1. Sell your social media services
One of the best ways to make money from Instagram is to build a popular profile and then use it to get hired as a consultant or social media manager.
Just look at Gary Vaynerchuk. He built these huge social media profiles with his own content and now makes millions selling social media marketing services with companies like VaynerMedia.
Or, you could even use email and PayPal. You don't necessarily need to pay for a website to make a social media services business work.
2. Build new accounts and sell them
For Viral Accounts, you'll need at least 40,000 active followers before you can list your Instagram profile for sale.
For FameSwap, it can vary, but you might shoot for the same general criteria just to be safe.
3. Sponsored posts
If you want to get paid just to have lots of great followers who love you like many “social media influencers” do, you can try making money from sponsored posts.
There are two main ways you can do this once you have quite a few followers:
- Use sites like iFluenz to get matched with brands that will pay you to include their products in your content in exchange for payment.
- Have a contact email or website where brands can reach out to you about a sponsored post deal.
iFluenz requires 5,000 followers if you're interested in using them to get matches with brands. You can get an estimate of how much you could make on iFluenz by using their calculator here.
To see some sponsored post examples on Intagram, just search #ad in the search bar. You're required to include that hashtag as disclosure to fans when you are posting something that is a paid promotion.
4. Paid Shoutouts
Another great way to make money from Instagram, especially if you're going for more of the influencer route, is to have paid shoutouts.
Shoutouts are basically endorsements of other profiles in a similar niche to yours.
You might have a photo with you and the other user together with a mention of their profile in the description or something along those lines.
One website you can use to get paid to give people shoutouts on Instagram is Shoutcart.
With Shoutcart, there is no minimum follower count needed and they take about 10% of sales for their commission.
If you want to get creative and actually sell some products using Instagram, you can promote your own line of merch.
Merch can include coffee mugs, hoodies, t-shirts, phone cases and much more.
The thing is, you might want to use print-on-demand sites like Teespring or Redbubble because it can be very expensive as well as stressful to deal with manufacturers, packing, shipping and customer support.
With many print-on-demand sites, you just upload your design and you can create many different products for sale.
The company you sell it with will take a cut of the sale in exchange for doing the printing, packing, and shipping of the products.
Lots of gamers and influencers sell their own merch like this.
And if you're not very artistic, don't worry, you can use graphic design sites like DesignCrowd to outsource the creation of your designs.
6. Graphic design services
Speaking of graphic design services, you can also do all sorts of designs on your Instagram profile and then sell your services as a designer.
7. Affiliate marketing
Another common way to make money online is by earning commissions from product sales through affiliate marketing.
If you want to do affiliate marketing on Instagram, there are a lot of ways you could do it:
- Have shortened links in photo descriptions where you show yourself using the product.
- Include a link in your bio to a place where you can collect emails and market different products to subscribers over time.
- Have a link in your bio to a blog post with pros and cons of product you've been promoting while including affiliate links.
One great example of a niche profile that earns affiliate revenue is ThisIsWhyImBroke.
This profile promotes a lot of crazy gift ideas and has blog posts with affiliate links to buy them.
8. Real Estate Agent/Car Dealer
If you're a real estate agent, car dealer, or something along those lines, Instagram can be a great place to show off whats for sale.
You could do images, video tours, and build a following of locals without having to compete with worldwide creators like most influencers.
Get some ideas by searching you city name with the industry you're in via hashtags like #losangelesrealestate.
9. Get traffic to YouTube channel or streaming
If you're a YouTuber or video game streamer, you can use Instagram as kind of a behind-the-scenes or teaser profile to build you following.
You can cut your videos into smaller clips and post highlights and quick tips on Instagram, for instance.
Of course, you'll want to have a link to your channel in your bio so it is easy for people to find you.
This could lead to more memberships, ad revenue, affiliate revenue, donations, and more.
10. Sell digital products
Last but not least, you can sell all kinds of digital products online.
Here are just a few options:
- WordPress Themes/Plugins
You could promote them on Instagram with little quotes from books, short tutorials with the software, videos showcasing website themes, or even short teaser clips of courses.