The Different Ways Social Media Influencers Can Make Money On Instagram and YouTube

 YouTuber: jaclyn hill

YouTuber: jaclyn hill

So, you have a knack for creating beautiful content and have built an large audience on social media, but now what? 

To your advantage, brands of all kinds have been tapping into the phenomenon of social media influencers and content creators. Instead of dedicating all of their resources on creating in-house content marketing campaigns, they are now relying on influencers to do what they do best, create engaging content that resonates with their fans. Brands of all kinds are paying creators anywhere from $20-15,000+ dollars to post content featuring their products on Instagram YouTube, Vine and many other platforms. Ultimately, influencers fans trust their product suggestions over a branded billboard or commercial, which is why they are getting paid and making a living from their content! 

As the community manager at Revfluence, I have creators coming to me on a daily basis interested in learning more about how they can make money on Instagram and YouTube. Below are the most widely used by brands on our platform! 



This is how a majority of brands work with creators. Brands find creators who are on-brand, send them product and pay them to review it and share their experience with their audience! On Instagram and YouTube, their are a few ways we have noticed brands and influencers collaborating on Revfluence and definitely something to keep in mind when working with brands! 


  • One Post. Agreeing to create one sponsored post is great if you're new to the brand or haven't tested out their products before. If you end up becoming a fan and find that your audience reacted positively, let the brand know! This could open the path for future collaborations. 
  • Multiple posts. To elaborate on the first bullet point, if your already a fan of the brand and/or have worked together previously, collaborate with the brand to come up with a plan for a series of sponsored posts! Not only is this a great way to make extra cash, but it also helps create structure for your Instagram post, stick with a theme and build a lasting relationship with the brand. 


  • Mention Video. Many YouTubers like to collaborate with brands by simply mentioning their product for 1-2 minutes, especially if it's their first time to use and recommend it to their subscribers. This helps to make the review/recommendation appear more natural to viewers and not sound like a sales pitch.
    • Example: Mentioning a face mask in a Get Ready With Me video
  • Dedicated Video. Unlike merely mentioning a product for a few minutes, a dedicated video is exactly as it sounds, dedicating an entire 6-10 minutes talking about about a brand, what their product(s) looks like and how it works. 
    • Example: Summer Fashion Haul from Forever21



If you’re an influencer and aren’t making commission from your posts, then you should! Affiliate/commission structures are as easy as posting a link in your Instagram bio, YouTube description or blog post, then making a cut anytime your follower makes a purchase. 

Furthermore, each brand typically has their own commission structure, each with a number of benefits to help you make money from your content! Below are a few affiliate model examples:

EXAMPLE 1: LikeToKnow.It

Widely used by fashion and lifestyle Instagrammers, LikeToKnow.It is a way for bloggers to share details about the products shown in their post by sharing a link to their followers, that directs them to a shoppable page. In turn, bloggers will then get paid based on either clicks or a percentage of total sales made from their posts. 

EXAMPLE 2: Stitch Fix Influencer Program

Taken directly from the Stitch fix website, not only do they offer commission, but "as an Influencer you will receive perks like event invites, behind-the-scenes looks at Stitch Fix, tips & tricks on how to grow your site, collaboration, cross promotion and giveaway opportunities, and the occasional product goodie too." Below is an overview of their Influencer Program and how many other brands structure their own

Program benefits:

  • $25 for each new client you refer (who orders a “Fix” through your links)
  • 4% commission on gift card sales
  • 7-day referral cookie
  • Choose from a regularly updated selection of creative banners and text links



For small to mid-tier social media influencers, collaborating with a brand by simply accepting free product in exchange for a post, is a great way to start if you want to eventually monetize your content. For example, some brands on Revfluence send creators product worth anywhere from $50-$1,000 in exchange for an Instagram post or shoutout on YouTube.

Although it may not seem worth your time, accepting free product instead of payment can lead to many perks like:

  • The brand sending you free product each season before it hits the market
  • Getting invited to exclusive events/networking opportunities
  • Eventually being paid to post once you've established a relationship and/or have grown your social media channels 


Let us know what you think! What ways have you found the successful for making money on Instagram, YouTube or any platform for that matter? If you're ready to start monetizing your content, apply to be a creator on Revfluence and start reaching out to brands looking for creators to partner with!