How to Become a Social Media Influencer (11 Steps Guide)

The rise of social media has birthed a new profession: The Influencer. Global influencer marketing market size has tripled since 2019, reaching $24 Billion.

Like many of you, I was once curious and deeply immersed in the influencer lifestyle and how these people have the power to sway a buyer’s decision. Since then, I have begun researching and studying influencers across various niches on different social media platforms. And now, I am ready to pass on some actionable tips to help you become an influencer!

In addition, I will explore different types of influencers, differentiate them from content creators, and give you some tips to enhance your portfolio! 

With that, let’s begin!

How To Become An Influencer In 11 Steps

To become an influencer, there are certain things you must take into account. I have included a list of all the specifics below. 

1. Find Your Niche

Your niche is the extreme focus and forms the basis of being an influencer. Determine it with the PIP strategy: Passion, interest, and problems. 

First, figure out your passion. Is it entertainment, fashion, travel, or anything else?

For example, you might be passionate about traveling. It’s a broad category. You can start by focusing on highlighting interesting parts of your hometown. 

Remember, thousands of people can write about your hometown. Thus, it’s important to provide unique information that is also relevant and reliable.

2. Choose A Platform

Selecting the best platform for your marketing initiatives is challenging due to the crowded social media space. Regarding platforms, Instagram offers influencer marketers the best return on investment. Ask yourself the following three questions to understand which social media platform is ideal for you:-

Source: Freepik
  1. Who is your target audience?
  2. Which age group do they belong to?
  3. Which platforms have the key influencers in your niche chosen?

Choose your platform(s) now based on the responses.  For example, if you’re a fashion influencer, you already know that the field is visual.

Facebook may not be the best option if your target audience is under 25.  You could use a combination of social media platforms such as Pinterest and YouTube.

3. Understand Your Audience

Researching your audience is essential to becoming a successful influencer.

Analyze your current followers, their interests, and the competitors they follow. Study the brand they trust and the reasons behind their brand affinity.  

Take young billionaire Kylie Jenner’s case as an example. Kylie Cosmetics isn’t unknown to anyone. Her target audience is Gen Z and Millennial women. 

Kylie and her team are particular about choosing influencers who know how to use their following to promote her products. Today, in the US,  brand awareness of Kylie Cosmetics is at 61% for cosmetics and make-up users. 

4. Create High-Quality Content

Generate high-quality content. Anything less than original and relatable content is unacceptable.

RJ Karishma achieved her popularity following the same strategy. Karishma has the persona and content that lures users to her eye-catching images and videos. She uses mimicking skills to establish a connection with her Instagram followers and her radio listeners. 

5. Optimize Your Social Media Handles

Effective optimization techniques can help you grow your audience, get more leads, and grow your following. 

Start by crafting a captivating bio with relevant keywords and a high-quality profile photo. Make sure your brand message is consistent throughout all the platforms. 

6. Build The Following

Building a following is the next step after achieving recognition as an influencer. Keep in mind that expanding your following requires time and work. 

keep track of your comment section and interact with them. This not only helps you understand what type of content your audience is craving but also makes them feel important. That further helps in building a genuine connection with them. Additionally, adding correct hashtags enhances your page discovery.

7. Have A Consistent Posting Schedule

Stick to a regular posting schedule since social media algorithms favor consistent posters.

Set up a publishing schedule to ensure that your followers are aware of your presence on a specific day and at a specific hour. Keep in mind your posting schedule depends on the audience, niche, and platform. 

8. Keep Your Content SEO-Friendly

Optimizing content for search engines is essential to attract readers and viewers. 

Use tools such as Google’s keyword planner or Semrush and ensure your images or writings are top-notch. Remember that search engines like Google give preference to content that is optimized for mobile devices. So, make sure your content is mobile-friendly.   

9. Collaborate With Brands

Being an influencer means having a strong networking presence. You must announce your readiness to work with brands when you’re ready. Use your content to give direct tags and mentions to brands you wish to work with. Additionally, you can approach clients via cold pitches or write about it in your bio. 

Collaboration is a strategic partnership between you and the brands in your niche. Networking with brands will help you establish yourself as an authority in your niche.

Influencers And Their Brand Collaborations:

source: Instagram
  1. Olivia Palermo (@oliviapalermo) is an American fashion influencer with over 8 million followers on Instagram. Olivia’s collaboration with Scalpers company (@scalperscompany), a Spanish fashion brand, has gained over 4k likes and 100+ comments.  
source: Instagram
  1. Adam Gallagher (@iamgalla), is an American lifestyle and fashion influencer with over 1 million Instagram followers. His paid partnership with Explora Journeys (@explorajourneys) has received over 5k likes and 50+ comments. 

10. Stay Authentic

The significance of staying authentic for influencers cannot be overstated. You have a voice, so use it to spread positivity. Thousands of people follow you, look up to you, and mimic what you eat, dress, and do. 

This also holds for the brands you endorse. As an influencer in health and wellness, let’s say you receive a chance to work with a hair care company. You know that the hair conditioner from that brand is not suitable for your hair.  

Do you choose to cancel the offer for your loyal followers or promote it for financial gain? Your answer determines whether you’re authentic. 

11. Stay Consistent And Patient

Today, the market is brimming with influencers, but does everyone get successful? No. But will you let this fact deter you? Absolutely no. 

Patience and consistency are important if you want to be an influencer. You may not see reach, followers, or interactions in the beginning or days, months, and a year later. 

Be consistent with what you’re doing. Experiment, see what your audience loves, and be patient. Your target audience and success will find you. 

What Is An Influencer: Different Types

Not too long ago, almost everyone regarded celebrities as influencers. This may still be true, but today, the term influencer does not give you celebrity status. Having stated that not all influencers are celebrities, and vice versa.

If you’re an influencer, you have the power to

  1. Influence the purchasing decisions of your target audience.
  2. Provide useful content for your niche on social media.
  3. Possess a devoted and sizable social media following.
  4. Have a strong networking game. 

There are different types of influencers: macro, micro, and nano influencers.

  • Macro influencers (100k to 1 Million)

Jennifer Messina (@jennifermessina) is a well-known macro-influencer and mental health advocate. With over 866k Instagram followers, she uses her platform as a musician to raise awareness of mental health issues.

  • Micro-influencers (10K to 100K)

Famous micro-influencer Shikha Raika (@shikha_raika) has more than 21,000 Instagram followers. She focuses on fashion, lifestyle, and beauty-related content. 

  • Nano influencers (1K to 10K)

Nisha Khulbe (@nishakhulbe), with 5351 followers on Instagram, is a nano influencer and travel enthusiast.

Content Creator vs Influencer

Check out the key differences between influencers and content creators.

1. Ability to Influence Others

A content creator’s brand is about creating content on topics that interest them and entertain their audience. Influencers build their personal brand specifically to inspire. 

2. Follower count

Content creators aren’t focused on their followers because that’s not a primary need for being a creator. Influencers are focused on community-building because people trust their recommendations. 

3. Money 

Content creators can make money by creating humorous and relatable content and posting content on their accounts, such as blogs, images, or videos. It might also be requested from their clients or sponsorships from brands.

Influencers work as brand representatives. They receive compensation from brands for promoting their goods and services. Additionally, they are essential figures for brands and for large and small companies. You can also learn more about how influencers make money with our detailed guide. 

Which one do you prefer more? A fashion brand recommended by a top beauty influencer like Olivia Palermo or some no-name beauty brand on Instagram? You’ll choose the former. It’s a no-brainer, right? That’s the power of influence. 

As an influencer, your online reputation exceeds you. The basis of an effective influencer is authenticity and reliability.

How Many Followers Do You Need To Be An Influencer?

Experts and the internet have drawn lines between mega, macro, micro, and nano influencers, but followers are only numbers. Even if you have 100 followers, you can influence every single one of them.

Yes, you are an influencer if you know your game and have the power to influence, add credibility, and increase sales for the brands you work with. 

Conclusion: Follow 11 Steps To Become An Influencer

Becoming an influencer demands hard work and a deep understanding of your audience and niche. If you want to tap into this lucrative career, avoid trivial mistakes. 

Many beginners get fixated on follower count or copying other influencers, which can hinder success. This career offers a reliable source of income if you’re honest with your efforts. So, what are you waiting for? Start your first step to go closer to your goal. 


How to become an Influencer on Instagram?

Choose an area of expertise, register for a business account, and post often. Put your editing and photography talents to use and collaborate with brands to establish your online reputation. 

How to become an Influencer on TikTok?

Decide what your area of expertise is and use the right hashtags for your content. It’s also important to build your brand and attract sponsors.

How to become an Influencer overnight?

While many things seem simple, they need a great deal of effort and research. I can assure you that if you put the proper strategy in place, you will be able to come closer to your objectives. 

How to apply to be an Influencer?

The criteria used by various social media networks to classify you as an influencer vary. Still, most often, all you need to do is establish a strong online presence and personal brand that will draw both brands and your target audience. 

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