So, you’re asking how to monetize your social media accounts, and understand that the path to being an influencer is getting harder by the minute. The good news is that there are increasingly more ways to turn your following into a new revenue stream that don’t rely on sponsored posts, brand partnerships, or sketchy middlemen.
All it takes is for you to be willing to think a bit more creatively and embrace a few new trends that are emerging right now. Whether you are seeking to monetize Instagram followers, monetize Twitter followers, or monetize Pinterest followers, these trends offer creators one simple idea that unlocks a whole new world of possible ways to monetize social media.
Should You Monetize Your Social Media Accounts Directly?
Before we touch on how to monetize your social media accounts, let’s talk about what kind of social media followings are good candidates for social monetization.
It comes down to this: if you can offer your most engaged and motivated followers the opportunity to master a topic together and to achieve results around that topic together, you can monetize your social media.
What does mastering a topic together look like? Here’s an example:
Imagine your Instagram account follows your adventures in homesteading, or living off the land growing your own food, raising your own livestock, and making your own clothes (remember, I said “imagine” here!).
You could monetize your Pinterest followers by creating a paid annual membership site where community members join and learn about sustainable living through collaborating both with you and with each other.
Or you could opt to monetize your Instagram followers by offering an exclusive online course, focusing on the best ways to grow a flourishing edible garden.
Or follow Kathleen Drennan’s example. Kathleen, a florist with her own shop in remote Australia, monetizes her Instagram followers with #ForFlorists, an online business school for florists. Here she hosts both a membership community with a monthly subscription, and a paid online business course for aspiring professional florists, where members can master the business of floral design, together.
If you’re trying to decide whether you too can monetize your social media following, ask yourself these two simple questions.
#1 Who are my most passionate followers?
Monetizing your social media followers isn’t about all of your social media followers. It’s about identifying and connecting the ones that are the most motivated today to go deeper with you and your niche.
Who are your followers who would want a deeper program you create beyond what you offer in social media for free? Furthermore, who are your followers who are most likely to want to meet each other?
Start by looking to monetize these social media followers first. They will be the easiest to reach initially and benefit the most from a paid membership or online course.
#2 What kind of results and transformation could I offer my most passionate followers with a program, online course, or annual membership?
What do your most passionate followers want to create in their own lives and how could you help them get there faster with better structure and a supportive community? For example, could you help your followers grow in their career? Get an inside track on the best beauty practices? Train for a 5K run?
Once you’ve sorted out what your most passionate followers have in common, and what kind of results they are the most motivated to get today, you can take the next step towards social monetization.
Your First Option: Monetize Your Social Media with a Membership
The first way to monetize your social media followers is by creating a paid membership.
Memberships allow you to deliver exclusive benefits, including live events, community networking, and exclusive content. These features will get them the results and transformation they can’t get from following free social media accounts on their own.
Monetizing your social media accounts with a membership program also helps you expand your following. Think of it like this: social media limits you to building an audience, a group of people who can only make one-way, one-dimensional connections. But with a membership, you can create a community where members can make connections with each other. As more of your community reaches out and recruits more members, these connections between members grow faster, create more value, and ultimately surpass your content as the most important benefit of membership.
With a membership model, it’s not about what you’re creating for your members, it’s what they are able to achieve–building new practices and habits, striking new relationships, and realizing results and transformation that they can’t get on their own.
When you bring people together there’s always something new for them to learn from each other, which is what keeps them coming back.
Your Second Option: Monetize Your Social Media with an Online Course
You can also monetize your social media following with an online course.
Remember when we talked about using paid memberships as a way to master something interesting together? Online courses are a more concrete way to make this happen for your most passionate social media followers.
Creating an online course around a career path, health and wellness practices, or other important interests, are an easy way to launch a new revenue stream when you are looking to monetize your social media followers.
If you’re not sure where to start with your online course, you can structure your program with the One Concept Week. Here’s how it works:
- Introduce a concept at the beginning of the week.
- Offer a case study that supports that concept.
- Define an action for people to take.
- By the end of the week, your members will be able to achieve a result.
That’s it. There’s no need to build out a bunch of content in advance. All you have to do is outline a concept, case study, action, and result each week for four to six weeks. That’s your online course.
When you follow the concept of the One Concept Week, and your weekly concepts build on each other, you have a solid framework for an online course for your followers. It’s that easy.
Your Third Option: Monetize Your Social Media by Combining an Online Course and Community Membership
When it comes to monetizing your social media accounts, you don’t have to choose between hosting a paid membership site and creating exclusive online courses.
The best way to mobilize and monetize your social media followers is to do both.
That means creating a membership that’s valuable enough to charge for and combining that with an online course to help your most passionate members master something interesting or important to them.
This combination creates a framework that allows your members to build relationships with each other and help each other stay true to the new habits they’re developing. These connections they make around the topics that are most important to them are what gives them the incentive to come back, and renew their subscription year after year.
Once you make the decision to monetize your social media account with a combination of community and courses, the next step is to find a platform that lets you seamlessly offer both.
There are a lot of website builders and membership site platforms that do a little bit of community, or a little bit of online courses. But there’s only one that lets you deliver a course and dedicated course community together: Mighty Networks.
With a Mighty Network, you’ll be able to offer all of these pieces together under your own brand, instantly available on web, iOS and Android. Plus, it’s easy to charge for different membership tiers, access to exclusive online courses, or both.
Within your own Mighty Network, you can charge for access to your overall community; make access to your Mighty Network free and charge only for an online course or group within your Mighty Network; create bundles of online courses or groups that you can sell annually, monthly or with a one-time payment; and more.
It’s a powerful model that makes it easy for you to manage (especially if you are running your first membership site or online course) and for your members to master your topic in one place.
The Best Way to Monetize Your Social Media Followers? A Mighty Network
Here’s the thing about monetizing your social media: people will pay a premium price for results and transformation. And when you’re ready to monetize your social media followers, a Mighty Network will help you get there.
This is your chance to not only monetize your social media, but to offer a valuable experience with rewarding results that your followers wouldn’t be able to get on their own.