How to Become a Social Media Influencer (and Make Money)

Brandi Glass
December 22, 20225 min read
Smiling person taking selfie

Social media influencers are a relatively new phenomenon in the digital landscape. Before influencers became popular, most brands and people looked to celebrities and athletes for the latest trends. Social media influencers are quickly taking their place and making thousands – and sometimes millions – of dollars marketing their niche and lifestyle to others.

We have it covered if you want to know how to become a social media influencer and make money. We’ll go over the top ways to grow your popularity and highlight your strengths to reach the audience you want. With some effort and planning, you can start a successful business as a social media influencer in no time.

What Is a Social Media Influencer?

Social media influencers use their popularity to influence people to make purchasing decisions. Some make money by having many followers and using views on their platforms to make money. Others actively advertise products that are part of their niche. They can market their products or those of companies for sales commissions.

Influencers are becoming increasingly prevalent as more people use social media platforms. Some of them have millions of followers, while others cater to a specific group of people. Influencers use one or more platforms to make money. Examples of these platforms include Instagram, Tik Tok, and YouTube.

Are All Social Media Influencers the Same?

One of the main ways that social media influencers gain followers and pave a niche for themselves is by setting themselves apart. For example, although there are thousands of successful beauty influencers, they cater to different categories like makeup, hair, and fashion.

Try not to worry if you don’t have a unique niche. You will always bring something new to the table and have a unique method that sets you apart.

Presenting yourself professionally with sincerity and knowledge helps you gain followers even if your chosen niche is experiencing oversaturation.

Professionally, influencers fall under four main categories:

  • Nano-influencers: People with less than 1,000 followers but strong influence in their niche.
  • Micro-influencers: These professionals have between 1,000 – 100,000 followers but still significantly impact the social sphere.
  • Macro-Influencers: People with between 100,000 – 1 million followers with high-impact results on the brands they market.
  • Mega Influencers: These people are well-known in their niche or are celebrities who have over one million followers and a high reach.

Although most people who want to become influencers would love to have over a million followers, the key is to start with realistic expectations. Then, you can grow your audience as you enhance your brand and image.

What Type of Content Do Social Media Influencers Produce?

Social media influencers can produce multiple types of content. The four main ways they can do so are through blogging, making videos, recording podcasts, and using social media platforms to make posts. Depending on your style, you can focus on one area or use multiple mediums to generate content.

For example, suppose you are introverted but have a way with words. In that case, you can blog professionally and make money from your readers. If you like to put yourself out there, you can record videos and podcasts for your followers. You don’t have to go all out in the beginning. Test where you feel comfortable most and expand to reach a broader target audience.

What Are Common Mistakes that Social Media Influencers Make?

One of the most common mistakes social media influencers make is lacking authenticity. If you are advertising a product but don’t use it or don’t believe what you market, it shows. Your followers can pick up on your enthusiasm and sense when the marketing is just for profit.

Another mistake is buying social media followers and fake engagements. Your followers will lose trust in you if they find out that your actual follower count is well below what the “official” numbers are on your account. Other errors include posting irrelevant content, not listening to your followers, not being open to criticism and accepting any brand collaboration.

How Much Money Do Social Media Influencers Generate?

According to Statistica, social media influencers make money depending on their status, their platform, and their followers. Nano-influencers make up to $195 per Instagram post, macro-influencers make up to $1,804 per post, and mid-tier influencers make $1,221 per post.

Another example is YouTube. The more people watch your channel, the higher you can earn. The average YouTuber makes about $5 for every 1,000 views or $0.18 per view.

The most recent contender, Tik Tok, allows social media influencers to earn up to $0.4 per 1,000 views, much less than YouTube.

What Are the Steps to Becoming a Social Media Influencer?

So, now that you know what you may earn and what categories influencers fall under, it’s time to take active steps to make your goal a reality. Some steps you can take to become a social media influencer include:

Choose Your Niche Carefully

Don’t go for something you assume people want to see when choosing a niche. Instead, work within the areas and things you genuinely like to do yourself. This direction decreases the feeling of “having” to work and helps you enjoy and create great content.

Know Your Target Audience

Knowing whom you want to connect with is just as important as choosing a niche. Suppose your area of expertise usually appeals to women in their thirties. In that case, you should focus on targeting them as opposed to teenagers or men. You also must find out what platform your audience uses most and build your presence where they are.

Create Relevant and Engaging Content

Establishing yourself as an authority people can trust takes time and effort. This is the hard part. Content nowadays is a dime a dozen, and you must do your research when creating posts that hold value for your audience. Always double-check your facts and claims because your audience will point them out without hesitation.

Communicate With Followers

And we don’t mean in the generic sense. Engaging with your followers is a great way to make people feel special and test the waters regarding your method and delivery. The more you are present and engage with your followers, the likelier they will stay loyal to you and your brand. Take criticism seriously but don’t let negative comments with no value bring you down.

Alert Brands and Other Influencers About Your Openness to Collabs

Everyone is always looking for the next big thing, and you might be the next one. Once you have a solid social media presence, alert other brands and influencers that you are open to collaborating. Although many will not want to initially, you need a few to launch your brand higher.

Consistency is Key

You won’t always have the time and energy to post every day. However, you can still pre-record videos or take photos with the intent to post them later. Whatever you do, always try to stay consistent. If you post sporadically, the algorithms will keep you on top of feeds. Moreover, your followers will not care about what you have to say when you rarely or sporadically post.

Professional Resume for Social Media Influencers

Nowadays, it may seem like everybody wants to learn how to become a social media influencer and make money through their posts. However, it’s not for everyone and takes time and effort. If you are an influencer, you still need a professional resume if you want to collaborate with major brands or apply for a media-related position. With Rocket Resume, you can customize a personalized social media influencer CV in minutes.

Rocket Resume templates are different because they cater to your specific niche. Moreover, they pass all ATS systems without errors or glitches, making reaching a hiring manager’s hands easier.

Are you ready to create a winning social media influencer resume? Start today with Rocket Resume and get $20 off your first order.