Over the years, social media has evolved from an online meeting place to a full-blown economic powerhouse. There are now thousands of businesses and private individuals earning money through their social media accounts. 

If that sounds like something that appeals to you, here are some of the best ways to make money on social media:

  • Create a business profile.
  • Join buying and selling groups.
  • Make sponsored content. 
  • Become an affiliate marketer
  • Run advertisements. 
  • Become an influencer.
  • Sell your own merchandise. 
  • Look for security flaws. 
  • Manage accounts. 
  • Sell accounts. 
  • Try crowdfunding. 
  • License your content to media outlets. 

If you’d like more information for specific social media platforms, try some of our other articles about starting a business on Facebook and Instagram.

Or for more general information about social media and business, check out our article, “Why is social media important for business?

Create a business profile

Most social media platforms have the option to set up a business account, giving you access to special features like data analytics, point of sales, advertising spots, and increased visibility for your content. 

While you can create an account for your business on any social media platform, sites like YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok have specialised business profile options. 

Join buying and selling groups

Facebook marketplace and Instagram Checkout allow you to buy and sell products without ever leaving the platform. 

Selling over social media is an excellent idea for businesses targeting younger customers as it reduces the number of steps between an advertisement and point of purchase. 

Make sponsored content

If you build up enough followers, you make deals with advertisers to sponsor some of your content. If you choose to go down this route, it’s always best to mention up top that the post is sponsored.

Become an affiliate marketer

Affiliate marketers earn money by increasing web traffic to other businesses. For example, you can include links to a business in a blog post. Then, you’ll earn a small amount of commission for each click or sale. 

Run advertisements

If you build enough followers, you can monetise your channel by enabling ads to be shown alongside your content. Anybody can search for paying advertisers by using services like AdSense, but there are also platform-specific ad services that need to meet specific requirements. 

For example, to become a YouTube Partner, you need a minimum of 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 watch hours in the last 12 months. On top of that, YouTube will prioritise viewer-friendly content, meaning controversial content is less likely to be monetised. 

Become an influencer

Most people immediately think of Instagram when you mention influencer marketing. And while that’s where the trend gained popularity, you can do it on any social media platform. 

Influencers create specific content designed to promote brands and their products. In return, those businesses will either pay the influencer or give them free products. 

As always, you need a fairly large following before you can attract brands to your channel. Also, it can be a bit tricky to decide which products you choose to promote. 

For example, if you’re offered a lot of money to market a product you don’t rate very highly, you’ll have a difficult decision to make. Do you accept the money and promote a product you don’t believe in, or do you pass up the offer and maintain your integrity?

Sell your own merchandise

Some dedicated social media channels have gained such an impressive following that they can produce and sell their own merchandise. 

The products are typically related to their content, which only their dedicated followers appreciate. So, for example, you could produce clothing with common phrases and graphics used by the channel. 

Look for security flaws

You don’t even need to create a social media account to make money if you’re tech-savvy. Like many online businesses, social media sites often offer rewards, and maybe even full-time jobs, to anybody who can highlight flaws in their online security. 

Manage accounts

There are loads of opportunities to manage social media accounts on behalf of businesses for those who have a particular skill in social media management. 

Every business is expected to have a social media presence. It’s a great way to get good PR and increase brand awareness.

It’s a difficult skill to master, but the marketing benefits are huge. The public seems to love it when businesses engage in online back-and-forths, and a viral social media exchange is a massive boost for online visibility. 

Sell accounts

There’s a vast market for ready-made social media accounts with a large dedicated following. It’s a quick and easy way for the buyers to reach thousands of loyal viewers. Over time, you can grow a following and then sell it off to the highest bidder.

This can go down one of two ways:

  • Hand over the account entirely and cut your ties. 
  • Sell the channel, but continue to manage the content. 

Try crowdfunding

Crowdfunding is the process of asking a large number of people to contribute a small amount of money to fund a specific project. 

It’s used for various reasons, from charity campaigns to small business expansions. But, generally speaking, crowdfunding isn’t an option for larger businesses. For example, it wouldn’t look good if Google or Microsoft started asking people for donations.

License your content to media outlets

Online and TV news outlets are always looking for videos and pictures to include in their stories, and they’re willing to pay good money for good content. 

Things like viral videos, popular photos, or online studies can be of interest to the media. 

Manage your business accounts with a simple app

Financial management can be stressful and time-consuming when you’re self-employed. That’s why thousands of business owners use the Countingup app to make their financial admin easier. 

Countingup is the business current account with built-in accounting software that allows you to manage all your financial data in one place. With features like automatic expense categorisation, invoicing on the go, receipt capture tools, tax estimates, and cash flow insights, you can confidently keep on top of your business finances wherever you are. 

You can also share your bookkeeping with your accountant instantly without worrying about duplication errors, data lags or inaccuracies. Seamless, simple, and straightforward! 

Find out more here.