With the above in mind, here are the 5 steps you need to take to start getting paid to post on Instagram:
Make Content that People In Your Niche Want to See
The first thing is pretty self-explanatory – you need to create content that resonates with people interested in your niche.
Put yourself in the shoes of your audience. As someone interested in fitness, for example, what kind of content would an Instagram page have to have for you to be interested enough to follow that page?
Some quick examples of this type of content could include:
pre/post workout shakes with the recipe included in the caption
in-the-gym action shots (squats, deadlifts, etc.)
progress posts of clients you have helped train
before-and-after progress posts
motivational quotes from famous figures in the fitness industry
Here’s an example of something a fitness personality on Instagram might post:
Make it Easy for Your Target Audience to Find You Through Hashtags
You could have the best content in the world, but if it’s not reaching anyone it doesn’t matter.
Attaching the right hashtags to your posts make sure that your content is reaching the kinds of people that you want as followers.
For example, if you are creating fitness-related posts but aren’t using any fitness-related hashtags, you’re making it virtually impossible for people in the Instagram fitness community to find your content.
And while using high-volume general hashtags like #fitness is definitely a good start, if you don’t also include smaller, more specialized hashtags more specific to your individual posts, you risk having your posts constantly be drowned out by the hundreds of thousands of other posts using #fitness.
For example, if you are posting a photo illustrating the correct way to perform a squat, in addition to using a hashtag like #fitness, you could also include a smaller hashtag like #squatforlife. This way, in addition to any general traffic you might get from #fitness, you’re also making your posts your visible to a much more specific group of the fitness community who are more likely to appreciate your post about squat form.
According to Hootsuite, the use of around 9 hashtags tends to results in the most amount of engagement. Try to include a mix of popular-but-general and less-popular-but-specific hashtags.
This is an example of how your hashtags might look on a post about the correct way to perform a squat. It consists of both general, higher volume hashtags as well as more specific, lower volume hashtags.
Using the right hashtags and creating the right kind of content is so that when you do grow your page to an appreciable size and sponsors begin looking at you, they can see that the kind of people who follow you match up with what those sponsors are looking for in their own audience.
Hashtags are one way that people can discover. Engaging with people in your community is another.
Neil Patel found that for every 100 likes, he received roughly 6 followers. Take the hashtags that you discovered through your research above and start engaging with people using those hashtags. This way, when you begin gaining followers from your engagement, you know you’re likely getting followers who fit your demographic.
If you’re strapped for time, you can use a tool like AiGrow to automate this process and begin automatically engaging with your target audience through Likes, comments, and DMs. See the quick video below to see how it works:
Get in Touch With Sponsors
If you’re doing the above steps correctly, 8/10 times sponsors will begin contacting you.
This was a brand that reached out to my fitness apparel page. My page had only been in operation for five months and had just over 1,000 followers.
In same cases, however, it can pay to reach out to sponsors yourself.
This doesn’t always have to begin with a direct DM asking if they can sponsor you. This can come across as desperate.
If after building a sizable audience relevant to your sponsor your dream sponsor still isn’t sliding into your DMs, then you need to start getting creative.
If you’re not doing it already, start commenting and/or answering people’s questions under your dream sponsor’s posts. If your dream sponsor sells products, buy their product, post about your experience, and tag the sponsor in your post.
After enough of these types of things, you can then upgrade to DMs.
Here’s a sample DM you can send to your dream sponsor:
“Hey guys! I’ve been a huge advocate of your brand for years. You were actually an inspiration for creating my fitness Instagram page in the first place. Do you offer any sort of ambassador program? Over the past x years, I’ve managed to grow my audience to 0ver x fitness-obsessed followers who I think would fit with your target audience perfectly. Let me know! Keep up the awesome work.”
You can certainly send out DMs to every potential sponsor one-by-one, but as shown in the video above, to save you the time and effort you can also use a tool like AiGrow to automatically send out hundreds of DMs a day.
When these sponsors check out your page and see that 1) you post content that is relevant to their brand, 2) that your followers fit with their target audience perfectly, and 3) that you’ve already purchased and praised their products, it makes the decision to sponsor you that much easier.
The above steps won’t transform your Instagram page into a money making machine overnight, but with enough time and energy they are bound to help you start getting paid to post on Instagram.
Have any tips or suggestions not explored above? Have you successfully (or not successfully) grown an Instagram page into a reliable source of income? Know a way of getting paid to post on Instagram that doesn’t involve influencer marketing? We’d love to hear from you.
In the meantime, to help you boost the amount of engagement you get on every single one of your posts, give our new automated Instagram pods a try! Instagram pods are groups of people on Instagram who have similar-sized and similarly-themed pages that agree to comment and Like on each other’s posts.
Here’s how AiGrow’s Automated Instagram Pods work:
Find (or create) a pod that applies to your niche.
Drag and drop your post.
Watch as all other members of your pod begin automatically Liking and commenting on your post.