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How To Make Money on Instagram Without or Less Followers

Do you want to make money on Instagram without followers? We share proven methods for monetizing your Instagram account today.
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How to Make Money on Instagram Without Followers
Table of Contents

Key Takeaways

Making money without followers is possible if you use hashtags or connect with influencers.

Focusing on a specific niche, posting regularly and having a plan can help you monetize your Instagram account.

Followers will make it easier to make money and shouldn’t be ignored in the long term.

Influencers aren’t the only ones cashing in on Instagram. Ordinary people with few followers are making money on the platform and monetizing their profiles in exciting, profitable ways.

We’re going to show you how to make money on Instagram without followers – at least compared to an influencer.

You can even make money before getting your first follower.

How To Make Money on Instagram Without Followers

Followers are certainly a bonus when trying to make money on Instagram, but if you follow the tips in the last section of this article, you can turn these strategies into a side hustle or business.

1. Try Dropshipping

Dropshipping confuses a lot of people, so before we go into this tactic, let’s clarify a few things.

  • Dropshipping requires you and a dropshipper
  • Customers order from you
  • You purchase the product from a dropshipper
  • The dropshipper handles the shipping and customer service
If you start dropshipping, you’re the middleman that connects buyers and suppliers together. There are plenty of news articles about this method of making money online (read one here), and a lot are sensational.

However, if you do your due diligence and make sure that you upcharge enough to maintain a healthy profit margin, you can make decent money dropshipping.

You’ll need to:

  • Find a supplier
  • Use their pictures (or take your own)
  • Begin posting these products on your Instagram
Hashtags can work wonders for new accounts that don’t have followers and want to make some money on Instagram. You can also pay influencers to promote this product for your account to make money.

The hardest part is finding suppliers. You’ll need to do your own due diligence, but a few good starting points are:

2. Sell Your Own Products

Do you do any of the following:

  • Make crafts?
  • Make products?
You can engage with other Instagram users, comment on relevant accounts and post your products on your account. A lot of artists have turned their Instagram accounts into a profitable business by posting their art and selling it.

If you have an Etsy store, you can also promote it on your Instagram.

Users love following a person’s or brand’s journey, and you can show the world how you make the product to drum up interest. For example, if you are a painter, you can have:

  • Posts showing the steps you took from blank canvas to finished painting
  • Reels of the drawing process – sped up, of course

3. Try Affiliate Marketing

Want to make money without the hassle of dropshipping or selling your own products? You’re the perfect candidate for affiliate marketing. As an affiliate, you’ll:

  • Promote someone else’s product or service
  • Receive a commission for an action taken
Chances are, you’ve seen a lot of people on social media promoting diet supplements and “lose weight teas.” These individuals make money through affiliate marketing because they receive a percentage of the sale or a flat rate for the sale.

You’ll want to show the world the product, create videos of you using it or demonstrate it on your profile.

The hardest part will be finding an affiliate program to partner with because you don’t have a following just yet. A few good places to start are:

Note: Be sure to read through the program’s terms of service to advertise within their guidelines instead of risk not being paid for violating acceptable promotion terms.

4. Sell Digital Products

Do you have expertise in a certain area? If so, you can create eBooks, courses and other digital products and sell them on Instagram. 

Instagram is a great platform for promoting virtual products like these because it’s a visual social network. You can use Insta to:

  • Share testimonials
  • Offer previews of the product
  • Promote your products
  • Link to your website or online store
If you’re going to create and sell digital products, make sure that you have a way for users to make purchases.

Third-party platforms can help you connect Instagram to your business.

The great thing about digital products is that you make them once, and you can continue selling them without further time investment. Just focus on the promotion, and you can start earning money on Instagram no matter how small your following.

5. Sell Services

Another effective way to make money on Instagram without followers is to sell services. Do you have a valuable skill that you can offer?

Many people on Instagram are offering services for:

  • Graphic design
  • Copywriting or blog writing
  • Social media management
  • Consulting
You can promote your services on Instagram through your content and even via Instagram ads. You can share your portfolio and examples of your work on your account. If your posts have the right hashtags, you can get your content in front of the right people. They’ll visit your account and – hopefully – inquire about your services. 

6. Become a Micro-Influencer

When you do begin to build up a following, you can become a micro-influencer. You may be surprised to learn that you’re a “micro-influencer” if you have 10,000 – 100,000 followers. At this level of followers, you can make $100 – $500 per post, depending on the niche you cater to and follower engagement.

However, if you have an engaged follower base, you can capitalize on the methods above and likely make more money from your following. If you take the time to create a product or sell a service, 10,000 followers may be enough to make a part-time or full-time income.

Tips For Making Money on Instagram Without Followers

Any one of the methods above can help you start earning money on Instagram without followers. But you still need to use the right strategy to find success. 

Here are some tips to help you start monetizing your Instagram account even without a big following.

1. Find Your Niche

One of the best things you can do for your Instagram account is find your niche. Don’t try to appeal to everyone. Create a persona for your Instagram. 

How do you find your niche? Answer these two questions:

  • Who do you want to be?
  • How do you want to be perceived?
Find a style, aesthetic and voice that fits your brand. This one simple strategy will help you appeal to the right people who discover your Instagram account – even if you don’t have any followers.

2. Use Hashtags

Hashtags will help users discover your content. Using the right hashtags can help you make more money on Instagram, even if you don’t have a big following.

Let’s say that you want to promote and sell handmade ceramic mugs through Instagram. Adding hashtags like #ceramicmugs and #handmadeceramics to your posts will help people find your content and possibly make a purchase. People who find your account through these hashtags are already looking for what you’re offering, so they’re more likely to make a purchase or follow your account.

Take the time to research popular and relevant hashtags. Start incorporating them into your posts to get your content in front of the right people.

3. Collaborate with Others

You may not have a big following, but that doesn’t mean that you don’t have something valuable to offer. Connect with others in your niche or industry and start collaborating.

Collaborations can help expand your reach, helping you earn more money and grow your following at the same time.

For the best results, try networking with other accounts that have similar audiences.

4. Post Stories Frequently

It’s important to make regular posts on Instagram, but don’t neglect your stories. Every day, 70% of Instagram users watch stories, so posting regularly will help get your account and content in front of more people.

Use your stories to take people behind the scenes of your brand or life. Share exclusive promotions. Stories are short-lived, so offering promotions is a great way to create a sense of urgency that will compel people to make purchases.

5. Post Regularly

If you want to make money on Instagram without a big following, you must be consistent and post regularly. Taking this approach will not only help you grow your followers organically, but it will also help more users discover your content.

Engage with people who interact with your posts.

With persistence and patience, you will earn money on Instagram even without a large following.

Final Word

If you’re just getting started on Instagram and don’t have a large following yet, you can still make money. But you must be persistent, consistent and use the right strategy. Whether you’re doing affiliate marketing or selling your own products, you need to take the right approach to see results. Posting regularly, creating an image for your personal brand, using the right hashtags and collaborating with others can help you start earning money more quickly. 

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