as an entrepreneur and a blogger, Instagram has been the most important part of my income for a couple of years.

I joined Instagram several years ago and have managed to gain over 25,000 followers on my account @veerabianca. A few years ago, it was easy to grow an account and mine would get 100 new followers a day organically. Nowadays, growing a larger Instagram account fast with quality content takes a bit more of an effort.

How does one make a living from Instagram, you ask? Well, first, don’t believe the rumors that say you would make money directly from the app paying you for every post — it is absolutely incorrect. Let me explain exactly how and how much money I make from Instagram.

1. Sponsored campaigns with tourism boards

As a travel blogger, most of my work is related to tourism businesses, such as destinations, hotels, and airlines. There are usually two types of trips:

  • Press trips where the inviting party covers all costs but do not pay a fee for content, giving you the freedom to cover the destination exactly how you want and post nothing or ten posts a day.
  • Well-planned campaigns where the brand and the blogger both agree on the amount of content and the themes of the content to be created (note that opinions can’t be bought).

Usually, Instagram posts are an important part of a sponsored campaign and depending on the number of posts, I charge between 100-500 Euros per post.

2. Sponsored posts

At times, companies only want to purchase 1 or 2 posts on your Instagram to market their product. On my account, most of these have been accessories and watches. It’s important that the influencer has the freedom to create the post in their own style and to only post about it if they honestly like the product.

When I work with a watch brand, for example, the company needs to deliver their product to my home and pay a fee of around 300 Euros for the post on my account.

3. Brand ambassadorships with clothing brands

While I still focus on travel, in the past year, I’ve tried to add more lifestyle and more of myself into my photos. This has led to followers asking me about my outfits, which has made me realize that Instagram might just be the absolute best platform for clothing brands to market their products. After all, I make most of my shopping decisions based on what I see bloggers wearing on Instagram, so I could certainly influence my followers.

I used to think marketing fashion was only for bloggers who look like Victoria’s Secret models, but I quickly realized that my place in the market was to promote fabulous plus-size fashion to my fellow curvy travelers. These collaborations can be yearly contracts where you get delivered new collections each season and agree to post about them a certain amount of times and tag the brand in your outfit photo. Some also pay according to purchases made through your account, which can be tracked through sales codes, such as ‘veerabianca10’ to get 10% off at some named online store.

4. Instagram marketing consulting for companies

Most of my income through Instagram doesn’t come directly from my own account, but from helping companies succeed with Instagram marketing. I consult companies on how to get more out of their Instagram accounts and I also work with some companies on monthly contracts, creating their content and maintaining their Instagram presence. From this, I make between 500-2000 Euros per month.

5. Instagram training and lectures for companies and schools

On top of this all, I also give lectures and workshops for companies and schools. I’ve also done a few larger workshops and strategies for hotel chains providing their staff with a half-day workshop on how to take photos, how to use hashtags, etc.. These projects vary dramatically, so I make anything between 500-10,000 euros a month from Instagram workshops and lectures.
 

To sum it up, my income from Instagram varies each month depending on projects. Currently, I make about 2000 euros from Instagram-related work per month.

You want to make money from your Instagram account, too?

The most important rule of any business is to not spend your day sitting at home waiting to be contacted. Sure, when you’ve built enough networks and presence, companies start to approach you with good offers, but if you believe you have an Instagram account worth doing business around, don’t hesitate to contact companies yourself. You’ll easily spot brands that work with influencers from Instagrammers you already follow — why not reach out to them with a direct message?

As Instagram has become such an important marketplace, there are also many companies helping Instagram influencers find suitable clients. You can sign up for services such as Whalar to get more sponsored posts and campaigns for your account.

This article originally appeared on Veera Bianca and is republished here with permission.

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