Do you love Instagram? Looking to turn your content creation into a paying gig? Instagram offers plenty of opportunities to make money for those with impressive engagement rates and a high number of followers

Businesses all over the globe trust Instagram influencers to spread the word about their products and keep their sales high. If you're running a successful page, it might be time to look into generating some extra cash. Some of the top influencers on the platform are worth millions of dollars, so it's certainly lucrative if you know what you're doing! Here's how you too can make money on Instagram. 

Some Platform Facts First 

If you're going to turn your page into a business, there are some things you should know first. Last year, there were over 500,000 influencers active on Instagram, and while this sounds like a lot of people, when you compare it to the one billion users the platform has, it's a drop of water in a very big lake. That means two things: there will be competition, but there is also room for more influencers to set up their mantles and start making an impact. 

Most of Instagram's base is under 35 years of age, so you're appealing to a much younger group of people. This will definitely affect how you market your page and appeal to an audience, so you'll want to do some serious research on how to appeal to more people. The more followers you have, the better. There are even legitimate ways to boost your follower count (go here to learn about the best way to buy Instagram followers in 2020.)

Essentially, you're going to be running a business, so it doesn't hurt to have a plan. Setting short and long term goals can help keep you focused and ensure your page is always growing. 

Affiliate Marketing 

One way to make some cash on Instagram is by becoming an affiliate marketer. This will involve selling other brands' products, so if you're uncomfortable actually participating in a sale, this option isn't for you. You'll only get paid when your followers actually buy the items you're helping to sell. Usually, this means a link to a specific website with a discount code or your username as a promo code. You'll be paid based on how many units you were able to sell. 

The only problem with affiliate marketing is that there's really no good way to gloss over the fact that you're downright plugging a product, which could potentially cause your followers to become annoyed. If you follow a page for beauty tips, you probably don't want to be sold to every time there's a new post, and for good reason. Remember that your followers are there for your content, and although you certainly have a right to earn money in whatever way you choose, you also have a responsibility to keep your followers in mind as well. 

Affiliate marketing really only works if you have a solid following and users stay engaged with your content, so you'll want to make sure you're doing everything you can to keep followers engaged. The more engaged they are, the more they'll trust your word when it comes to the third-party products you're selling. 

Influencers 

You've probably heard this term about a million times, but it's the #1 way to make money on Instagram. As an influencer, you won't be directly selling anything, but rather promoting products that you like. You can decline offers from certain brands you don't want to support, so you'll be able to customize your money-making experience. There are hundreds of thousands of influencers active on Instagram today, but that doesn't mean there isn't room for more! 

Keep your content original and engaging to maximize engagement and keep your follower count growing. Brands like to see genuine channels posting great content that followers enjoy; it helps establish that sense of trust between you and your followers that you can leverage to advertise products. The more your followers trust you, the easier it is to convince them that x product is the best one on the market. 

Many modern brands are turning away from traditional marketing techniques and pushing for more modernized methods like using an influencer. The fact is, when you're appealing to an audience that's under 35, you need to be on social media. That's just where people 35 and under congregate. As of this year, about 90% of young adults and teens use at least one social media site

Becoming an influencer can be a long, hard road, but with the right amount of effort, research, and determination, you can make it happen. Thousands have already done so, and effectively helped changed the way brands market to their customers. 

Your Own Brand 

Creating your own business from your Instagram page usually occurs after you've reached a certain level of success with your page. 

According to viralrace.com, many Instagrammers will gain millions of followers and then launch a clothing line or other product line using their Instagram fame as leverage. 

This is a smart business move only if your followers are engaged with your content and interested in what you're selling. It's always a good idea to create a business in your niche as well. If you're running a clothing page, launching a new type of dog food probably won't do as well as if you launched a custom clothing line. 

Stick with your niche and work with other influencers on the platform to spread the word about your new brand. Be sure to include lots of marketing in your initial plan, as even with millions of followers, you can usually only expect a certain percentage of them to actually support your new brand. 

If you have a million followers, a million people aren't going to buy your products; a percentage of them could be fake, inactive, or  bot accounts, and not everyone is interested in a new business. Keep the focus, put in the work, and leverage your followers properly, and you'll be well on your way to making good money on Instagram!