Thanks to the wonderful world of the internet, it’s entirely possible to make an income simply from posting on social media nowadays. The average influencer earns around $3,000 a month from their Instagram account alone, and that’s before you factor in the fact that an influencer with a million followers will skyrocket to around $15,000 per month. That might sound like an ambitious goal, but plenty of influencers do manage to achieve it, so if you’re looking to get into this career, the potential for making money is there. Here’s a beginner’s guide to becoming an influencer on social media.
Don’t quit your day job…just yet
First and foremost, it’s important not to make any rash decisions when you’re thinking of becoming an influencer. The road to getting popular on social media is long and difficult, and you may never get that lucky break that truly catapults you into the big leagues. With that in mind, it’s important not to simply walk away from your day job; you may find that doing so leaves you at a dead end financially.
Of course, there’s a possibility that you simply can’t stand your current job and you desperately want to leave to pursue your dream. That’s admirable, but you should still make sure you have a financial cushion. It’s a good idea to apply for whatever benefits you’re entitled to in this situation, and don’t forget that you can always look into loans for people on benefits if you really need to get an extra cash injection at any stage.
Raise your content game
What sets great influencers apart from also-rans? In a single word: content. The content you create as an influencer will have a huge impact on whether or not you manage to achieve lasting popularity. You can use all the tricks in the book to make yourself social media famous, but it won’t work if the content you make doesn’t have any kind of lasting appeal for your followers.
So, how do you make great social media content? Well, this differs by platform. On Instagram, for example, make sure your photos tell a story; let them speak for you and make the point you want to make. TikTok videos should be innovative and creative, using the small amount of time available to you as best you can. Tweets should be brief, witty, and insightful. Each platform has a different approach you should take when it comes to creating great content.
Create a concrete schedule
Again, one of the things that sets influencers apart from anyone else on social media is the regularity with which they post. Creating a solid, concrete schedule and sticking to it is a huge part of your content strategy on social media. First off, it’s important to make sure that you post regularly. Depending on the platform, once, twice, or even three times per day should suffice.
As well as posting regularly, you should also make sure that you’re posting at the right times. Each platform has a different point of peak activity, which is when the most users are accessing that platform and engaging with its content. You should aim to post around this time, because it will significantly increase your visibility. Generally speaking, lunchtimes are a good time to post.
Know your demographic
First and foremost, you should do extensive research into the demographics that access each social media platform. Twitter’s user base, for example, skews differently to TikTok’s in terms of age, gender, and other characteristics, so make sure you know your stuff in this regard. You can then use that strategy to determine what your personal demographic might be.
Your personal demographic refers to exactly who your followers are and what they want from your content. If, for example, you’re producing content for a specialist audience, then your strategy is going to look different to someone who might produce content for a general audience. It’s important to think about your skills and leverage them as best you can in order to create a brand identity for yourself as an influencer.
If there’s one thing that can be called the cornerstone of influencer culture, it’s collaboration. Reaching out across the divide and talking to other content creators is one of the most critical ways you can boost your following as an influencer. Try to find other content creators that are similar to you in terms of tone and approach, then ask them if they want to create something together. Don’t forget to use features like TikTok’s Stitch and Duet!
As well as other creators, you should also be looking to collaborate and work with brands. This is the main way in which influencers make money on their platforms; they partner up with brands and businesses in order to promote products and services in a more naturalistic way than traditional advertising. Again, you should be very discerning in terms of the brands you work with, but don’t be afraid to reach out to a brand and ask them if they’d like to collaborate with you.
Unfortunately, there’s no single “golden path” when it comes to becoming an influencer. If you ask a hundred content creators on social media how they got to where they are, they’ll all have a different story. Nevertheless, we believe these five tips are a good jumping-off point; you probably won’t find an influencer out there who didn’t do these things when they were on their way up. By leveraging these tips and injecting a little of your own personality into your content, you can succeed as an influencer too!