Felix Kjellberg, the Swedish game commentator and video blogger, and the most popular YouTuber of all time, earns $12 million per year.
Brazilian influencer, actor, and comedian, Whindersson Nunes, earns $ 690,708 a year, according to a video on YouTube.
These amazing numbers make you wonder – how exactly are these people monetizing their influence? What do they do? Which platforms do they use?
4 Ways to Monetize Your Influence
Here are 4 ways that you can use to turn your influence into financial profits:
1. Sign Up for Affiliate Programs
When you sign up for affiliate programs, you can mention or showcase products or services in your articles, videos, or social media posts. Then you can include links that will direct your followers to the product pages.
You get paid anytime anyone makes a purchase using one of your affiliate links. Sometimes, you can even get paid just to drive traffic to that product page, depending on the agreement you have with the brand.
There are plenty of affiliate programs that you can sign up for and select products you want to endorse. Amazon Associates is one of the most popular. One of the oldest is Tera Leads. Then there are ClickBank, eBay Partner Network, ShareASale, etc.
All these have different kinds of products, different technologies, and facilities with the same CPA (cost-per-action) logic.
The product selection should be done based on the audience you cater to. In these programs, earning typically depends on how many sales you are driving for a brand.
Here is an example of a successful affiliate site, ThisIsWhyImBroke and a snippet of their lucrative stats:
2. Create Sponsored Content
Imagine your Instagram hobby of posting pictures fetching you money. That doesn’t have to be just a dream. It could be a reality.
You can share sponsored content and make money while doing it.
According to Collectively’s Influencer Marketing Report, 66% of brands pay up to $250 per Instagram post. And 27% pay between $250 and $1000 per post. See for yourself:
If you have at least 5000 followers, and they interact with you regularly or share your posts, you are ready to become an influencer.
Be proactive and approach a brand if they haven’t approached you already. Hang out where they do. Be visible to them.
There are many influencer marketing platforms where you can list yourself as an influencer. Brands discover influencers on these platforms and approach them for partnerships. Or you can apply to participate in a campaign and then the brand will decide whether or not to work with you.
Influence.co, TRIBE, and TapInfluence are some of the most popular influencer networks.
3. Charge for Exclusive Content
Maybe at a later stage of your influencer career, you can create gated content. With gated content, you charge some amount of money access to your exclusive content.
This could be a week-long online course, ebook, live webinar, or other content.
Your exclusive content can even come from a brand you are working with. This type of content is typically a product trial. Of a brand you’re working with may give you first right to publish a research report.
Apart from collecting the access fee, gated content can also increase your credibility as an influencer.
4. Use Display Ads
Yes, ad blockers exist. But so do display ads. Otherwise, PewDiePie and Jenna Marbles wouldn’t keep making so much money.
If you have your own website, blog. or you are a YouTuber, you have the opportunity to cash in on your quality content and considerable number of followers with display ads.
Google AdSense, Adblade, Advertising.com, Chitika, and Clicksor are some of the best display networks available.
With display ads, you don’t have to do much apart from creating good quality content.
YouTube, for example, will let advertisers post ads on your channel if you allow it. AdSense will place ads anywhere in the video and you get paid for that.
The same applies to bloggers. Also, you can use metrics and analytics to help you increase your earnings.
Influencers are here to stay. The future will surely open up new opportunities, so you can cash in on your popularity in more innovative ways. Be prepared.
We have discussed four distinctive ways you can monetize your influence. It’s important to diversify your sources of income to have a sustainable business model and a continuous flow of money. You can add more to the list as you become a pro.
Remember to stay relevant and authentic. Don’t hesitate to approach brands upfront. Maybe they haven’t considered you yet because they don’t know you exist.
Do you have any other ideas for monetizing your influence? Feel free to share them in the comment section below.