How many likes do you need to get paid on Instagram?

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If you’re on Instagram, chances are you have seen one of these things. Someone you follow has endorsed this book. In the past month I have done several things.

It is easy to poke fun at the new friend who has taken this job, but the little voice in your head keeps asking, Are they getting paid for this? Quickly, he replied, I can hold a bottle of self-tanner and smile – and I will get paid for it too!

These influencers, or ‘influencers’ as society has labeled them, have created a digital empire by snapping a few semi-filtered pictures with one hand, and by promoting the latest trends with the other hand. A credible business is built by obtaining a significant amount of social engagement, and by building an influential persona, which will be rewarded with products, money, and sometimes even fame.

We are putting numbers to the test in order to see how financially independent people are from a couple thousand likes. So, it is very realistic for us to conquer that task.

It Pays to be Popular 💁

As you climb up the influencer ladder, it’s common that you will be paid more for each post if you have a higher number of followers. By doing that, brands realize that the more eyes that see content, the more brands are willing to pay for the content.

What is the magic number that one must hit in order for these posts to become profitable?

10,000 followers on Instagram.

What are some micro influencers doing that have anywhere from 6,000 to 10,000 followers? People who are famous may have gained so many followers by posting some cool things. But those behind these handles are more eager to grow their pages around a niche.

A recent survey has found that these accounts make a combined income of, on average, $80.00 per post. However, many micro-influencers delay charging upfront, in order to first gain a larger, longer-term presence.

Then, it can be done as a hobby, but this is the level that gets your Instagram handle in the door for future collaborations and sponsored posts, filled with some free perks along the way.

It is possible to reach 100,000 followers.

At this stage in the game,  brands are sending out direct messages to accounts with this amount of followers like clockwork, asking for product endorsement in exchange for freebies: Think designer-labeled clothing, monthly packages catered to health and wellness, or a free meal from the restaurant that wants exposure.

There may be some occasional small amounts of money that they receive, but many influencers are hesitant to start charging money at this time, because it may delegitimize their growing success.

When someone teaches people how to use Instagram, they will use foodstagrams to teach others how to use Instagram. One self-proclaimed foodstagrammer currently has 72,000 followers. While hundreds of likes swarm in for each post, the account is still waiting to make money from its work until it reaches at least 100,000 people. That’s the socially acceptable marker.

It’s something that is somewhat unspoken that influencers should expect to be paid $10.00 per 1000 followers they have, once they hit that 100,000 mark. So, if you charge for posts before that is reached, you may be paid less, or you may settle the money before it is fully used.

Influencers who have between 50,000 and 80,000 followers get around $200.00 per post. The price point of that is dependent on the advertiser. Some accounts make deals with brands that require them to post promotional codes on their feed. Each time a new user uses their code, they get a percentage of the sale. Other accounts opt for giveaways that only promote their following.

Whether these middle-tier accounts are maintaining their presence on the side working vigorously to turn their accounts into a  full-time career, their followings are impressive.

1,000,000 Followers on Instagram!

Is it possible to jump from 100,000 followers to one million? Absolutely, yes, it is. There is no standard manual or rules that you should follow, as to what to post and how much to charge for it.

Accounts with that kind of followership (think 250,000 to 500,000 followers) have hit the jackpot of Instagram influence, with the possibility of earning as much as $670.00 per post.

And it does not even need to be a picture that is put on their feed that brings in the cash.

Large Instagram accounts have many features that lower-tier handles cannot access yet. For example, if an account is verified (blue check mark) and if an Instagram story can be swiped up, brands and companies can use these features to execute more effective influencer marketing campaigns.

When an account has more than one million followers, they are able to charge whatever they want.

Time is Money ⏰💰

There is more to it than just taking nice photos and tagging brands. Not only do Instagram influencers need to have an engaged following, they also need to have those followers engaged with their content.

Many middle-tier influencers are lumped into direct-message groups. In each pod, there are 15 other accounts who are also trying to become successful.

According to the influential community, many of those people are posting new posts regularly. That is the expectation that everyone else should also participate in those accounts. It is best to have five comments, and also include emojis, because that will help you increase your engagement.

If you decide to join one of these groups, or if you decide not to participate in one, that will have a significant impact on how much money you are able to make from your account.

Curious if your account has all the necessary ingredients to start a business? Contact Us!


1)    If you quit your day job to earn money from your Instagram influencer salary, it is easy to quit. The most important thing is to acquire thousands of followers before you can make any money from your influencer account.

2)    Instagram influencers who have under 10,000 followers can make an average of $88.00 per post. On average, people who have under 100,000 followers will earn $200.00 per post, but it is not uncommon for that number to vary from account to account. On most accounts, you are frequently gifted with free goods or discounts for posting.

3)    That is, accounts that have between 250,000 and 500,000 followers can make a pretty penny by posting content on their accounts for brands, whether that be a static picture, a GIF-like video or an Instagram story. When an influencer has reached one million followers, it is safe to assume that he is making a decent amount of money, and working very hard to maintain that income.