How to Make Money: Social Media Influencer
To be honest, being paid as a social media influencer isn’t something I seek out. I’ve done it once, and only because it fell into my lap. I developed a good working relationship with a sex toy company who recommended me to an ecommerce company who was promoting a sex toy I’d reviewed. Confused yet?
They needed someone with a known affinity for the product to post a few things on social media. I got asked, and they liked my price enough to pay it.
In the ongoing series of “How to Make Money” let’s talk about getting paid as a social media influencer.
It’s Not Easy Money
Don’t let the Kardashians or anyone with a cute dog on Instagram fool you. Being a paid social media influencer isn’t an easy option for most people. Adult marketers aren’t necessarily throwing money around for social media posts. Hell, some of them are barely willing to pay for blog content or other services. If it’s something you’d like to make happen, there are a few things to keep in mind…
Build Your Social Media Audience
This is one of those times when playing around on Twitter or Instagram might actually pay off. Most brands will look at both your numbers and your engagement, and they’ll ask themselves a few questions. How many people follow you? Do your followers retweet you? Do they talk to you online? Can you influence your followers to take action? With high enough engagement, your numbers matter a little less. That being said, the number of people who follow you will determine the price you can charge and expect to get paid.
Partner With Brands that Make Sense
The most effective social media feels real to people. While many of us post our affiliate links on social media, encouraging people to shop and support us, this is different. You’re trying to convince people that a brand or product is so great that they really need to go check it out. If you can get paid to do this by a company you already love or support, you’re speaking from a more authentic place. When the brand is new to you, find a detail or something about the campaign that speaks to you and your audience. Don’t be fake. When you are, your followers know.
Disclose, Disclose, Disclose
The FTC recently began cracking down more and more on social media influencers. Why? Because influencers (many of them highly-paid celebrities) get paid lots of money and their followers have no idea they’re being marketed to. It’s not fair to your followers if they think you really love this product when you’re only posting about it because you got paid. Disclose your relationship in a clear and obvious way early in the post.
Offer Your Services
Okay, it all sounds good, but do how you get hired as a social media influencer? You’ll likely have to make it happen instead of waiting for anyone to ask. Add it to your list of services on your website so it’s available as an option when companies check out your website. Reach out to brands you love and ask if they have a social media influencer budget.
When you reach out to other companies, you’re pitching yourself to them. Tell them clearly what you bring to the table and what they’ll receive in return. Share your numbers. Twitter offers great analytics to see what your top tweets are and how many impressions your tweets get. This information will help these brands see that you have reach and, dare I say it?, influence.
Don’t Forget Your Audience
In reality and in practice, your social media feed shouldn’t become a sea of advertisements for sexy (or not-so-sexy) brands. You still need to be a real person who interacts with other real people on social media. If you start spamming everyone, you’ll lose your influence fairly quickly. Once they’re gone, you lose your marketability as a social media influencer.
Be extremely strategic about how many brands you’ll post for and how often you post to social media on their behalf. It can be tempting to offer dozens of posts to entice a company to pay you, but you’re not doing yourself or your audience any favors when you do.
Personally, I wouldn’t pin all my hopes on becoming a paid social media influencer. If you can make it work, great! But this should be just one more stream of income for you .
Have you ever been approached by a company who wanted you to be a social media influencer? How did that go? Did you do it or did you decline for any reason? Share in the comments below!