A Guide to Using Instagram to Make Money

We all know Instagram as the social media app where people post pictures of their food, their outfits, and just general photos of their life. Instagram has created this platform that allows people to connect, even more by only posting pictures and videos. This is a way for celebrities and fans to engage on a more personal level and allows friends to get a look at what is going on in other people’s lives. What people do not know is that some of those people are getting paid to post those photos and now you can too! Here is a basic guide to turning your Instagram around and make money from it!

Building a Fan Base

If you want to be able to make money on Instagram, you have to build a fan base. The more followers you have the more attention your profile gets. Building a fan base can be hard but some ways to jump start that is to have multiple social media platforms such as having a YouTube channel, a Twitter, or a Facebook, etc. Having more than one social media platform expands the opportunity that people have to see your page. Being relatable to viewers is a way people gain more followers. There are people that like the same things that you do and will want to connect to you and will follow you. The more followers, or “fans”, that you have will give your profile more attention.


For example, Aspyn Ovard started on Youtube with a beauty channel that has almost 3 million subscribers and now has an Instagram with 1.8 million followers. She started off as a beauty channel on YouTube, now has a second channel for Vlogs, and eventually got an Instagram as well. She built up her fan following and she now does sponsored videos and pictures for brands because of her large following. Click her picture and explore more of her channel!

Getting the Brands Attention

With the right amount of followers, you can begin to get different brands attention, especially the ones that you would like to work with. Getting the brands attention starts with pictures and ends with the caption. Writing a caption that involves hashtags and content that will attract the brand to your profile is the best way to gain attention. Using hastags and captions to get the brands attention is all about being creative and coming up with the best way to show the brands that you love them. When the brands see that you have a large following, they will reach out to and see if you will do sponsored photos for them.


These two photos show how a photo and a caption can captivate a viewer and represent a brand. The one on the top is a creative picture, the brand is clearly shown, and has a caption expressing why they love the brand. The photo on the bottom does not grab the attention of viewers because it is not appealing to the eye and it will not grab the attention of the brand. The user on the top is more likely to get Nike’s attention and sponsorship over the the user on the bottom.


Now that you have the brands attention and they want to you to work for them, you get your “job” which is posting pictures. Sometimes the brand will send you the caption that they want you to use and to post at a specific time, but others will allow you to create a caption so that it looks more authentic to your followers. Most of these captions will include a hashtag of the brand with an explanation on why followers should like this brand as much as you do. Posting this picture will result in money. You are basically a marketer for this brand.

Chloe Lukasiak, a reality tv star, posted a picture for the brand Fruitocracy and fans can tell it was sponsored because of the hashtag in the caption.


Instagram is beginning to be a social media platform that allows brands to market to other users by using their fan base. Brands are branching out to social media stars, specifically Instagram, because of how large the following on social media is. To learn more on how to use Instagram to make money or to hear about people’s story on how they made money, here are some resources to check out:




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