Whether you have 500 or 5 million followers, you have an engaged audience that for one reason or another, digs what you do. You have become on the most primal level and for lack of a better word, a celebrity.
Are you being attacked by paparazzi on the street? Probably not. But you have something that is valuable … an engaged and interested audience and you have every right to monetize them just as other celebrities do. Brands have recognized this and more and more you can see “everyday” people making money from their audience. Crowd funded celebrities if you will.
You may not have a PR team or stylists surrounding you but you’ve proven that there is an audience that is interested in and actively consuming the content that you are creating. Here are 4 ways to monetize your social media following:
We all know how product placement works in TV or film. Consider, in the movie Rebels Without A Cause, James Dean used an Ace Comb – then as a result Ace Comb experienced a huge jump in sales, with every teenage boy who saw the movie equating Ace combs with what someone cool like James Dean would use.
The same theory applies to social media. If people on Instagram see someone they admire using a certain product, they’re more likely to want to use the products themselves. The marketing agency Mobile Media Lab estimates that for Instagram users with more than 100,000 followers, you can earn $700 to $900 per photo.
Just don’t “pull a Disick” and carelessly make it blatant you’re being paid to promote a product. Some subtlety and discretion needs to be involved so your audience doesn’t think you’re sacrificing your brand integrity to make a buck.
Instead of promoting someone else’s products, it makes even more sense to promote your own. Creating your own online store is simple to setup through an e-commerce platform such as Shopify, and finding an on demand dropshipper like Gooten is pretty much is all you need to get running.
Gooten allows you to do custom print fulfillment, so you can easily upload your own designs onto products from their catalog and sell those items. Gooten takes care of everything associated with production, so all you have to do is design cool stuff your audience will want to buy, and then promote it through your social media channels. You’ll never have to manage inventory, and everything you sell is for profit.
Become an Amazon Affiliate
Amazon’s affiliate program allows you to make commission anytime someone makes a purchase from a link you provide to Amazon. How it usually works is you cultivate a following promoting specific items on social media. You then include the affiliate link on the Amazon item so that when a follower makes a purchase, Amazon can track it back to you. Some call it the lazy man’s way of making money online but affiliate marketing can end up working out well.
Sell Rights to Your Photos
Many photo-sharing sites allow members to sell their photos rights-managed, which allows the client who buys your photo to own the rights of your photo exclusively for a limited period of time. This allows you to receive a higher fee for your photo, but then limits the amount of people who can purchase your photos repeatedly.
Microstock agencies such as Shutterstock and iStockPhoto allow you make commission on your submitted photos. Make sure to read all the fine print, and understand exactly what your rights are, what their commission is, as well as reading the guidelines to make sure you adhere to their rules.
Join the growing number of individuals today supporting their lifestyle through their social following. You’ve done the hard part - building your audience. Now it’s time to make it pay off!