8 Ways To Make Money as an Influencer!
Hi again guys! This is my part 2 answer on the initial question a ready was so kind to ask: What is an influencer and how do they make money. If you have read the article where I cover what an influencer is, please click here(unless you don’t want to read it then don’t).
There ar many ways for influencers to make money depending on which social media channels they use. I will try to cover most of them, but if you have anything to add, please add a comment.
This is probably the most common way for influencers to make money across their social media channels. It can be done in many ways, either by incorporating the brand into something (kinda like product placement) or by dedicating 100% of the content to the brand. Here the influencer’s finest job is to be super selective and only say yes to brands that fit into the universe of the influencer. Doing so and incorporating the brand into the univers in a way that doesn’t annoy the audience, is called “Native advertising”.
There’s no rule of thumb to how much a sponsored post/video costs. Some works with a CPM(Cost Per Mille/Thousand) based price. E.g. Cost Per Thousand Follower or Cost Per Thousand Pageview. however, I find this extremely misleading and baldly. The reason for that is that an influencer, no matter the size, delivers a piece of content that even if the influencer had 100 followers would be worth a lot for the brand. Eg. the photo's alone (if done well) would cost 400€ from an advertising agency or professional photographer. So, always charge money unless you really want what the company is offering you for free.
To me it’s the most valuable type of influencer collaboration. Simply because ambassadorships are much more genuine. However, for some reason most companies in Denmark are being hesitant about it. Having ambassadorships enables the brand and the influencer to work closely together for a longer period and thereby creating much better and compelling content together. For the influencer it also means, that you have a stable income for longer time. It varies a lot what ambassadorships cost but based on my previous experience, it is worth the money for all parties.
Affiliate links are links to webshops that enables the influencer to get a commission of the total purchase from the person that clicked the link. Eg. I sometimes use affiliate links to the clothes I wear (or something similar) in my outfit posts here on the blog. If you are like “Hey, that’s a pretty sweet skirt, I will buy it right now through the link she uses”, then I earn a commission which mostly is around 7-15%. It is not the person who clicks the who pay me that money but the shop as a thank you for leading customers into my shop. I know influencers where their users only buy through their affiliate links as a way to support the influencer. That’s a cool mentality and really show how good some influencers are a building a community with their audience.
You mostly find affiliate links on blogs, Youtube and Pinterest.
“Passive income” (eg. prints, Ebooks etc.)
Passive income from Ebooks etc. is something you mostly see in the US. However, it can be very effective and valuable for all parties. Eg. if a blogger is an expert within his/her field, then it would makes sense to write an ebook on the subject and charge a low price for this piece of premium content. Or, if an instagrammer has some amazing photographs then it makes sense to put them online as posters that can be purchased. Calling it a passive income refers to the ability to have it running in the background without it creating noise in a blog post. see these types of monetisation ways in the same way you see newspapers charge for premium content.
Pinning (yes, that’s a thing!)
Also, mostly in the US, you find professional Pinterest Pinners that make a living out of… pinning. To me it is a bit alien, simply because it hasn’t made it in Denmark. I think I’ve heard of 1 in Denmark that makes a living out of pinning. However, I really understand WHY it’s a thing because, of you have spent a couple of hours on Pinterest, you also know that some pictures are just being repinned again and again - some for years! If you get a pro pinner with let’s say 1mio. followers to pin a handful of your dresses it is very likely that some of their followers will repin those dresses which then again will get repined by their followers etc. etc. over time maybe 5 mio. people have seen these dresses. It would surprise me a lot if these dresses didn’t get sold out pretty fast.
Co-creation is a collaboration where the influencer and the brand work on creating "something" together. It can be a design collaboration, a book, A series of videos or something else. This bit is fluffy but done right, a thing that really works well.
Because many influencers have been in business for so long they also know the industry in ways that most businesses don't. This knowledge is super valuable for businesses and therefore something you can charge money for as a consultant. I myself, have consultancy as one of my revenue streams. First of all because I love sharing my knowledge, but also because I have a knowledge about especially Influencer Analytics that most people don't. Influencer analytics, which basically means that you use data (Google Analytics etc.) to form your decision making, is a relatively new thing for many businesses. An example is that they always use the same influencers because they are a name but not necessarily have an audience that fits the brand. Or they simply don't know which types of branded posts that's works best on each platform, or how to get content to live for the longest time possible. Basically it can be al sorts of things, and that's why they hire me.
The last thing I want to mention is events. Simply showing up to one or an event where the influencer host it themself. I Denmark, I rarely hear about influencers that charge for showing up to events. And I am sure you will find a lot of people arguing why they shouldn’t. I don’t know what advice for but one could argue that spending 3 hours at an event is sometimes better spent by the computer, working on creating good content. Because, as fun as it may sound, being an influencer is a job like anything else. Often you are a one-man army trying to manage all the roles you find in a normal business: You have to create content (communication), You have to market yourself so someone reads your content(Marketing), You have to sell sponsored deals (Sales) and you have to keep your finances straight (Finance).
With that in mind my next article in this series will be about what an influencer does during a day. But since I am pretty new in this game, I have interviewed a couple of my favorite full-time influencers in Denmark about this matter! I can't wait to hear what they have to say and I can't wait to share it with you!