As an aspiring influencer/content creator, when you start really growing your audience and becoming more professional, you’ll probably wonder how you can take your influencer career to the next level by monetizing it.
That’s why we created this guide on how to make money as an influencer. If you’re a content creator looking to start making money from your content, this is the guide you need.
3 Tips To Help You Become More Popular as a Content Creator
Before you can make money as an influencer, you have to become an influencer! If you’re a content creator looking to make some money, here are a few pro tips to move you along that path.
1. Create High-Quality Content
If you want to make a lasting impression on potential followers and potential brands that you may be able to collaborate with, your content is going to need to stand out. You need to make high-quality quality and post it on a regular basis.
Keep in mind that it’s better to post high-quality content a few times per week rather than posting mediocre content on a daily basis.
The content itself needs to be great, and it’s wise to invest in some good gear to up the production value of your content. You don’t need to spend thousands of dollars, but consider getting a decent camera, microphones and lighting.
2. Engage With Your Audience
Engagement rates are super important when you’re looking to make some cash from your content. The thing is, engagement works both ways. Of course, you may have tons of people liking and commenting on your posts, but are you engaging with them at all?
Influencing is a two way street. The people engaging with your content will be thrilled if you reply to them. It’ll only make you more popular which then makes you more appealing to the brands you want to collaborate with.
Replying to comments is a great way to engage with your audience, but you can also add questions to your posts. If you’re using a certain product, making a certain dish, etc. be sure to add some questions like “what do you guys think of this?” or “have any of you tried this product? What do you think of it?” Then, like and reply to the comments!
3. Use an Influencer Network
When you start gaining a lot of traction as an influencer, brands will probably reach out to you with offers to collaborate. Before you reach that point of popularity, it’s a great idea to join an influencer network.
Influencer networks (like us!) help content creators find brands to collaborate with. Influencer networks make getting brand collaborations super easy, and a really solid network like Insense will still be relevant to you even when you’re a famous influencer.
If you’re not a major influencer yet, definitely don’t be discouraged from using an influencer network. A solid influencer network like Insense can help micro and nano-influencers find brand collabs too.
The 3 Best Ways To Make Money as an Influencer
Now, let’s get down to the best ways that influencers can make money. Here they are in no particular order...
1. Use Affiliate Marketing
The most simple way to make money as an influencer is to start using affiliate marketing.
Affiliate marketing works like this… you join an affiliate program which gives you unique links to products, you use those links in your content, descriptions, etc. and then when someone uses that link to buy a product, you get commission (usually somewhere between 5% and 30%).
Affiliate marketing is very popular and there are tons of reputable sites for it, including Amazon. A quick Google search will help you find the best affiliate marketing sites.
2. Create Your Own Products
If you’re an entrepreneurial type, you can really use that to aid you on your journey to make money as an influencer.
Creating and selling your own products is a great way to bring in some income as an influencer. Products like ebooks, online courses and subscriptions/paywall services (think Patreon) are great product options for content creators.
Obviously, the success of your products is very tied to your popularity, and when you’re very popular, new product opportunities will arise. For example, you may end up getting the opportunity to co-create a product with a brand, or you could offer coaching services to help up and coming influencers get a content plan together. When you have a big following, the product opportunities really open up.
One more thing, earlier we mentioned that creating high-quality content is a must, and the same goes for products. If you’re going to create a product, make sure it’s high-quality. Afterall, your name and reputation are on the line.
3. Get Brand Collaborations
Okay, this is a big money maker for influencers. In this article, we’ve mentioned brand collaborations several times. Let’s dive into what exactly that is. Simply put, a brand collaboration is when a brand and a content creator partner up by having the content creator advertise a product for the brand. In return, the content creator will get paid with money or products.
Brand collabs are a huge way to make money as an influencer. You know when you see an influencer sporting a specific product in their posts? That’s almost certainly a brand collaboration in action. Whether it’s clothing, makeup, workout equipment, etc., they’re most likely publicly displaying that product because they’re getting paid. It’s a sponsored post!
Through brand collaborations, you may even get to become a brand ambassador which is an ongoing brand collaboration.
Not to sound like a broken record, but if you’re interested in getting brand collaborations, you should highly consider using our platform, Insense.
8 Tips for Finding and Getting Brand Collaborations
Now that you know how you can make money as an influencer, we want to share some tips for finding and managing brand collaboration opportunities.
1. Reach Out
If you’re an up and coming influencer, you’re probably going to need to reach out to brands before they reach out to you. While platforms like Insense make finding brand collaborations super easy by letting you apply for collabs and chat with brands in our app, you can also reach out to brands in other ways.
If there’s a brand you really want to work with, reach out to them! You can reach out via social media or look for the contact form on their site. It’s also worth connecting with the brand’s employees on LinkedIn and reaching out that way.
Remember to be realistic, though. If you’re a micro-influencer, you may not hear back from huge brands. Be realistic, start small and work your way up.
2. Provide Statistics
When you reach out, it’s best to provide details on who you are and share some in-depth stats like follower count, engagement rates and audience demographics.
Remember that you’re a unique individual and you should let the brand know what your unique offering to them is. What makes you different from other influencers? Let the brand know.
3. Listen and Ask Questions
When you reach out to a brand, it may be tempting to send a long message all about you, but that’s not what’s best. Ask the brand questions too. It’s a good idea to start your message saying that you’re looking for brand collaboration opportunities and you’re wondering if they’re currently looking for any influencers to collaborate with.
No matter what they’re reply is, be sure to read all of the details and ask questions about anything you’re unsure about. Before any paperwork is signed, the details of a brand collaboration should be crystal clear for everyone involved.
4. Choose Relevant Brands That You Genuinely Like
It can be tempting to work with any brand that you can find, but it’s better to work with brands that you genuinely like and are relevant to your audience.
A food blogger making sponsored posts about a makeup brand isn’t exactly relevant to their audience.
If you work with brands that aren’t relevant to your audience, it makes you lose credibility.. We know that you’d just be trying to pay the bills and there’s nothing wrong with that, but it could look like a “sell out” move to your audience.
Remember, you’re a unique content creator and your authenticity is what will get you very far.
5. Be Transparent With Your Audience
When you get brand collaborations, you should be transparent with your audience. There are different disclosure rules on different social media platforms that state that you need to disclose when a post is sponsored and when you’re advertising for a brand.
It’s good to follow the rules, and it’s good to be very open and honest with your followers about what you’re posting.
6. Plan Realistically
If you’re trying to get brand collaborations ASAP, it’s probably not going to happen. Keep in mind, you’re dealing with professional companies with a lot of moving parts. They schedule things months in advance.
When you reach out, make sure to ask when they’re looking to work with some new content creators and mention your availability. For example, if it’s springtime, you can say that you’re looking for collaboration opportunities for the fall and winter months.
7. Keep an Address Book
When you’re searching the internet for brands to work with and their contact information, it’s gonna pay off to stay organized.
Keep some kind of address book, notes or spreadsheet with the brands you’ve contacted. Company name, contact name, email, notes etc. You get the idea. There’s no right or wrong way to do it, but just make sure to keep track of who you’ve contacted, what their reply was and who you still need to contact.
8. Follow Up and Keep Looking
Brands get reached out to a lot, so if you don’t hear back, don’t get discouraged. Just wait a week and reach out again. It’s the art of following up. Keep reaching out periodically until you hear back. You don’t want to be annoying or seem frustrated, though. Remember, you’re a valuable content creator reaching out to them. Remind them of your value.
Additionally, don’t get hyper focused on one or two particular brands and use all of your energy trying to speak with them. Keep searching for relevant brands to work with. We’ve probably said it five times by now, but keep in mind that platforms like ours help content creators find brands to work with. Our platform pretty much does the legwork for you.
Ready To Get Started?
Now that we’ve covered the best ways that content creators can make money and have given you some pro tips on reaching out to brands, it’s time for you to get started!
We definitely recommend signing up for some affiliate programs, joining Insense so you can find brand collabs and when you’re ready, creating some products that you can sell.
Our main goal is to help content creators excel in their career, so feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions!