Turning Dreams Into Reality: How to Become an Instagram Influencer

Instagram influencers can earn as much as $100,000 for a single post. But if you want to be making the big bucks, you have to start somewhere. This means first becoming an Instagram influencer who takes smaller payments as they work their way up.

Being an Instagram influencer was once a side gig, but now it’s a full-time job for a surprisingly large number of people. But being an influencer doesn’t mean just posting pictures of whatever you feel like, whenever you feel like it.

You need to approach it the same way you would approach any entrepreneurial gig.

If you make it as an influencer, you can enjoy perks ranging from free merch to never setting foot in an office again. Ready to learn what it takes?

We’ve put together this complete guide to how to become an influencer — keep reading to learn more!

What Is an Instagram Influencer?

Today, few people are asking “What is Instagram?” The social media site is one of the most popular in the world. But even if you’ve heard of the platform and its influencers before, you might not be clear on exactly what those influencers do.

Basically, influencers are people who have an established audience on their Instagram that trusts and listens to them.

Having lots of followers is important — people can rarely become influencers with under 10,000 followers. But you also need to have influence over those followers.

The concept is that if you suggest an item is worth buying, lots of your followers will listen. Being an influencer means being someone who social media followers look up to and trust. You give them good advice and recommendations, so when you say something’s worth a purchase, they believe you. 

As you can imagine, this has value for brands. If you use their product and recommend it to your followers, they’ll get lots of new customers. That’s why for an influencer, each individual post is potentially worth thousands of dollars.

It is possible for influencers to work on other social media sites, like YouTube and personal blogs. But Instagram makes the perfect platform in many ways.

It’s image-based, so posting images and quick videos of products makes sense. And creating a great Instagram post is much faster and easier than creating a great blog post or YouTube videos.

Now, let’s delve into what it takes to become an influencer yourself.

How to Become an Influencer: Your Step-by-Step Guide

In the world of social media influencers, there are no guarantees. We can’t promise that you’ll be able to grow your base to the thousands of loyal followers influencers need to have. But if you never try, you’ll never find out if you can succeed — so start with these steps. 

1. Get Familiar with Instagram

First, you need to have a solid grasp of how Instagram works. This doesn’t just mean downloading the app and posting some photos. You need to consider how to create posts that will create a personal brand followers will stay loyal to. 

Start by experimenting with what you post, and see what gets the most attention. You might also work on creating an “Instagram theme.”

This means that all your posts on your account have similarities in color, subject, or style, so when people look at your complete feed it’s branded and cohesive. 

As an influencer, you need to become your own brand on Instagram. So before you have a lot of followers, take some time to experiment with what your brand could look like, and find out what works.

2. Narrow Down Your Niche

Being an influencer doesn’t mean you’re pushing out random products of all kinds to your followers. You need to have a niche — that’s part of your brand.

Figure out what you’re good at an what you’re passionate about, and use that to decide on your niche. For example, if you love outdoor photography, maybe outdoor recreation and fitness would be a good niche.

Beauty, fashion, and health are also popular niches that work well on Instagram. However, you can also choose something less popular. Just make sure you’ll be able to gather enough followers who are interested in that niche.

For example, a niche that’s too narrow won’t have enough people to influence. But if it’s too broad, you’ll have a hard time staying competitive. “Healthy eating” is too broad, but “healthy keto eating” might be just right as a niche.

3. Become a Business

Now, it’s time to show that you’re serious about turning your Instagram into a business.

You’ll need to draft a compelling bio that shows followers what you’re all about at a glance. You should also create an Instagram business account. This gives you access to insights about your followers that will help you grow your base even more.

This also means settling on an Instagram theme and sticking to it. You’re a brand now, and posting whatever random images appeal to you at the moment won’t cut it anymore. Your images need to form a cohesive, appealing whole. 

4. Build Followers and Trust

If you build it, they will come, or so the saying goes. You’ve built a branded Instagram, and now it’s time to attract the followers you need — and help them see you as an influencer.

Regular posting with strategic niche hashtags is one of the best ways to get followers. And to build their trust, share your story, and helpful things you’ve found along the way. 

For example, if your niche is travel, use a few posts to share the backstory of how you got started, or how you overcame challenges. Followers don’t like to feel like you’re always selling to them. Instead, be open and helpful in your content. 

Lead generation concept with magnet. Vector illustration.

5. Connect with Brands

Once you have a healthy number of followers who trust you, it’s time to get brands on board.

Tag your favorite brands in posts, or reach out to them directly to ask about becoming an influencer. If you have enough followers and have a beautiful, professional-looking feed, it won’t be hard to get their attention. 

Then, all that’s left to do is make money!

Is Being an Instagram Influencer Right for You?

The Instagram influencer life isn’t for everyone. It takes time to learn how to make a great Instagram, and to connect with both brands and followers.

You’ll need to consistently post things that will keep your followers engaged. Otherwise, you’ll lose their attention fast. 

This job is best for people who love taking photos and regularly sharing on social media. If that sounds like you, what are you waiting for? Try these steps to get started today!

And if you find yourself struggling to get followers along the way, don’t give up — this post will help.

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