Description: How many followers on Instagram to make money for your coaching business and what are the best methods to do it? Find out here.

Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms globally. It's the fourth most used of the top social networks with 1.4 billion monthly active users. It is one of the best platforms to generate passive income if you have a decent number of followers (and engagement). While brand promotion is the major income source for 40.15% of Instagram influencers it is not the best way to generate revenue. Having followers doesn't guarantee passive income from Instagram. Picking the right monetization method to convert your Instagram followers into passive revenue is the key to success.

You can be a social media influencer with over a million followers, and you might make a monthly income of $1,000 per month on Instagram from sponsored posts of big brands or brand partnerships. Or you can make $10K with a lower follower count by leveraging content ideas for small businesses with subscription business models. As a content creator, it all comes down to the technique you use to generate income and how you optimize it.

Good news! Big brand deals are not the only way to generate revenue from Instagram or a lot of people following you. There are different ways to leverage an Instagram page, live video, original content, and Instagram ads. Let’s get to the nitty-gritty.

How Many Followers You Need to Make Money on Instagram

You can make money on an Instagram account with as low as 1,000 followers. Research shows that 23% of Instagram accounts having 1K-10K make money successfully by monetizing their followers:

What matters is engagement.

Having 100K followers with significantly low engagement won’t help you make a lot of money. If you have 1K highly engaged followers who interact with every post you publish, you can make way more than you think.

So, it gets down to two things:

  1. Number of followers (aka account size)
  2. Engagement Rate (likes, comments, etc.,).

Amber Broder, for example, started making money on Instagram with only 2,300 followers. She partnered with skincare brands and made money when she was a full-time college student.

How did she manage to do it?

Here is an example of one of her Instagram posts with 223 likes and 66 comments with 2,765 followers.

Look at her posts and you will notice high engagement in all of them.

Amber is not the only one who is making money on Instagram with a couple of thousand followers. There are hundreds of them out there.

Account size and engagement aren’t the only factors. Your niche and revenue channels play a significant role in your Instagram earnings.

How Much Money You Can Make from Instagram

The average Instagram influencer having 1K-10K followers makes an average of $901 per post.

Over 1,800 Instagram influencers revealed in a survey that accounts having 1K-10K followers make an average of $1,420 per month

Is this consistent across niches?

Not really. According to HypeAuditor Here is how earnings differentiate across different niches:

Instagram Influencer Potential Earnings by Category

Certain niches like animals and businesses have higher rates than average money-making potential. The revenue streams or monetization method plays a key role in your Instagram income. While brand promotion is the major income source for 40.15% of Instagram influencers it is not the best way to generate revenue. In recent years, a more scalable way is within reach.

So, the factors that define how much money you can make from Instagram depend on the following variables:

  • Number of followers
  • Engagement
  • Specific Niche
  • Revenue model

How to Make Money from Instagram

What method you choose to make money from Instagram is the only decision that matters the most. If you have a decent number of followers with above-average engagement metrics but choose the wrong monetization method, you might end up cursing Instagram.

The right monetization method that ensures sustainable growth should be your priority. The best methods to turn Instagram followers into revenue include:

  1. Subscriptions
  2. Sponsored Post/Affiliate Program
  3. Ads

1. Subscriptions

As a content creator you should always look at your creations as a business because you are creating a digital product and/or people are looking at you as a thought leader. With that in mind, you can leverage the best revenue model to make money from Instagram - Subscriptions!

Offering subscriptions are a great way to create a passive income source that compounds. It's sustainable and has the potential to grow exponentially. Revenue from subscriptions grows much faster than a sponsored post, physical products, affiliate links, or affiliate programs.

Instagram introduced Subscriptions for creators early this year. It lets you charge subscriptions to your followers in exchange for exclusive high-quality content including Instagram reels, stories, chats, and other content for subscribers only. It’s like monetizing content.

The feature is still new and might not be available in your region. The thing is you don’t have to rely exclusively on Instagram Subscriptions. A smart move is to send your loyal followers and potential customers off Instagram to a landing page and enroll them directly in your subscription-based business model.

Passive Income via Subscription Model

Subscription is a business model where customers pay you a subscription fee for using your products or services. It doesn’t involve selling your services for a one-time fee, rather you charge a fixed weekly, monthly, or yearly fee to your subscribers:

This is a perfect revenue model for coaches and solopreneurs. Instead of promoting other people’s products and services to your Instagram followers, you need to sell your own products and services and build your community.

You can sell coaching classes, online courses, one-to-one sessions, or pretty much anything that can be converted to a subscription-based pricing model. You need to use Instagram as the marketing channel to promote your subscription business and generate passive revenue.

Note, we are not advising you to not use Instagram. Instead, think of Instagram as a platform where you build awareness about your service or product. From there direct your followers to a page where you can offer your products or services without Instagram's interference. This is called "owning your audience"

Subkit lets you do it free of cost. You can offer your content products (online courses, newsletters, videos, etc) in subscription plan(s) and start generating compounding and passive revenue. You can also package a physical product and content in a subscription plan. For example, if Amber had her own skincare line, she could offer a skin care newsletter and some products at X dollars per month.

This has major benefits:

  1. You will not rely on Instagram for passive income anymore
  2. You will own your audience
  3. You will be able to engage your followers without Instagram algorithms interference.

It is sustainable as the more followers you gain, the more revenue you generate. And it helps you develop and grow your personal brand. Create exclusive content on Subkit and send your Instagram followers to your Subkit profile to start making passive income.

You can promote your Subkit profile via Instagram bio and posts, and generate recurring income.

2. Sponsorships

One of the most used methods to generate income from Instagram is via sponsorships. Sponsorship refers to a paid post from a brand that wants to connect with your followers. You get paid by the brand for posting content about their products and services. Here is an example

A brand contacts you and will ask you to create content for their brand or product and will pay you directly based on the agreed amount.

The user-generated content you create as an influencer for brands lets you charge any amount you want. There are no restrictions. You can charge $10 for a post, or you can charge $10,000 or more. The good thing is you have control over how much you charge per post.

There are two key issues with sponsorships to make money from Instagram:

  1. Sponsorships aren’t sustainable and don’t provide you with passive income. It is an irregular income stream with a lot of fluctuations
  2. You end up promoting someone else’s products to your followers. It is problematic because you are sending your engaged followers to another company. Think of it in terms of competition. Any brand that has the same target audience as your followers is potentially your competitor.

Drawbacks aside, sponsorship is the leading source of income for the majority of Instagram influencers.

3. Ads

The easiest way to make money from Instagram is by running paid ads. These include affiliate marketing products, brand promotions, and ads to your own landing pages. An ad is a blatant advertisement as opposed to sponsorship where you might not look like promoting a product.

In some cases, the brand creates the post and publishes it via your account. This is a more blatant form of advertisement as the post might not have you in the photo

Alternatively, you can sign up for affiliate products relevant to your followers and promote those to make money. Here is an example of how to promote affiliate products via Instagram to make money:

You can use ads to promote your coaching business and courses. Offer exclusive discounts to your followers to persuade them to buy your course. Here is an example

The earnings from ads aren’t passive.

Even if you sell affiliate products, you will have an inconsistent income. Your followers will purchase a product and you will get a commission. There is no recurring income unless you promote an affiliate product with a recurring commission.

If you work with brands and publish their content, it isn’t sustainable either. You might not receive any order from a brand for weeks. And there is nothing you can do. Yes, you can reach out to relevant brands.

But a better approach is to build your personal brand as discussed above.

Final Words

Instagram is a gigantic social media platform with high views and searches. The single best method to monetize your followers is to leverage those high views to build awareness for a product or service of your own.  From there, direct them to a page where you can establish and own your relationship and offer your services on a subscription basis.  

This creates an ecosystem that not only generates compounded revenue.   It also gives you the ability to, over time, reduce the time you are working to generate revenue.   You can work smarter, not harder.

You must get started right from day one. The earlier the better because revenue compounds over time. Don’t wait to reach a certain number of followers to set up this method. Start early so you can find the best way to turn Instagram followers into revenue by the time you have a few thousand followers.

For example, offer subscription-based coaching sessions off Instagram too via your website.

Instagram, by default, isn’t supposed to make money. It all comes down to how you use it to generate awareness that leads to revenue for your business. It needs trial and error and lots of experimentation. If a single method doesn’t work, move to the next.

Your potential is unlimited.  Work smarter, not harder.