Within the last few years, Instagram has grown from a platform to share pictures of your life with your family and friends, to a thriving business of product placement and brand building. With Instagram having an increase in use since its founding in 2010, brands have been able to use people on Instagram to advertise their products and reach a larger audience than normal advertising. These people are known as influencers, for their ability to influence their large followings, sometimes reaching as high as 5 million people.
For some influencers, Instagram is their nine-to-five job, and for others, it’s not. But they all have a few goals in common: 1. curate a feed of perfectly filtered and beautifully shot products they have been tasked to advertise and 2. collect their profit, which can range anywhere from $2,700 to $6,000 per post, according to the Financial Times.
If you’re thinking this sounds like the kind of job you’d like to have, check out some of the tips below to get your career off the ground.
Find a Niche
All influencers have some kind of platform that they work from. Whether it be beauty, food, lifestyle or even sustainable products and businesses, every person has a specialized community they appeal to. Find what you are passionate about and use it to create an appealing feed
Gather a Following
In order to get businesses to want to sponsor your content, you need to have a following of at least 100,000 people to get even the small businesses to look at you. The best ways to do this are through hashtags and personally sponsored content. Hashtags are a great way to tap into new followers. Have a dedicated hashtag that you use or watch which hashtags are trending and then tailor them to your posts. Or if worse comes to worse, you can spend a little money to boost your post to more people around you
Have a Theme
Aesthetics have become huge in the Instagram business, thanks to apps like VSCO and Adobe Lightroom, which exist to make your photos look appealing and professional. Finding your own aesthetic is key in building your own personal brand and making you stand out. The easiest way to do this is to start with a colored filter on your photos and build your feed surrounding that color. Choose a color that fits your personality and don’t be afraid to add your own personal touch to each photo
Create a Consistent Posting Schedule
The key to keeping your following is posting on a regular basis, even when you don’t have content to advertise. People will only want to continue following you if they care about you or your life, so share a little bit and give the people what they want. Also, by opening up about things in your personal life, you create a genuine connection with your followers, giving you more influence and credibility in their minds.
The number one thing to remember is to be creative and enjoy yourself. If you are just putting out content to put it out, your followers will notice, and chances are your following will decrease. Only advertise products you personally believe in so as not to damage your credibility or cause your followers to lose their trust in you. Influence responsibly.