Instagram is a top-tier social media platform with over a billion monthly active users. The brands and creators who don’t use Instagram might be missing out on so many opportunities. Instagram monetization wasn’t a thing until recently. However, it doesn’t mean social media gurus and influencers weren’t making money with Instagram.
It’s not always the Instagram monetization tools that make you money. Instead, it’s the viewership or followers that make you a fortune. Before Instagram introduced several ways to monetize your Instagram accounts, influencers were cashing in on the attention on the Instagram platform to earn a living.
- Give a shoutout to the brands.
- Tag companies to promote
- Take over their Instagram accounts
- Post videos about their products
- Live stream with the brands
- Unbox or review products
When creators have a loyal fan base, there is no stopping for them – brands reach out to them to sponsor their content or collaborate with them.
Instagram has always been a go-to platform for social media influencers and TV celebs. However, “Instagram influencers” and “Instagrammers” popped up a few years ago.
Have you ever thought of how Instagram influencers make money with Instagram? Well, there isn’t one way to monetize your Instagram account. Instead, you can do Instagram monetization in several ways.
Not sure what we mean by Instagram monetization? Sit tight because you’re about to learn what it is.
What is Instagram Monetization?
Instagram Monetization is a process that enables creators and Instagrammers to monetize their Instagram presence through different methods and make a living with it. Several in-app monetization options allow eligible Instagram accounts to make money from Instagram.
Usually, Instagram monetization is referred to as the in-app money-making features, but as mentioned earlier, these monetization features weren’t available in the past. However, Instagrammers were still able to generate revenue through their Instagram followers.
A lot of social media gurus used social media platforms like YouTube and Instagram as a pedestal to:
- Provide premium content upfront for free
- Get the attention by helping people
- Build an audience around their brands
These gurus might not be directly monetizing their YouTube or Instagram channels to make money. However, they build a community of like-minded people that is worth a lot more than a few hundred dollars.
When we discuss Instagram monetization, most of us think about how much Instagram would pay creators for a thousand views on a video or an hour-long live stream. The crux of this section is that don’t limit yourself to just an in-app banner ad or pay per thousand views video ad. Undoubtedly, Instagram has some crazy monetization options that will change how creators view this platform.
The truth is that the creators’ economy is evolving, and Instagram monetization is an important milestone. And, perhaps, it’s just the beginning.
You’re about to discover several Instagram monetization methods that could turn things around for you.
How to Get Monetization on Instagram
Instagram just announced a monetization plan for creators that could turn things around for Instagrammers. We’ll get to that program in a bit.
Before you laser focus on producing content for Instagram, it’s essential to know how to get monetization on Instagram or what could stop you from monetizing your Instagram account.
Related Read: Tips to Grow Your Audience and Stand Out on Instagram
We’ll ensure that we link to valuable resources available on the official Instagram website so that you can dive deep into the exact details, but we’ll also share bite-sized information with you immediately.
Follow the steps below to comprehend the whole idea of Instagram monetization without jeopardizing all your efforts.
Eligibility Criteria for Instagram Monetization
The fundamental step of applying for or enabling the monetization of an Instagram account is to be eligible for Instagram monetization.
Indeed, Instagram monetization isn’t available globally, so most of us might have to wait for it. Plus, don’t be surprised if the eligibility criteria are a bit different for each monetization method.
However, the below-mentioned points are the basic requirements for monetizing the Instagram account:
- The monetization method must be available in your country; for instance, Instagram Reel ads placement is only available in specified countries.
- Users must adhere to the terms and community guidelines set by Instagram.
- The FTC recommends Instagrammers must disclose the paid post using #ad or #sponsored hashtags.
- Most Instagram monetization methods require users to be citizens of the United States now, but it could change in the future.
- The user must have a creator or business Instagram account to be able to start monetization on Instagram.
- The Instagrammer must be 18 years old to be able to monetize their account.
- The user must adhere to the partner monetization guidelines.
Instagram has clearly stated what type of content might not work for making money on Instagram. It means that Instagram users must create content that complies with the Instagram content policies.
Every social media platform with a monetization program keeps check and balance on the content.
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YouTube doesn’t allow video monetization if it violates the community or copyright guidelines. Similarly, Instagram does have criteria for the creators to follow.
Following are the prohibited content areas that creators should avoid :
- Prohibited Categories: Misinformation, misleading medical information, unoriginal content
- Restricted Categories: Race, gender, national origin, age, political affiliation, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation, and religion
- Prohibited Behaviors: Soliciting engagement, engagement bait, and hate-mongering.
- Prohibited Formats: Static videos, static images, slideshows of images, looping videos, embedded ads, or text montages
Joining the Instagram Creator Marketplace
Instagram has recently announced the Instagram Creator Marketplace, which might not be globally available right away. Instead, it’s expected that Instagram would roll out the creator marketplace feature for the U.S. creators first.
Instagram announced last month that they’re testing an invite-only creator marketplace platform with a selected number of brands.
“Instagram’s creator marketplace is a new destination that allows brands to find creators they may want to connect with. In addition, they can use the desktop experience within Meta Business Suite to filter creators by gender, age, number of followers, and interests,” they said in a blog post.
Instagram Creator Marketplace reminds us of TikTok Creator Marketplace; it’s TikTok’s in-house platform for influencer marketing. If you have no idea how to make money on TikTok, you’re missing out on a lot of monetization opportunities.
It looks pretty clear that Instagram money-making for creators would revolve around Instagram Creator Marketplace. However, it won’t be accessible to users across the globe. The tech giants always have to look through the logistics, partners, and requirements to enable such features worldwide.
Instagram Monetization Strategy: How It Works
Instagram monetization is relatively new, and it’s okay if you don’t have a game plan yet. In fact, it won’t be available in most countries for the next few months or so. However, it’s expected that Instagram would roll out the monetization feature to U.S. Instagram users at first.
However, there is no harm in prepping yourself and getting your Instagram strategy in line with monetization requirements. If you haven’t taken Instagram seriously, now is the time to start doing so.
Let’s head over to the essential elements of establishing a long-lasting Instagram monetization strategy. The following points will help you figure out how you can make money on Instagram:
The attention of the Audience
The audience’s attention is probably the most important thing on social media, especially if you want to grow and make money regardless of the platform. The audience’s attention means people listen to you or want to know your opinion about certain things.
To get the attention of the audience, you may have to be smart right from the beginning. Besides being wise, you also have to be good at something you will share with the audience.
Find your brand proposition and try to sell that. For example, if you’re funny and enjoy making good jokes, this could be your superpower to entertain people through YouTube or TikTok.
If you’re passionate about photography, put your great photos on Instagram with proper branding and hashtags – you’ll surely blow up at some point.
A harsh reality is that the audience’s attention comes to those who are good at their craft – it could take some time, but eventually, it happens.
So figure out your stuff and keep pushing hard unless you start attracting a specific niche audience around your social media platform like Instagram.
Here’s an example:
I started watching woodwork pictures and videos on Instagram for fun, and I noticed that Instagram’s algorithm started suggesting similar accounts to follow.
I learned that it’s essential to choose and stick to your niche so that the Instagram algorithm understands in what niche your Instagram account falls or what type of audience you’re trying to reach.
Impact on the Followers
The people’s attention is the stepping stone of the process as it could come as a result of a viral photo or video. However, the real test is how one converts that initial eyeballs into a dedicated following.
Once you start getting attention from the audience, try to impact their lives through meaningful or entertaining content. Impact on the followers happens when your content is helping the audience in making decisions or shaping their thoughts positively.
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You’ll get a lot of feedback through comments and DMs if you’re impacting lives through your actions, behaviors, or content.
So don’t miss out on the step to build a strong Instagram monetization strategy.
I don’t have a large Instagram audience, but I still try to engage with them and help them out.
Take a look at the response to my recent post:
I get comments and likes on almost every post.
Developing a Content Plan
A content plan is a roadmap of content to publish on any social media platform. A lot of Instagrammers who start to get noticed by the audience go with the flow. They don’t develop a content strategy for their Instagram accounts and end up frustrated at some point.
The reason why developing a content plan is key to success is that it gives you a long-term, sustainable content publishing pattern to follow. Establishing a robust content plan is an excellent Instagram growth hack that anyone can try out.
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Garyvee is an excellent example:
Gary’s content team posts photos, videos, stories, and reels – in other words, they utilize the Instagram features to the fullest. No wonder Gary has over 10 million Instagram followers.
A quick hack you can take away from Gary Vaynerchuk is that his team repurposes his YouTube videos and posts on Instagram and TikTok.
Since our target is to monetize Instagram, it would only be possible when you have a growing number of followers and high engagement on the platform. So use every tool or hack available at your disposal to get more eyeballs around.
Choosing a Monetization Method
Most Instagrammers and influencers use third-party influencer marketing platforms to make money from Instagram. However, the recent announcement of Instagram Creator Marketplace will change the game.
Perhaps, Instagrammers won’t have to rely on influencer marketing platforms to earn money from their Instagram accounts.
Instagram can be monetized in several ways, such as paid partnerships, branded content, paid mentions, collaborations, etc.
Instagrammers have already been using these monetization methods to make money from Instagram.
Since the Instagram Creator Marketplace won’t be available to most users until it’s made available globally, Instagrammers could try other ways to make money on Instagram.
Here’s a quick example of monetizing your Instagram account:
Aubrey Alley is an Instagram influencer monetizing her Instagram account through affiliate marketing. She is using “affiliate marketing” – an Instagram monetization to allow you to promote products and earn commissions on the sales.
Strengthening the Relationship
Whether you’re using a third-party influencer marketing platform or the Instagram Creator Marketplace to monetize your Instagram account doesn’t matter. The key to making consistent money is strong relationships with brands.
Always prefer relationships over a few dollars – you can’t sabotage your relationship with brands that might work with you for an extended period.
Similarly, you can’t let a brand use you and let go once they’re done without proper compensation. It’s a two-way process that gets smoother over time. Always prefer using influencer marketing platforms or online invoicing tools to keep track of everything.
We’ve written a detailed guide on how to make money from influencer marketing – you can check that out for more information.
I stumbled upon David Beckham’s Instagram video about the Maserati:
The former star footballer was having fun sitting in the car. Plus, he tagged the Maserati Instagram account in the caption. So it didn’t look like a paid post. It seemed like David Beckham appreciated the quality of the car.
That’s all. I hope it clarifies my point.
A successful Instagram monetization strategy is unified – one can’t hate their niche and still make money out of it. The cohesion between the creator and niche is the answer to making money on Instagram.
Read Up: Instagram Hacks to Boost Engagement
How to Make Money on Instagram
Check out these steps for making money on Instagram:
Choose an Instagram niche you’re interested in
The first step to making money on Instagram is to start on the platform to get recognized. It won’t be a get-quick-rich scheme. Instead, it will take energy, sweat, and time to get there.
To start on the right foot, you need to choose the “right” Instagram niche – it means you shouldn’t begin with a random Instagram account to post every type of content.
It has to be a specific niche account so that you can become an authority in that space. Choosing the best Instagram niche (and sticking to it) paves the way for an Instagrammer.
It could be any niche such as food, fashion, travel, pets, sports, news, fitness, design, events, entrepreneurship, etc.
Setup your Instagram account to get started
Once you’re done with niche selection, go on with creating your Instagram account. The primary key to making money on Instagram is creating or switching to a professional account. For example, you could choose a business or creator account – you can’t monetize personal accounts.
Setting up an Instagram account is just the beginning; the next part is to prepare your account for publishing. Write down the bio, add a link, and re-adjust your brand name/username. Once it’s all set up, you’re ready to publish content. F
Bulk create Instagram posts to publish or schedule
Instagram content publishing is the backbone of getting followers and growing on the platform. However, the high-quality content would take your Instagram account to the next level.
Despite what it appears to be, there are some complexities involved. Ensure you have a content plan to create Instagram posts, including images and videos. Plus, don’t stop doing a few live streams once you get a little traction. It’s vital to get to know your followers through live interactions.
There are two important aspects of publishing content on Instagram. The first is creating bulk posts, and the second is scheduling your Instagram posts.
You can’t grow an Instagram account if you post one picture per week – you have to up your content game to get noticed and make things happen for you. Try to create a balance between photos and videos. Remember that most Instagram monetization options require videos to display ads or sponsored content.
Furthermore, invest in a social media scheduling tool for scheduling your Instagram posts – there is no way you’d create and post two to three pieces of content every day.
Use relevant hashtags and alt texts on the posts
Hashtags are no surprise – we all have been using them on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. When it comes to growing your Instagram, they could be vital to the whole process. Don’t sleep on this opportunity.
You can do a little bit of research and find out three to four sets of hashtags in your niche – keep 8 to 12 hashtags in each set. Then, use each set turn by turn; this way, you’ll be able to utilize dozens of hashtags on your Instagram account.
Furthermore, including alt texts to Instagram posts is not something you’d read everywhere – the alt text helps platforms identify the content and improves the relevance of the piece of content.
Get social with the audience to increase engagement
Social media success relies on the audience’s response to your content. Getting social with the audience means developing a connection through your content and strengthening it with communication.
Plus, the biggest perk of getting social on Instagram is that it increases your engagement, and thus, it helps your Instagram account gets noticed organically on the platform. Brands and entrepreneurs run Instagram ads to get popped up – they sure get views and clicks, but it can’t beat organic views and clicks.
Try to maximize your engagement through responding to the comments, thanking people for liking your posts, and replying to all genuine comments/DMs. To ensure better reach, choose the best time to post on Instagram and post consistently.
Instagram engagement may not help you make money, but it always significantly impacts Instagram account growth.
Use Instagram Creator Marketplace to make money
Instagram has just announced the Creator Marketplace that will change Instagram monetization forever. Once it’s available to everyone, most of us won’t need a third-party influencer marketing platform to make money on Instagram.
Here are the ways to monetize your Instagram videos through Creator Marketplace:
- Branded Content: You could get paid by collaborating with brands to promote their products while keeping your style alive in your content.
- Badges: A badges system is a fantastic way to monetize your fan base on Instagram. The loyal fans could buy specific badges from your Instagram profile to post during live streams, etc.
- Shopping: It’s Instagram’s native shopping tool that will allow you to tag products or brands within your Instagram posts. Now it’s an excellent opportunity to sell your merchandise.
- Affiliates: Instagram is all set to introduce an in-house affiliate marketing platform that will house a select number of brands to work with. Instagrammers would hand-pick products or brands to promote and earn commissions off of those sales.
- Bonuses: It’s an opportunity to earn extra money for your work on Instagram. Instagram has a Reels Play feature – it is a bonus program that pays creators for the number of times your Reels are played.
- Subscriptions: This feature allows creators to earn a recurring monthly income by offering exclusive content to their most loyal followers.
Instagram Creator Marketplace is just the beginning – the opportunities are limitless. Once you have the niche-based content and the right audience on the platform, you’re good to go.
We shared how you can make money off of Instagram. Plus, the Instagram monetization eligibility, requirements, and strategies to adopt to get over the line.
The most important statement of this article is that using Instagram (or any other social media platform for that matter) if you’re there to make money.
On the other hand, you could make money on Instagram just by sharing your knowledge about your hobby just because you’re passionate about it. Your passion would keep you focused on publishing good-quality content regularly.
Most Instagrammers fail to make money through Instagram because they start Instagram to make money – don’t fall for this money-making trap. Instead, start Instagram just because you enjoy your niche and love the Instagram platform.
I’m sure you’ll be able to pull this off.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How do I monetize my Instagram account?
To start monetizing your Instagram account, you should create quality content and continuously engage with your followers. Reaching out to a large audience is the key to getting more people to see your posts. Instagram allows you to become an influencer, do affiliate marketing, sell products on the platform, shift traffic to your website, promote your business, sell your products, and dropship.
2. How many followers do I need to monetize my Instagram?
You should have at least 10,000 followers. You must be over 18. Ensure you adhere to Instagram’s Partner Monetization guidelines.
3. How to become eligible for monetization on Instagram?
Content creators and publishers can only monetize the content they created or were involved in producing or directly featuring. It is not possible to monetize content that is not original or reproduced without making meaningful enhancements (commentary, parody, creative editing, etc.).
Also Read: Guide to Instagram Collaborative Collections
Hassaan Khan is a freelance writer for SAAS companies, e-commerce stores, and niche websites. He has contributed to SEMrush, ThriveGlobal, BloggingCage, AllBloggingTips, and several other publications. He builds niche websites, publishes e-books, and helps website investors with his done-for-you niche site-building service.