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Making Money on Instagram: Everything You Need to Know About

Updated on by in Make Money Online

In this day and age, it’s almost embarrassing if you don’t have an account on at least one major social network. And while most of these online communities have started out as a tool for bringing people together, they also have another purpose. Resourceful as ever, businessmen and marketers have found a way to use social media to promote and sell their products and services.


It’s a lucrative industry, whether you are doing it part-time, or as your main source of income. Today we are going to talk about Instagram. Although it has only been around a few years, it has become extremely popular and brought users plenty of opportunities to make money with it.

How to Make Money on Instagram

First of all, let’s dig deeper into the numbers. According to research done by Yahoo Tech, the earning figures per post depend on the number of followers you have on Instagram. For instance, if over 100,000 people are following you, you can expect to earn anywhere between $700 and $900 dollars per sponsored post. Those numbers rise to about $3000 if you have more than 500,000 followers, and if more than $1,000,000 people follow you on Instagram and you manage to strike up a collaboration with a global brand, you can expect to earn over $50,000 per post.


Instagrammers like Song of Style, We Wore That, and Sincerely Jules are great examples of that. And if we are talking about celebrities on Instagram, all bets are off. For instance, Selena Gomez has over 124 million followers (maybe even more). The price of her sponsored post is close to $550,000! Why do brands pay that much? Well, if their target audience is similar to that of Selena Gomez, they get instant exposure, and probably earn millions of dollars. Other top-earning celebrities are Cristiano Ronaldo, LeBron James, and yes, all members of the Kardashian family.

Obviously, you can’t just start charging money right after you join Instagram.You need to build a following. Then you can start earning in one of the following ways:

Sponsored Posts/Product Placement

We’ve already touched on this, but to get a better idea, check out Patrick Janelle on Instagram. He has close to 500,000 followers on his profile which showcases his lifestyle, mostly oriented toward food, traveling, and fashion. One of his biggest successes was the collaboration with Bloomingdale’s. He arranged items sold at Bloomingdale’s into creative gift collages, mentioned the brand, and it was a massive hit.

Covering Events

As an influential Instagrammer, you will probably get invited to exclusive events that aren’t covered on live television or by journalists. You can charge for your coverage of these events. We are talking about VIP after-parties, fashion events, festivals, movie premieres, nightclub openings, and so on.

Hosting Events

A lot of brands are paying Instagram influencers to host their events because they profit very quickly from it. However, this can work only if you have a massive following and are basically a social media celebrity. In that case, brands will be in a rush to do business with you, because you can boost their brand awareness and drive a ton of traffic their way.

Promote Your Own Services

If you are able to offer high-quality services to your customers, Instagram is probably the best platform to promote it. Let’s assume you are a fitness coach. There are several different ways you can attract your potential customers via Instagram. Posting motivational workout images, short videos, as well as photos of healthy meals will have people flocking to your gym.

Sell Your Products

In case you have a product that you want to sell, Instagram works like a charm for that, too. The most popular products promoted on Instagram are cosmetics, clothing, food (especially cakes and healthy snacks), handmade ornaments and accessories, jewelry, and so on. If you can manage to present them in the appealing and creative way, most of your followers won’t be able to resist the temptation to buy them.

Sell Your Photos

Since Instagram is all about the visuals and using photography to convey emotions, place, or time, it makes total sense to use it as a marketing tool for professional photographers. Of course, there are other platforms where photographers can sell their work, but none of them can provide as much publicity as Instagram.

Leverage Your Experience to Become an Instagram Marketer

After you have figured out which one of the above works best for you in terms of audience engagement, brand awareness, and finances, you can focus on it and take it to another level.


According to a survey involving 5,000 Instagram influencers, about 42% of them were able to charge between $200 and $500 per sponsored post.Now let’s take $400 as an average price for a post made by mid-level influencer (the one that has less than 100,000 followers). If we make a simple calculation, we’ll see that in order to earn $10,000, such Instagrammer would have to make 25 sponsored posts. Yes, it’s not that easy, but possible.

However, you should keep in mind that increasing the number of sponsored posts can turn away some of your followers. That is why you need to make sure that there is a balance between your integrity and what you make. It’s always a better idea to focus on growing your following because you will be able to demand more money per post.

What to Focus on

Part of the reason why Instagram is so popular is that it relies on the power of visuals with which its users tell their stories. Its interface is also simple and easy to use, even on the go. And while Twitter is all about what you have to say using a limited number of characters, Instagram is about the quality of the photos shared, as well as providing a catchy caption to go along with it.

This is why some of the most popular bloggers and celebrities out there hire professional writers to get their captions just right. According to Robert Brown, who works as a content writer at, there are three key ingredients which make up the perfect photo caption on Instagram:

“The caption itself needs to be concise because you have limited time to grab viewer’s attention. It should also provide context for the photo so that it’s a glimpse into the life of the Instagrammer in question. Finally, you need to include additional information, such as the brand you are promoting (if any), as well as relevant hashtags and filters which you have used to create the photo.”


Although it was initially designed to be a platform where you can post your selfies and share your life with the world, Instagram has turned into a lot more. You can build a serious business if you decide to implement the tips we have shared in this article, and learn from the examples above. Good luck!

Author: Zake Alfie

Zake Alfie is a travel blogger and search engine optimization expert in He is in charge of several online projects and provides consultations on optimization and website promotion. He loves experimenting and finding new SEO tactics.

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