules anymore!

Take Advantage of Stories!

You can’t spam followers with Instagram content. That’s why you should utilize Instagram Stories.

With more than 200 million users using this feature, it’s one of the best strategies to gain visibility.

  • For one, it’ll help you reach new audiences.
  • Secondly, if you have more than 10K followers, you can use exclusive features. This includes the “Swipe Up” feature.
  • Thirdly, you can consider tagging other accounts or giving shout outs.

Use Stories to make yourself more approachable and relatable. Show who you truly are. Be genuine.

Additionally, this feature allows you to provide your audience with entertainment as well. In doing so, you’ll be build trust and credibility.

How To Become An Influencer #6: Engage With Your Followers

This is the most important prerequisite to becoming a social media influencer. Be available to your followers. This means relating to them.

Learning how to become an influencer on Instagram means more than posting beautiful photos. You should also engage with users. How?

For one, you can reply to comments or messages. Another option is to ask for suggestions or host giveaways!

Tip: You can use the poll or question stickers in Stories! This will make it more fun for your followers.

You now have an idea on how to become an influencer on Instagram. The next step is learning how to monetize your account!

How To Make Money As A Social Media Influencer

Influencer marketing is in vogue. In fact, it is expected to grow to a $6.5 billion industry in 2019. More than double the 2017 figures.

With that said, there’s plenty of opportunities for social media influencers. Especially if you know where to look.

If youโ€™re thinking of monetizing your Instagram account, this section will be a huge help. We’ve listed different ways to make money through influencing.

Post Instagram Sponsored Content

More and more brands are now working with influencers to boost brand awareness. That’s why sponsored content has become the norm. This is one of the most common ways to earn money.

But what is a sponsored content?

When a brand collaborates with an influencer, the latter will then create content that features the brand’s products or services. The content may be:

  • A high-quality image that promotes the new product
  • Product or service review
  • A how-to video featuring the product.

Another option is to host a contest. Once you and the brand decided the content they want, you can suggest doing a giveaway.

This is a win-win situation. You’ll see a boost in engagement as well as increased brand awareness.

Become A Brand Ambassador

Another common way to earn money as a social media influencer is becoming a brand ambassador.

This entails a long-term relationship with a brand. Basically, brands partner with an influencer who aligns well with their identity and target market.

Who usually becomes brand ambassadors? Brands usually hire big-time influencers. However, as of late, brands are exploring partnerships with local, micro-influencers.

Instagram Affiliate Marketing

This strategy allows you to earn money if a sale is made through your post or content. Think of it like a pay-per-sale or pay-per-click model.

It’s best to join affiliate networks. Say, for example, your content is usually about skincare. If a skincare brand is looking to partner with an influencer, the network will match you two together.

Additionally, all communications and payment can be handled through this platform.

Sponsored Blog Posts and Videos

It’s also a good idea to widen your reach. Build an online presence on other platforms as well, like websites, blogs, and Youtube.

You can leverage your Instagram account to monetize your website. Say, for example, a brand reached out to you to create a video review of a product.

A Youtube video or blog post will help you provide a detailed review. To boost views and engagement, put a teaser in our Instagram feed.

Note: Your blog or Youtube channel must have the right mix of organic and sponsored content.

Are You Ready To Start Reaching Out To Your Preferred Brands?

It’s no use approaching brands when you’ve nothing to show. That’s why you need to properly examine your account. Here are a few things to consider:

  • Have you reached at least 1,000 followers? Of course, you will still need to grow your account. A more realistic number for most industries would be around 5,000 followers.
  • Do you have a high engagement rate? Are your followers actively liking, commenting, and sharing your content?
  • Have you been posting regularly for at least six months?

However, there’s no need to stress over follower count. In fact, brands are now collaborating with influencers that match their target audience.

Additionally, more and more brands are working with nano-influencers. These influencers have fewer followers but have high engagement rates.

If you focus on building an active and engaged community, brands will start to notice. As a result, they’ll be interested in your content.

In Conclusion

Learning how to become an influencer takes time and effort. There is no magic pill. You need to be patient and follow the tips we’ve listed above.

Most importantly, you should know who you want to influence. Know your market and stay as authentic as possible. In doing so, you’ll build credibility and trust which is far more important than monetary incentive!

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