How to start a profitable blog from scratch in 2021 (ultimate step by step for beginners)

Did you know there are people in these internet streets who make 5 figures, 6 figures and even 7 figures with their blog?! Blogging is still profitable (yup, even in 2021!) and yes, you can absolutely start a profitable blog from scratch today.

Disclaimer: Blogging is not a get rich, quick scheme. It requires hard work, consistency, patience, and strategy. Today, I’m sharing how you can not only launch a blog but make money with it too!

You ready?!

First, I have a confession… blogs don’t make money.

Nope, I didn’t make a typo there. Blogs don’t make money. Businesses do. So if your blog is not a business, it’s going to be pretty freakin’ hard to earn money with it.

Your blog should have a strategy as to how revenue will be earned (will you sell a product? Offer services? Cash in with affiliate links?) as well as a business plan (who is your target market?). So as you create this blog, think from a business aspect…. not a hobby aspect.

Hobbies are things we do simply for fun when we feel like it.
A business is something we are dedicated and committed to. We push through even when we don’t feel like it because we earn money with it or plan to in the near future.

Before you decide to start a profitable blog, truly commit to it. No half-stepping, luke-warm, sorta-kinda, so-so, maybes allowed.

This page may include affiliate links, meaning at no extra cost to you, I might earn a small commission if you decide to purchase something.
 

How to start a blog from scratch 2020

WATCH THE VIDEO: How to make money blogging

(podcast version available below)

 

 

STEP 1: How to figure out your blog niche

Gone all the days where you write your blog like a Dear Diary article. Blog posts should answer questions and provide valuable content to readers. If you want to start a profitable blog then you should know that blog posts shouldn’t be about you, they should be about the reader.

Just like this specific blog post is helping you solve a problem (ie: how to start a profitable blog!), your blog post should do the same (answer a question). So the first step to starting a profitable blog is figuring out what exactly you will blog about.

blog posts shouldn’t be about you, they should be about the reader

Pick a niche when it comes to your blog. A niche that solves problems and you know enough about to be able to write about consistently. I personally believe any niche where you solve a problem (and people are willing to pay for a solution) is profitable. So no, your niche doesn’t have to be popular but it should be profitable.

Popular blog niches:

    • Beauty
    • Travel
    • Fitness
    • Food
    • Finance
    • Fashion
    • Relationships
    • Career
    • Gaming
    • Politics
    • Home Decor
    • Entrepreneurship
    • Love & Relationships
    • Hair
    • Family & Home
    • Photography
    • Diets (Such as Keto, Vegan, Vegetarian, Paleo)
    • Technology
    • Investing
    • Lifestyle Humor

If you don’t have a lot of experience in a niche, please stay away from it. Don’t start a blog in a niche simply because you’ve witnessed others’ success in it. You have to actually enjoy what you’re talking about.

 

STEP 2: How to come up with a blog name you won’t regret later

 

How to decide on a catchy blog name

In a beautiful world where the sun is always shining and the sky is never gray, I would say pick out a blog name and then buy a domain but these days it can feel like all the good domains are taken especially the first 50 in your head.

So picking a name can be a little tricky.

First, you want to think about what your blog is about as this can help you when deciding a name. For example, if your blog will be about beauty then you can incorporate the word “beauty” or “makeup” into the blog name.

Also, look up words in the thesaurus for catchy words that are similar.

I recommend also checking the word safety tool to ensure your words have no unintended meanings. For example, Therapist Smith in URL form is therapistsmith.com… which can also be confused as ‘The Rapist Smith'” … and I’m sure you definitely don’t want that.

Additionally, word generators such as panabee are great at showing domains that are available with your chosen blog name.

 

PIN IT!How to start a blog and make money

 

Deciding to use your real name as your blog name

I took the easy way out and named my blog after myself since I am a personal brand. My blog does have a niche but it’s lifestyle-focused (my life) so that’s why I decided to just go with my name.

Additionally, going with your name allows you the freedom to change your niche a little easier since my name is not aligned with a product or service.

 

STEP 3: Purchase your domain & hosting (aka website)

Now it’s time to commit!
You know what your profitable blog will be about and what it will be called so the next step is purchasing your domain and website so it’s now physical (as in physically on the internet… not physical where you can touch it!)

FYI: A domain and web hosting are different. Your domain is basically your website name. Your hosting is the service that houses your website. Think of it as a phone. Your phone is a domain. Your phone service is your web hosting. You need a domain and hosting for your blog. My recommendation is Bluehost.

Bluehost

Once you have your blog name, you can go to Bluehost and purchase domain and hosting for as low as $3.95!

There are a ton of blogging website domains and hosting but the great thing about Bluehost is you a free domain name for a year included (that’s your blog name such as “www.BreonnaQueen”), it’s affordable compare to other host and it’s great for beginners.

Simply click on get started when you go to Bluehost and decide which plan works best for you!



STEP 4: How to design a blog and make it look pretty

I highly recommend choosing WordPress for your blog. Google favors it (meaning you’re more likely to show up in google search results which means MORE traffic to your blog) and options are endless when it comes to choosing a look for your blog!

When deciding your blog appearance, think about how you want your overall blog to appear, what colors you will use, and what features you want.

How to choose a blog theme

A WordPress theme is a skin that you install on your WordPress blog that allows you to change the way your blog looks and behaves. Some are free and some are paid.

WordPress offers thousands of themes in their WordPress directory and some are free.

Sites like Themeforest and Creative market offer premium themes at a price. I highly recommend considering a premium theme as they tend to be designed better and easier to manage.

As a lifestyle blogger, it was important that my theme has a feature to include affiliate products at the bottom of a blog post. For you, it may be important that your blog has two columns.

One feature you will absolutely need when choosing a theme is that its responsive and mobile-friendly.
A lot of your traffic may come from mobile phones so it’s extremely important that your website is desktop friendly, mobile-friendly, and tablet friendly.

For example, if you’re a lifestyle blogger then I recommend looking at WordPress themes that fit the appearance of your vision. Here’s a WordPress theme for lifestyle bloggers that is chic, feminine, and mobile-friendly:

Another option you have is elementor. It allows you to customize your current theme and/or create new pages from scratch that are easy to design yet look professional. I currently use elementor on top of my premium theme for a custom website that fits all of my needs.

Here’s a quick youtube guide for using elementor as a beginner

Essential Plugins

A plugin is a piece of software that allows you to change either the appearance or function of your WordPress website. There are thousands of plugins to fit your needs but there are a few I highly recommend you download for your website.

TOP PLUGINS

Yoast Plugin is one of the top downloaded plugins for a reason! Yoast helps your blog post be more search engine optimization (SEO) friendly. Why is this important?

Well the better the SEO, the more likely your website is to appear in google search. You want this as it increases the eyeballs on your content!

WP Smush this helps decrease your page speed by compressing your image size and making it load faster

Anti-spam Bee As a blogger, you will face spam comments. A lot of spam comments.
One of the best ways to combat spam comments is with an anti-spam plugin such as an antispam bee.

 

STEP 5: Create core pages

 

Add pages to your website menu

There are a few pages you want on your website menu including:
1. About page where you share a little about you and why you created the website
2. Contact page where readers and sponsors can contact you. Make sure to include your email
3. Blog page where you share either blog categories (like I do) or a general link to your overall blog.
4. Terms and conditions page to protect yourself and all legal aspects of your business.

 

STEP 6: Write some blog post

When it comes to writing a blog post, I recommend defining the key problem/issue you want to solve for your readers and starting there. If your blog is about fitness for pregnant women then perhaps your first blog can share why you should workout when pregnant.

When it comes to how to start a profitable blog, you want to make sure that the content you are writing aligns with your business strategy.

If you are a personal trainer, writing fitness blog post makes sense if you want to sell your services (or in the future a product that aligns).

Make sure the content you are writing solves your target market problems and fits within your niche.

Plan the content

Plan the type of content you want to ask. What are the common questions you receive? What is something you want to address? What is a common misconception?

When it comes to what to write, I always say start off with common questions you receive or would like to address.

Research the content

Once you have the content you want to write, it’s time to research and ensure you’re using the right search terms.

One way to research your question is typing it into google and see what pops up (and even if it pops up)

How to start a profitable blog from scratch step by step

What pops up? Are there any blog posts that don’t address what you want? What keywords are being used?

Create a blog post outline

You should have an intro, middle, and end to your blog post. You want to highlight key points to cover in the blog post. Your blog post should solve your reader’s problem. It should answer a question.

Create a compelling blog title

You want to create a title that makes viewers want to click on your blog post. It should say what the blog is apart but in a way that piques your reader’s curiosity.

I also recommend checking your blog title in <coschedule. They rate your blog post titles. Aim for scoring at least a 75.

Write content

You know what the blog post will be about, you know the main points you will cover and you have a great blog title.

Now it’s time to write the content! Creating killer content is how to start a profitable blog!

Add visuals

Photos and videos make the content better. I like stock photo websites such as Depositphotos to find great photos for my blog. I usually wait when they have their huge photo sale such as 50 photos for $49 and buy it!

Another great option is Envato elements which has over 2,200,000 assets including unlimited photos, videos, and even wordpress themes!


Absolutely, under no condition should you use photos you found on Google. These are copyrighted and you can get in a wholeeeeee lotta legal trouble that way!

Proofread with Grammerly

No matter how many times I proofread my articles, there are always a few errors.

I HIGHLY recommend downloading the Grammarly app if you’re a blogger as it will help you with spelling and grammar. They offer a free version that helps with smelling and common grammatical errors.

Schedule your blog post

I highly recommend having a content schedule and setting an exact day that blog post goes live. I recommend it be on the same day and time each week.

For example, my audience knows to look for a new blog post on Sundays as my blog post goes live every Sunday at noon. By having a set day and time, your readers know when to look forward to your content.

Inside my profitable passion bundle, I supply a FREE content schedule you can use for your blog!

 

STEP 7: Set-up google analytics

Anyone that takes their time and provides valuable blog content wants it to be viewed and read. Google Analytics is how you find out if people are viewing it, how long they’re viewing it and even where they found your content.

Google Analytics is a free web analytics service offered by Google that allows you to see a various number of metrics relating to your blog including website traffic. This is something you want to set up immediately (or at least before you launch your blog)!

Here’s a video sharing how to set-up google analytics for wordpress

When it comes to how to start a blog from scratch, you also want to make sure that you’re creating a blog that people actually will visit (and you have a way to confirm that!).

 

So this is how to start a profitable blog from scratch! In my next post, I’m sharing how to skyrocket your blog traffic!

 

 

How to start a successful Youtube channel in 2021 (ultimate step by step for beginners)

There is so much more to YouTube than putting on a well-beat face and hitting record to let your thoughts run wild. The more time and effort you put into planning and creating content for YouTube, the more growth you’ll see in the long run. Today, I’m sharing step by step how to start a successful Youtube channel for beginners in 2021!

Because the quality of your content is just as important as the quality of your video, so it’s vital to know how to plan and create quality content.

Let’s get started, shall we?

This page may include affiliate links, meaning at no extra cost to you, I might earn a small commission if you decide to purchase something.

How to start a successful Youtube channel for beginners

 

STEP 1. How to choose a YouTube niche

When planning content for a successful YouTube channel, it’s crucial to stay true to who you are. Take a moment to ask yourself questions so you can better understand yourself as a whole. This will help to guide you in the right direction.

If you’re multi-passionate, it can be easy to get carried away trying to create different types of content. But doing so without a clear plan in place can make your youtube channel content seem inconsistent. So auditing yourself is not a step you want to skip.

An important step of starting a YouTube channel is determining what niche you will be.

When figuring out your niche, think about what you want to be known for, what interests you, and what you can talk about often. I recommend narrowing down your niche to no more than 2 when you’re just starting off.

When I first started, I only focused on Beauty, and then as my audience grew, I expanded into home decor and lifestyle content. Your niche isn’t permanent, and as you evolve, your niche will change too, but for now, focus on one thing!

For example…
– When Amazon first started, they only sold books online.
– When Nike first started, they only sold athletic tennis shoes.
– When Oprah first started, she was known only for her tv show.
– When Dwayne johnson first started, he was known only as a wrestler on WWE (Do you smell what the Rock is cooking?! *raises left eyebrow*)
– When Will Smith first started, he was known only for rapping.



BUT they evolved.

It’s perfectly normal to grow eventually, but when you first start, focus on dominating one thing! If you want to become an influencer, then you have to focus on being known for something within a specific field.

Whatever niche you choose, make sure it aligns with your passions/expertise and that you will continue to be interested in it for years to come.

Questions to ask yourself to figure out your YouTube niche:

What are you passionate about?

What do you enjoy doing? What can you talk about all day? What is something that you feel connected to?

What do you advocate for?

What is something that you never get tired of doing or supporting? Body positivity, beauty, hair care, helping women online, writing, singing? What’s your thang, sis?

What are your gifts and talents?

You can take the things you’re passionate about and your abilities and mesh them together. In doing this, you’re sharing content that you’re passionate about while staying true to yourself. There’s no room for comparison here. There’s only one you.

Think of it this way, only Beyoncé can do Beyoncé, and only you can do you.

 

What’s your personality?

What part of your personality do you want to showcase through your videos?

Let your personality shine. Do you have a killer sense of humor? Is your positive personality contagious? What makes you, you? Don’t hold these things back. The world needs your sparkle. Your personality and character adds to the uniqueness of your content, and that can’t be replicated.

What makes you unique?

Lastly, what makes you unique? What do you have that nobody else does? What story have you lived through that adds a deeper meaning to the content that you share? Include the things that make you stand out in a crowd in this list.

Take your answers to these questions into consideration when thinking of content ideas. Your passions, talents, personality, and uniqueness are integral parts of your brand. Your combination of these categories is part of what opens the door for one-of-a-kind content.

Be honest with yourself

Don’t think of things you want to be good at in the future, but find the things you do well already. Are you a natural communicator? Do you have impressive writing skills? Do you have an eye for fashion or graphic design?

If you have a hard time pinpointing your gifts and talents, ask a brutally honest friend what they think. They’ll tell you.

When planning content for your YouTube channel, it’s crucial to stay true to who you are.

Popular Youtube niches

Are you going to post beauty-themed videos, how-to tech videos, sit down storytimes? Based on your answers above decide on a general theme and niche for your YouTube content.

Common Niches for YouTube Channels:

  • Beauty
  • Travel
  • Fitness
  • Food
  • Finance
  • Fashion
  • Relationships
  • Career
  • Gaming
  • Politics
  • Home Decor
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Love & Relationships
  • Hair
  • Family & Home
  • Photography
  • Diets (Such as Keto, Vegan, Vegetarian, Paleo)
  • Technology
  • Investing
  • Lifestyle Humor

 

 

If you don’t have a lot of experience in a niche, please stay away from it. Don’t start a YouTube channel in a niche simply because you’ve witnessed others’ success in it. You have to actually enjoy what you’re talking about.

 

STEP 2: How to choose videos topics for YouTube (that people actually watch!)

With the niche you’ve chosen, list your video content ideas.

There are two main ways to go about this. First, think of the content that you would like to watch. If you create videos on topics you enjoy, you’re more likely to record a higher quality video. It’s also safe to say that if you find something interesting, others most likely will too.

If you already have a following, be sure to take the knowledge you have of your viewer demographics and interests into consideration as well.

Second, see what’s already out there. Watch some YouTube channels that share similar content to the content that you want to share.

Additionally, you can use the YouTube search bar to your advantage. Type in a topic or video idea into the search bar to see how popular that style of video is. From there, you can filter the responses to show the most recent or the most popular video on that topic.

Ps. This is a great way to see which title formats and keywords work best for that type of video.

You can take your research one step further by watching videos within the niche you want to be in. It’s essential, though, to watch for inspiration, not to copy. We’re not out here to replicate; we’re out here to represent.

Originality is key!

For example, if you want to review a specific product, you can reference similar reviews. This is a great way to see different review formats to get a better idea of how you could format yours. Then you can tweak it to fit your style.

If you’re doing a tag or a trend started by someone else, always be sure to give credit where credit is due. The point of referencing other videos is to get a better idea for an aspect of yours, never to copy.

For deeper research, I highly recommend using plugins like VidIQ and TubeBuddy (both have free options).

Pin for later!

HACK to get MORE views on your videos

Tubebuddy allows you to fully optimize your channel. They provide the best keywords and topics to use for videos that people are actually looking for. They tell you if your title tag is too long, too short or how likely it is to rank.

If you want to start a successful Youtube channel then you want to create videos that people will actually watch and engage in.

The best way to have videos that people watch is to have videos that people can easily find. When you plan and research videos, you are helping your videos become easily discoverable, which thus increases views and subscribers.

TubeBuddy helps you plan content by showing you popular tops and video types.

For example, let’s say I want to do a patio decor tutorial. By using the “keyword explorer” in Tubebuddy, I can find the best topics and keywords for my video.

Searching “patio decor” and Tubebuddy gives it a 9 rating. This means out of a score of 100; my video is about 9% likely to rank in the search results. This is awful

Tubebuddy will tell you if the keyword is searched often (a good thing) and if there’s a lot of videos already created that will saturate your view appearing in search results(a bad thing).

You want people to type in “Patio decor” and your video shows up on the first page because let’s be honest, how often do you click on page 2 or 3 when searching for something on Youtube? Rarely! You usually click whatever is on page #1! So you want to choose keywords that allow you to show up on page number 1!

Another thing I love about Tubebuddy is that they give you similar keywords on the side. I have the upgraded version so I can get unlimited keyword suggestions. I highly recommend it if you’re committed to these Youtube streets.

Now, let’s try “cheap patio decorating ideas” using Tubebuddy’s keyword explorer:

Tubebuddy rates this a 62, which is pretty good because it means you’re more likely to rank on YouTube and get more views!

The higher your videos rank, the more people will see your videos. Ranking increases your visibility which increases your subscribers, views, and *ahem* money from Adsense if you want to make money with YouTube.

Using Tubebuddy to plan your content, you know it would make more sense to create a “patio decor video focusing on being budget-friendly over a basic patio decor video that’s less likely to discovered and viewed by new YouTubers.

Be sure to research

Now that you’ve got your video ideas listed, it’s time to research. This is where you’re able to provide the most value to your viewers through the quality of your research.

Have you watched a quality product review based solely on opinion with no facts what-so-ever? How likely are you to buy that item? While opinions are important, credible information is a necessity. That’s why you’ve gotta do the research.

When researching, find as many credible resources as possible. If the theme of your video is testing beauty products, actually spend time testing the product before sharing it. Do your research on the brand and the ingredients found in the products you’re using. Learn more for yourself so that you can share useful information with your viewers.

STEP 3: How to create a content schedule (to stay consistent!)

A content plan will help you keep track of video topics, how often you need to post, which subjects you will cover, and what you need to complete a task,

I highly recommend having a content schedule and deciding on an exact day that youtube videos go live. I recommend it be on the same day(s) and time(s) each week.

This helps YouTube know when to push out your content as well as allows your subscribers to know what day to expect new content from you.

If you’re a digital gal (or guy), you can use the notes app on your phone or, you can use free digital resources like Evernote and Trello to gather for creating a content schedule.

Evernote is a free note-taking app that allows you to digitize your thoughts that you can access on your computer, tablet, or mobile device. This option is helpful when you want to jot something down on the go but don’t have a pen or paper nearby. Plus, the paper-free method is good for the environment.

Trello
is a free web-based, list-making software, and that helps jot down quick lists. Trello integrates well with other apps, like Google calendar. If you’re looking for well-rounded software to organize your life, this is the tool for you.

You can use Trello to list props you need, items you want to have handy, or talking points you want to remember.

You’ll also to include the following details inside your content schedule:
✓ Date to post
✓ Time (and time zone) to schedule
✓ Copy to include such as video title, keywords, and description
✓ Thumbnail

How to start a successful Youtube channel in 2020 (step by step for beginners)

STEP 4: What Equipment you need for your youtube channel

Once you have all of your Youtube content and channel planned out, it’s time to ensure you have the right equipment to record videos.

When it comes to recording YouTube videos, the 3 basic things you need are:
1. Something to record video with (so people can see you)
2. Something to record audio with (so people can hear you)
3. Something to edit video with
A newer cell phone can do all of 3 things, and when I first started my YouTube channel, I recorded on my iPhone too!. When starting off, use what you already have!

If you want elevated videos then the best way to have high-quality videos is investing in high-quality equipment. However, you don’t need the newest or most expensive cameras to have a successful Youtube channel!

Here are a few things I currently use and vouch for but they are a little pricey:

1. Camera


 

2. Audio


 

3. Lighting


Click here for all these YouTube equipment essentials I currently use.
 

STEP 5: How to create a Youtube account & set up your channel

Once you have planned a successful YouTube channel, it’s time to actually START your channel by creating a YouTube account!

Here is an awesome video by The Content Bug that shares step by step how to set-up and start a youtube channel from scratch.

STEP 6: How to create videos on Youtube

You’ve planned, researched, and created your account. Now its time to be SEEN and create great videos! The last step to starting a successful Youtube channel is creating, editing, and uploading videos!

Here’s a video sharing my behind the scenes as I set-up, record, and edit my YouTube videos:
 

Record the video

When it comes to being on camera, it can be a little scary putting yourself out there!

I promise it gets easier with time and practice. If you’ve planned and researched your content like in step 2, it will be a lot easier to create videos because you know exactly what to talk about.

When it comes to being more natural on camera, here are a few tips:
1. Imagine you’re talking to one person
2. Have a bullet list of everything you want to talk about
3. Practice
5. Breathe. (seriously… say a sentence, then breathe. Say another sentence, breathe)
6. Progress beats perfection. The only way to improve at something is to do it over and over again

Seriously, the more you create videos the better you will get, so I urge you to push through. You will build camera-confidence the more you put yourself on camera.

Edit the video

Now it’s time to edit your video! You want to ensure you are removing any parts of the video where you’re rambling, saying a bunch of ums, or ultimately just doesn’t fit within the video.

When it comes to the best video editors, I highly recommend Filmora video editor because it’s super beginner-friendly with an easy interface and also allows you to add special effects, texts, cool transitions and there’s even a green screen option!

It’s less than $100 for the editor, and you can even use it to edit Instagram stories, Instagram posts, podcasts, and so much more!

Publish the video

Recently, Youtube changed the way you upload videos (they change the platform often). Here’s a video from Creator Fundamentals sharing step by step how to upload a YouTube video in 2020.

Market & optimize the content

Once you have uploaded the video, the final step is to optimize the video so you can get more eyeballs on your content. I have a completely free checklist of everything you should do when uploading new YouTube videos to ensure you get the most views and traffic!

YouTube is a powerful way to express yourself while sharing your passions with the world. That’s why it’s important to be intentional with every area of your YouTube channel.

 

I hope this guide has helped you so you can start a successful Youtube channel! If you’re a new YouTuber, be sure to share your URL below as well as what your video channel is about!

In my next blog post, I’m sharing how to get more views on your YouTube videos!

 

 

If you’re starting to realize that you’ve still got a lot of work to do, don’t sweat it. I have created an ultimate YouTube checklist for you! It’s everything you should be doing to create bangin’ videos and a bangin’ Youtube channel! This ultimate checklist is FREE, and it’s even interactive so you can checkmark things off via the pdf as you go!

How to become a social media influencer in 2021 (ultimate step by step for beginners)

Oh, so you want to become a social media influencer? The influencer who has something to share with the world, helps people, builds a fantastic community online, receives items for free to try out (mmmm, more PR packages on the doorsteps?!) and most importantly, gets PAID for their influence. I see you, sis and this guide is all about helping you become an influencer for free in these internet streets.

 

What is a social media influencer

First let’s talk about what exactly an influencer is….

An influencer is someone who has specialized knowledge, authority, or insight into a specific field and can affect the buying process of their audience.

Ultimately, influencers have built a community on social media, and through their relationship with their audience, they influence (i.e., influencers).

We all have the power to be influencers and influence specific behavior within a community. You’re probably influencing people right now, such as when you recommend a product to your friends, and they buy it or when you brag about a restaurant you tried recently, and a friend tries it out based on that.

That’s affecting the buying process of a person… *ahem* *ahem* and influencing them.

There are all types of influencers; mega, macro, micro, nano, pimp daddy strong, and for the sake of this mega guide, I’m breaking down each 3 for you. You’re welcome.

 

What is a mega-influencer?

A mega influencer is ultimately someone who has millions of followers. They’re at the top of the list when it comes to influencers and has a massive audience with celebrity prestige.

 

What is a macro-influencer?

Macro influencers have anywhere from 100,000- 999,999 followers. They tend to focus on a specific category such as beauty, lifestyle, gaming, fitness, fashion, or business.

 

What is a micro-influencer

A micro-influencer is someone who has anywhere between 1,000 to 100,000 followers. They focus on a specific niche or area and generally viewed as an expert in their industry or specialist on a specific topic.

This is the most common type of influencer.

 

What is a nano-influencer

A nano-influencer is anyone with a following between 500-1,000.

Their following is small but intimate and tight-knit. Nano-influencers are usually hyper niched and tend to have a local audience.

 

Which type of influencer makes money?

All-lum-em(All of them)
You don’t need a million followers in order to be an influencer or earn income. You can make money and be an influencer no matter your audience size.

I personally believe you only need 1000 followers to get paid sponsorships. However, I know individuals who secured paid sponsorships with less than that!

There are perks to each type of influence, and a good brand knows this! While mega influencers have large audiences and massive visibility, a micro and nano influencer are generally better at pushing sales because of their engagement rate is higher.

With less than 3,500 followers on my Facebook page and less than 6,000 followers on my Instagram, I was able to completely sell out of my business event TWICE and I sold out in less than 2 weeks!
How? Since my audience is smaller, I’m able to possess a level of authenticity that is often harder for influencers to sustain as they grow larger audiences.

It’s the personal connections I have with my smaller audience that enables me to build an engaged and intimate community that drives sales for my events and digital products. You should aim for this too. Being influential > Being an influencer.

FACT: How much you make and how well you impact as an influencer is NOT tied soley to your audience size.

What are the benefits of becoming an influencer

Influencers are trendsetters and have a direct impact on their community’s buying decisions.

Some benefits of being an influencer include:

  • Helping people and impacting the world around you
  • Becoming a well-known, authority figure within your niche
  • Incentives such as free products and trips (technically, not free since you do have to pay taxes for gifts exceeding a specific price)
  • Paid sponsorships
  • Possible increase in sales for products and services since more people will buy from someone who is influential, especially on social media.

As an influencer myself, I have been able to leverage my influence to increase my income in multiple ways.

 

How do influencers make money?

Influencer marketing is a billion-dollar industry and there are plenty of influencers who make a living from their influence. There are millionaire influencers.

 

Here are some popular ways influencers make money

  • Working with brands to promote their product
  • Creating digital products such as courses and books to sell
  • Offering services such as coaching, web design, photography, video editing, etc
  • Selling physical products such as their own products or private label
  • Speaking engagements and hosting events
  • Promoting items through affliate marketing
  • Ad revenue on their blogs and videos

Influencers can make money in a multitude of ways depending on their niche, audience, following, and industry.

 

How to become an influencer for free in 2020

STEP 1: Choose your niche

An influencer is a well-known, sought-out, authority figure within a specific niche, so to become an influencer you need a niche.

When figuring out your niche, think about what you want to be known for, what interests you, and what you can talk about often. I recommend narrowing down your niche to no more than 2 when you’re just starting off.

When I first started, I only focused on Beauty, and then as my audience grew, I expanded into business content. Your niche isn’t permanent, and as you evolve, your niche will evolve too, but for now, focus on one thing!

For example…
When Amazon first started out, they only sold books online.
When Nike first started out, they only sold athletic tennis shoes.
When Oprah first started out, she was known only for her tv show.
When Will Smith first started out, he was known only for rapping.
When Dwayne johnson first started out, he was known only as a wrestler on WWE (Do you smell what the Rock is cooking?! *raises left eyebrow*)

BUT they evolved over time. It’s perfectly normal to grow eventually, but when you first start, focus on dominating one thing! If you want to become an influencer then you have to focus on being known for something within a specific field.

Whatever niche you choose, make sure it aligns with your passions/expertise and that you will continue to be interested in it for years to come.

 

Common questions to ask yourself when deciding on a niche

1. What comes easy to you and solves a problem for someone else?
2. What are your interests that you would love to create content about long term?
3. What are the things that you enjoy doing, even without getting paid for them?
4. What are some issues you’re able to solve for people easily?

 

Popular Niches

 

  • Beauty
  • Travel
  • Motherhood
  • Fitness
  • Food
  • Finance
  • Fashion
  • Gaming
  • Home Decor
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Love & Relationships
  • Hair
  • Family & Home

 

 

STEP 2: Choose your platform

There are a ton of social media platforms to build your influence on… Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, LinkedIn, TikTok to name a few.

… but wait you can also choose to be a podcaster
… or a blogger

YES, there are a ton of social media platforms; however, you don’t have to be on every single one posting every single day!

If you are just starting out, I say focus on building 1-2 social media audiences first. Don’t spread yourself thin by trying to be on every single one!

The first step to becoming an online influencer is to sign up for the same exact platforms that your ideal audience uses. This may be Instagram if your perfect audience is 25 years olds, and you plan to take a lot of high-quality photos.

Perhaps you’re great on video and enjoy creating tutorials? Youtube may be better suited for you.

To set yourself up for success, think about what your perks are and what is the best way to connect to your audience. If your ideal audience is professionals who are interested in resume building, then LinkedIn will be a better fit for you over TikTok, which tends to cater to a younger teen demographic and be an extremely casual social media platform.

For me, my main focus is my blog, my YouTube channel and Instagram Pinterest. I invest the most time in these platforms because that’s where my audience is and tends to engage with me the most.

Additionally, each social media platform has guidelines and differences in operation, so you want to ensure you know the dos and don’ts of each platform. For example, those on Facebook enjoy live-style casual videos, whereas, on Youtube, editing is expected. Know the specifics of each social media platform so you can set yourself up for optimal success.

This step is crucial because you will be investing a lot of time into a platform.

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How to become an influencer for free
 

STEP 3: Study your craft

So you’ve decided on your niche and the platforms you will focus on, okay now what?

Well, chances are you aren’t the most experienced expert in your field, right? Therefore, I highly recommend dedicating time each week to learning and developing your skills so you can be that go-to expert.

Stay updated on the latest trends so you can help your audience.

 

Ways to stay updated in your niche as an influencer

Read books – I, personally, make it a goal to read at least one new book a month. I pay $9.99 a month which allows me to read unlimited books with Amazon’s Kindle Unlimted! You don’t need a kindle either! You can download the app on any phone, tablet and even access via desktop!
Click here for your FREE first month of Kindle Unlimted

Courses – There are a ton of courses out there, and I’ve watched A TON! I’ve watched courses to help me with my Pinterest strategy, set-up a blog, learn ads, and even become better at recording videos! I highly recommend skillshare. They have thousands of courses for one flat yearly fee.
Click here to get 2 free months of skillshare!

Join Facebook groups – Engage with others within relevant Facebook groups to learn trends and connect with others!
Two Facebook groups I recommend:
– my own personal one (I know, bias) The content creator circle
She’s a creative – a group for women entrepenuers created by my friend Kay who runs the Mrs Kay H Blog
Both groups are pretty high level and focus on creating content online

Listen to Podcast – Listen to podcast

Network with others – by attending local events and influencer events such as create and cultivate.

Invest in yourself – Invest in things that make it easier for you and allow you to spend more time on the things you enjoy (and less on the things you do not!). For example, if you hate to create emails pitching to brand, then invest in plug and play templates that take that guesswork out of it for you.

I use to struggle with being productive. When I purchased the Productivity bundle by Ultimate bundles it made it easier for me to be more productive because it included time management printables, routine building workbooks and even courses on better time organization.

Invest in you and the things that will make it easier for you to hit your goals.

Invest in the things that will make it easier for you to accomplish your goals , BUT please know what’s an investment and what’s just a plain’ ol expense. If you are not making any money as an influencer yet, then you want to spend only what’s necessary. Bootstrap it so you can save money while making money.

For example, hiring a photographer may not be necessary and logical if you don’t have much money. Instead, try taking photos of yourself or having a friend take them.

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STEP 4: Define your personal brand

As an influencer, your personal brand is extremely important. It’s who you are, how you promote yourself, and how people see you.

 

What is a personal brand?

Your personal brand is the unique combination of your experiences, skills, and personality. It’s your story, quirks about you, how you conduct yourself, your behavior, your mannerism, your appearance, and your attitude.

Your personal brand is how you differentiate yourself from others.

For example, there are a ton of fashion influencers. Literally.

Perhaps what sets you apart is your focus on budget-friendly plus size fashion. Maybe you’re super funny with two dogs and a love for cereal. Your quirks and mannerisms set you apart from others.

 

How to develop your personal brand as an influencer

 

Know your voice

What is your brand voice? Traditional? Friendly? Quirky? Helpful? Professional?
Whatever your speaking style, make sure it’s consistent and aligns with your overall brand.

For example, if you’re a real estate blogger, it makes sense to be professional. However, as a gaming blogger, you may lose your audience if you’re too professional.

Determine your brand colors

This is extremely important if you’re a blogger. You should have brand visuals and colors that make it easy to identify your brand and is cohesive across the board.

If you’re not that great at creating visuals, I highly recommend Creative Market. You can purchase website themes, logos, scripts, social media templates and MORE!

Keep it consistent

People should be able to recognize your brand no matter the platform.

For example, all of your social media platforms should have the same name. If your name is Jessica Sue on Instagram and your blog is Jessicasue.com, then your Facebook should be the same.

Your profile pictures and colors should also be consistent.

For example, my brand is chic, polished, girly, and vibrant. I want that to clearly come across the minute you visit my website and socials, which is why my brand colors are black, white, and deep pink.

One way I make it easy to stay consistent with my brand is with Canva. I create most of my graphics using Canva, and with the premium version, there’s a section to add your brand colors and script so that you can stay consistent with your visuals.

When you visit any of my social media profiles, you see cohesiveness and consistency.

 

Ways to keep your visuals consistent

✓ The same design or logo
✓ The same slogan
✓ The same profile picture and images
✓ The same color pallet and color scheme
✓ The same font or typography
✓ The same marketing materials.

Remember, your brand should all convey a unified emotion, vision, and personality.

Need help branding yourself better? Inside my profitable passion bundle, I provide a FREE brand identity cheatsheet and content calendar!

 

STEP 6: Create a content plan

Now that you have your niche and the platform, it’s time to develop a content plan!

This content plan will help you understand how often you need to post on each platform, which topics you will cover, the best times to post, etc.

How often will you post?
What topics will you cover for the month?
Will you have themes?
Are there any Holidays you want to create content around? For example, if you’re a home decor blogger, then you may want to create blog posts content that is Christmas themed since “Christmas home decor” is trendy and heavily searched on Pinterest.

Create a plan for your content!

Remember, a goal without a plan is just a dream!

 

STEP 7: Start creating juicy content (and do it consistently!)

It’s time to create a really valuable and irresistibly juicy content.
Content that answers questions.
Content that solves problems.
Content that entertains, educates, informs, and inspires.

 

The quality of the content you release will determine if people engage with you or not. If your content is excellent, your audience will grow. If your content is trash, well, you won’t have much of an audience.

 

If your goal of creating content is to land paid partnerships then you want to be sure you are focusing on the quality of content as well. Brands do not and will not work with influencers whose images are blurry, and blog posts are janky. Therefore, this may require that you invest in your content to ensure its high quality.

For example, as a Youtuber, I invested in better camera equipment. Additionally, as a blogger, I invested in a website (I now use siteground for my hosting and domain). These are things I chose to invest as an influencer (and I’ve also made my money back in!).

Know that these are investments, and if you want to turn your influence into a business, it may even be tax deductive! Here’s a blog post all about tax deductibles you can claim as a blogger, influencer and/or youtuber.

Know these content details Start creating the content that you want to start posting. You’ll also to include the following details:
✓ Platform
✓ Date
✓ Time (and time zone)
✓ Copy
✓ Visuals (e.g., photo, video, illustration, infographic, gif, etc.)
✓ Link to assets
✓ Link to published post

I like to create my content inside of Trello. It’s free to join!

 

Be consistent

You can’t make one blog post and expect to go viral. It takes time to build an audience, and if you’re consistent, it will take a heck of a lot shorter time to do.

Make sure you’re posting consistently. Every single social media platform including your blog and podcast requires consistency and patience to grow.

    Here are a few tools you can use to be consistent and schedule post:

  • Planoly – For Instagram & Pinterest
  • Tailwind – For Pinterest (My favoriteeeeeeeee since they have Pinterest Tribes)
  • Later – For Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest
  • Mailerlite – For emails

Consistency is a huge component if you want to become an influencer. Too little and you won’t grow. Too much and you’ll annoy your audience until they unfollow you. *real tears*

 

Engage with your audience

Building a community involves you engaging with your community too! Respond to comments, answer questions, create polls, and ask even ask questions, so your audience feels included.

Don’t post a photo and log out of Instagram as if you’re Beyonce. Instead, end your caption with a question and spend time replying to comments, DM’S, and engaging with other accounts.

 

The best way to build an authentic community is to connect with your community, and you do that by engaging!

 

 

STEP 8: Know your audience and study your analytics

Now your brand is poppin’, you’re creating juicy content, your audience is growing and you’re being consistent with it…

You go, girl!

Wait, you thought it was over? Oh no, girl.

This is a perfect time to learn about your audience. Most social media platforms will let you know what your demographics are including age, gender, and location. KNOW THESE.

Look at your content and find out what is the most popular and gets the most engagement as this is the content your audience wants to see more of.

By studying your analytics, you’re able to tweak your content plan and grow your audience (and even determine if your audience is growing!).

Additionally, if you want to work with brands, it’s extremely important you know your audience demographics and numbers (such as your engagement rate) because brands will ask to ensure it aligns with their target market.

 

STEP 9: Attract & reach out to brands

If you want to attract brands then you need to create high-quality content. Your goal should be to create content that also garners healthy engagement rates with your audience.

I believe once you’ve grown your account to 1,000+ followers, you can start reaching out to brands in your niche.

A common misconception is that you can’t work with brands with a small account, and this is absolutely not true. If you have an engaged following and it’s the brand’s target audience, then you can land an opportunity.

 

How to work with brands

Create a list of all the brands you want to work with. If you’re a style blogger, create a list of your favorite clothing brands. If you’re a fitness YouTuber, write out all the health and fitness brands that align with you. Create a list of all the ideal brands you would like to work with that align with your personal brand that your audience will enjoy.

Once you have your list, then research who is in control of influencer marketing! Go to LinkedIn and look up who is the head of influencer marketing/social media or visit the website to see if there’s a contact email for it. If nothing else, you can even hit the brand up on social media and ask for the email contact who is in charge of influencer marketing.

From there, you want to email the brands and pitch to them. It may seem scary at first, but if you do it enough, I promise you eventually get a YES back.

Hey, your first pitch email might be that big, YES you need! Pitching is one of the best ways to make money when it comes to how to work with brands as an influencer.

Interested in getting my exact scripts to pitch to brands? Check out my influencer with income toolkit! I also provide a FREE media kit and videos to help you determine how much to charge as an influencer!

 

BONUS: Your network is your net worth

Collaborate and connect with other influencers in your area! Other influencers are NOT to be looked at as competition but as ways to collaborate and connect.

Having blogger and Youtuber friends is one way I have been able to grow my influence and my business. I absolutely recommend attending influencer events, joining influencer communities (such as masterminds and even Facebook groups!), and reaching out to fellow influencers on your platform.

I want to add a disclaimer to this. If you’re a brand new influencer, I recommend reaching out to other new influencers. Don’t reach out to influencers who have been in the game eight years with 500,000+ followers and expect them to want to collaborate. Be mindful of the collaboration request.

 

BONUS: Make it easy for brands to reach out to you by having your email on your social media platforms


Make sure you have your contact info on every platform. Your email should be on your social media platforms and blog.

If a brand discovers your content, make it easy for them to reach out to you for possible collaborations.

So here is my ULTIMATE guide step by step to becoming a social media influencer. Are you ready to become an influencer and work with brands? Let me know below in the comments!

Need help determining how much to charge as an influencer? Want access to the same emails I use to pitch to brands and land 4 and 5 figure deals?! Yup, I’m giving you ALL of my templates PLUS MORE inside my INFLUENCER WITH INCOME TOOLKIT!

 

In my next blog post, I’m sharing 5 websites EVERY influencer should sign up to so they can start working with brands.

 

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tips to becoming an influencer how to become an influencer 2020