Instagram is a powerful tool. Compared to other social media platforms, it is the most lucrative option for brands to promote their products and services by reaching out to common people (i.e. influencers). It is also a great platform for influencers to connect with big brands and help with their influencer marketing campaigns.
Bloglovin talked to 2,500 micro-influencers and found that Instagram is their most preferred platform. 59% of them say that it’s the most effective platform to engage their target audience.
So, if you’re looking to connect with brands and earn free products, this guide is for you! But, make sure to be original and carefully select and deal with the brands you want to work with.
So, let’s dive in!
1. Find a niche
The first step to becoming a successful Instagram influencer and receive free products from brands is to know your niche.
There are many niches that can increase your reach and produce a lot of revenue every year such as animal, lifestyle, books, parenting, technology, etc. Before choosing a niche, it is important to ask yourself these 2 important questions –
- Are you genuinely passionate about it?
- Do you have enough knowledge and expertise in it?
Choosing a niche depends upon your interest and expertise in a particular field. For example, you see your favorite lifestyle influencer making a lot of money on Instagram and you think of doing the same. But, if you don’t have the required knowledge and interest in it, you can never become a successful influencer in that niche.
2. Optimize your Instagram bio
Writing your Instagram bio can be a very daunting task. With millions of Instagram users online, brands take a fraction of seconds to glance through profiles and form an impression.
Here are a few elements you must include in your bio to make a good first impression.
- Put out exactly who you are and what it is that you do
- Use keywords that cater to your audience pool in order to capture their mindshare
- Mention your website/blog link and use bio to direct your followers to your shoppable Instagram feed
- Let nuances of your personality and brand image reflect through emojis and fonts in your bio
- Give your followers a way to get in touch with you.
Image source: Instagram
3. Post regularly
To grow your Instagram following and get more sponsored projects, it is critical to post at least once or twice daily. The more frequently you’ll post, the more likes and engagement you’ll receive. So, it is very important to make the right strategy to increase following and reach bigger brands. Also, make sure that you stick to it.
4. Create beautiful images
Your page is sure to steal the show if there are beautiful images, tagged properly and added with the right caption to pull your followers to your account. You can save yourself from the hassle of writing imaginary and alluring lines to attract your users.
Do not add irksome and familiar images that are omnipresent online, these blend you in the crowd. After all, your motto is to be noticed in the crowd, so be different from the rest. Learn and invest time in understanding what makes a notable image excellent. Avoid using irrelevant pictures that do not reflect your personality or niche.
Image source: Instagram
5. Use relevant hashtags
A hashtag is a powerful tool that makes it easier for people to find your content on Instagram. If you use the right hashtag on your Instagram posts, you’ll definitely observe an increase in your following base and engagement. Thus, they are also very important for your online presence.
When you hashtag a post, you actually create a link which when clicked, takes the users to the particular photos, videos or posts uploaded with that hashtags. You may get creative and use your own hashtags. However, in case you fail to make your own hashtags, you can easily find dependable hashtags for your post online in huge numbers to captivate the attention of the users.
6. Engage! Engage! Engage!
Instagram is all about meeting new people and interacting with them. There are many people who invest their smallest amounts of time and energy into viewing and following your Instagram profile. And thus, it is important that you value them and their time and interact with them.
But, interacting with your followers should not be considered as a task. Rather, you should take out some time from your busy schedule to specifically engage with your followers. This not only improves your image but also helps in retaining the interest of your followers into your profile.
Here are some ways through which you can effectively communicate and engage with them on Instagram –
- Use Instagram Live video chat feature.
- Host giveaways and contests.
- Use polls and Q&A sessions.
- Follow, like and comment on other’s photos.
- Post at the right time, when you’re likely to get maximum engagement.
- Use call-to-action in your captions.
7. Approach brands directly
Getting free products and sponsorships on Instagram can be a bit of a challenge. Once you’re ready with your content, it’s time to connect with your followers and brands through your posts. After all, social media is to get social. Here are a few tips you can follow to connect with brands directly:
- Make a list of all relevant brands that you want to work for. Look for brands that invest much time and money building their online presence.
- Tag them on your posts and also engage with their posts regularly.
- Message them directly or send them an email offering your services in exchange for free products.
Before reaching out to a brand, it is important to know your worth. You must know how much you’re going to charge. For example, the industry standard is $10 for 1000 followers. But, it could vary depending upon your experience and likes and comments your posts get.
Ultimately, getting sponsored posts isn’t an easy task – it requires a lot of time and effort. But, these simple steps can help you boost your engagement and reach bigger brands in no time. Moreover, keep updating your profile and try new posts to analyze what your audience likes most to see on your page.