12 Ways to Make Profit Using Instagram

5 min read
19 July 2021

1. Direct and indirect monetization

Indirect monetization is when an Instagram account with regular content, engaging Stories, and interactive live streams receives an offer to promote a product or a client.

Direct monetization is when you already have a product/project/business you want to promote, so you buy advertising to draw visitors to the landing page or the description page.

Obviously, this only works if you manage your Instagram account appropriately. Simply registering and filling in the details without creating feed content or Stories is not going to work. People won’t flock to it, few users will follow it, and to your product purchases and services will be poor.

2. Setting a higher price

The second way to use Instagram for profit is to push your reputation to greater heights to sell your services for more.

The more prominent your brand is, the broader your fame becomes, the more queries and curiosity you evoke, the higher the price you can aspire for.

Professional recognition makes the number of potential customers grow, and by raising the prices, you can regulate the flow to the desired level.

3. New projects

First, if you want to start a new project, Instagram is a great place to test ideas. Let your audience be your guinea pigs.

Second, if you see that your idea is received with interest, it may become a springboard for crowdfunding.

This sadly underappreciated business model should be viewed as a form of prepayment. The audience sponsors you, claiming a stake in your future products/services, partially or fully buying your work. When you launch a project, you will be providing a paid service. That is the crowdfunding idea with a commercial spin.

4. Selling products already being sold

People buy different products: iPhones, food, exotic trips. It is logical for many Instagram bloggers to engage their followers and encourage them to buy more items that are already popular. For example, start selling bread and get people already buying bread to buy it from you, rerouting the cash flow to your business.

5. Consulting

The simplest way to monetize your account is to offer consulting services. There must be areas you know better than others. If your account is dedicated, if you develop a topic and are really an expert in it, the audience will eventually perceive you as an expert. As a result, you will sell your expertise.

6. Instagram checklists

Another way to monetize your account is by offering checklists. That is an easy-to-make product that can be paid or free of charge.

When free, a checklist can: promote your services, advertise your additional activities, or sell and transmit your impressive know-how.

Moreover, checklists can be sold, too. The average rate for the Russian segment of Instagram is 150-1.000 rubles depending on the topic.

You can start doing checklists targeting any audience, but if you have few followers, it makes more sense to warm your followers first and sell them a higher-priced online product later on. Once you reach popularity, you can start making low-cost products that people will gobble up and benefit from the economies of scale.

7. Paid webcasts and marathons

Let’s step up from checklists and have a look at webinars. Come up with an idea, set a price, and sell it. Do the same with marathons. You have probably seen many Instagrammers running a side business this way.

8. Publish a book

You can also consider publishing and selling your book. If the point is to make a profit, publishing it yourself works better. Self-published books are much easier to produce. However, recognition and distribution can be a challenge. A proper way towards writing a book involves contacting a publishing house with everything that entails. If the point is to monetize your popularity on Instagram, it is much easier to complete the book yourself, in a paper or digital format. Your book can be promoted on Instagram as well.

9. Attracting investments

If you prepare a project and talk about it, show backstage and discuss your challenges and difficulties, you can sometimes welcome investors and make them an offer.

You will need to make a worthy offer in line with the investors’ expectations. Having a promising project and a well-formulated offer, you may get positive feedback.

Many U.S. celebrities use this method, luring investors through their Instagram audience. If your blog is focused on a niche field, you may get collaboration offers and other catchy propositions from companies related to this industry.

10. Advertising

Ads can be placed in posts and Stories; Stories are more popular these days and cost less. If your traffic and public attention allow you to get advertising offers regularly, this is a way to monetize and recoup the costs of garnering traffic.

11. Barter

That is a clever and fun idea if you work out a deal. Barter can be simple: to reach a threshold audience for bonuses. For example, a beauty salon in your city may agree to give you free treatments if you show them in your Stories while having an audience of 5.000 people. A café may feed you for promoting them — another company may send you free samples of their products for leaving a review in the blog. Such barter deals help you save money.

12. Partner commission

A commission may be agreed on for partner product sales or for telling about a partner’s deal in the blog. Let’s say an entrepreneur wants to sell their business. You can announce a partnership to your followers, and if you manage to bring a buyer, you will get a reward in return. In a less complicated case, you can improve your partner’s sales just by talking about their products. There are plenty of stores offering partner commissions, like Amazon and Ozon.