How I Made My First $1k from Sponsored Instagram Posts

How I Made My First $1k from Sponsored Instagram Posts

Ever wondered how social media influencers make money? Well, you’ve come to the right place. Because today we’re talking sponsored Instagram posts.


Since Instagram first launched, the rise of social media marketing has skyrocketed.

All over the world, brands are connecting with influencers & marketing to a wider audience than ever before. Whether that be through PR agencies, influencer apps or direct contact, influencer marketing is now one of the most popular methods of marketing for brands, big & small.

The opportunities are endless with influencer marketing.

From YouTube tutorials to sponsored blog posts, giveaways, travel vlogs, Snapchat/Instagram story features, newsletter mentions & so much more. But, of course, today we are focusing on sponsored Instagram posts & how you can make hundreds, even thousands of dollars from a single photo.

And that my friends, is exactly what I’ve done.


When I first started my Instagram account, I never imagined that I would one day be making money from it.  

In the beginning, I posted photos of my very small makeup collection every couple of days. Then I got researching & built my account up to around 2k followers by posting consistently [daily] & using these techniques.

It wasn’t long until I started being contacted by small businesses in the beauty industry. I began collaborating through contra posts (creating a post in exchange for a product) and after a while, bigger brands started reaching out.

Then, before I knew it, I was handing out my rates card, making a side income from sponsored Instagram posts.



Reaching out to brands & negotiating rates can take time. And when you’re first starting out, it can be a little daunting.

Now here’s where TRIBE comes in.

An app that’s readily available to influencers worldwide to collaborate with brands at the touch of a button? Yes please.

The influencer marketing platform was founded by Jules Lund, a radio & tv presenter from Melbourne, Australia. You Aussies may remember him from “Fifi & Jules” on your local radio network.

TRIBE started back in late 2015 & since then has become one of the leading influencer marketing platforms worldwide.

Designed to bring brands and influencers together & make collaborating on Instagram so much easier, TRIBE is my number one choice of influencer marketing platform.

Not convinced yet? No worries, let’s get into the finer details…


Who can use TRIBE?

TRIBE is available for download through the Apple App Store & Android Play Store to users worldwide. So, it doesn’t matter where you are in the world, you can make money through sponsored Instagram posts on TRIBE.

The app is completely free & has no nasty add-ons that will cost you a fortune in the long run. Did you hear me? TRIBE is free. Zero dollars. Not a penny. Na-da. Okay, you get it… It’s a bargain.

To be able to apply for campaigns listed on TRIBE you’ll need:
A ) An Instagram account
B ) Minimum of 3k followers
C ) A mobile phone (obvs)


Yes, you need a minimum of three thousand followers to be able to apply for campaignsbut you can still download the app before you reach the 3k limit.

And, whilst you’re browsing TRIBE’s campaigns & lusting over all the brands you could be working with, you can learn how to gain 10k followers in 10 monthsWell, you can learn how I did it at least.


Is it safe?

Definitely. After using the app for multiple sponsored Instagram posts in the past, I can confidently say that it’s all legit & completely safe.

There’s no need to be worried about giving our your Instagram password.

TRIBE values your privacy.

In fact, one of the best parts about creating sponsored Instagram posts through TRIBE is that you still own the full rights to your photo, even after it’s published.

By applying for a campaign, you are giving that brand permission to use your photo for marketing on that platform only.

So if you’ve created a sponsored Instagram post for a brand through TRIBE, you’re guaranteed to not see it pop up on Facebook or Twitter without them contacting you (& paying you) first.

Oh, & payments are processed through PayPal which means that you don’t have to worry about giving out your bank details. Plus, PayPal isn’t only super secure, but funds come through instantly and you can transfer straight from there to your bank account.


How does it work?

First, brands post their campaign – usually focused on a specific product or service.

The campaign explains a bit about the company, the type of content they want to see from influencers & a few mood board images, great for sparking creativity.

You can find different briefs by browsing through the categories in the app itself. Here’s what’s inside:
– Beauty & Personal Care
– Animals
– Automotive
– Business, Finance & Insurance
– Children & Family
– Education & Books
– Entertainment & Events
– Fashion
– Food & Drink
– Health, Fitness & Sport
– Home & Garden
– Photography, Art & Design
– Restaurants, Bars & Hotels
– Social Enterprise & Not-for-profit
– Social Media, Web & Tech
– Travel & Destinations


Once you’ve read the rules & determined the campaign suits your Instagram, you can start creating your post. Be sure not to leave it too long as campaigns don’t stay up for too long. Plus, you don’t want to miss out if other influencers get in while their budget is still high.

Then, after you’ve edited your post, all you need to do is open TRIBE, go to the campaign & “create your post”.

You name your price (more on this in a minute), insert your photo, write your caption & add the pre-loaded hashtags.



Now the waiting game…

TRIBE allows up to 7 days for brands to get back to you. However, their team is great at communicating with you along the way & letting you know where your post is at.

Once your post is approved, you simply post it straight from the app & within 24 hours, payment is made.

It’s seriously that simple!



Will I get sent products?

Unless a brief says otherwise, TRIBE doesn’t recommend brands sending influencers products to use in their sponsored Instagram posts.

Because TRIBE prides itself on authenticity, influencers are encouraged to only apply for a campaign if they sincerely love the product/service.


How much should I charge?

If you’ve got no idea what to charge for sponsored Instagram posts, or just want to know if you’re not underselling yourself, not to worry.

TRIBE has a super helpful chart so you can find out what you should be charging.

All you need to do is work out approximately where your Instagram account stands on the chart & quote that amount.

So let’s say you have approximately 10k followers & are unsure what to charge. According to the below chart, you could be charging between $100-$200.

Of course, the final figure is entirely up to you. But for newbies, I honestly think this chart is freakin’ fabulous!


Check out the chart below straight from TRIBE’s website.

3-20K $75-$300
20-100K $300-$600
100-250K $550-$800
200-500K $800-$1200
500K+ $1200+
3-20K £60-£200
20-100K £200-£400
100-250K £400-£550
200-500K £550-£800
500K+ £800+


Any tips for getting posts approved?

Well, I briefly touched on post authenticity earlier & how TRIBE prides themselves on this principle. Striving to provide brands with quality content & genuine reviews from influencers through their platform, it’s important to keep this in mind when creating your posts.

Only apply for the posts that appeal to not only you but your audience. 

If your followers are used to seeing gorgeous, girly fashion shots, do you think they would be interested in seeing a sponsored Instagram post about test driving a V8? I’ll let you work that one out…

These brands know who’s applying because they genuinely love their product & those who just want the cash. Actually, this also applies to your followers. They’ll see straight through your sponsored Instagram post & know your heart is not in it. Of course, That’s if your post is approved first.

Here’s another important tip – stick to the brief. 

Read the brief carefully & understand what the brand is trying to achieve in their campaign. For example, if Hairhouse Warehouse is trying to promote an exclusive online only sale, don’t write your caption as “Get in store quick for some great bargains!”

Try to avoid displaying other competitor brand labels in your posts. This can often deter brands from accepting your offer as they will be considering whether or not they will be able to repost the image to their own Instagram for future marketing.

And the last, but very not least tip, is to stay true to yourself & your audience.

Make your photography & your captions cohesive with the rest of your Instagram account. Of course, you want your sponsored Instagram posts to be as honest as the rest of your work & to blend in with the rest of your feed.

And that concludes this very long & lengthy post.

Now go on, download TRIBE and see for yourself just how simple influencer marketing can be. You can thank me later.




How I Made My First $1k from Sponsored Instagram Posts



















  1. Jun 2017 /

    Loved this post Elley. I absolutely love TRIBE. One piece of advice I learnt from TRIBE themselves is to always think outside the box. Brands love seeing that and are more likely to approve your post. Xx

    • Jun 2017 /

      Thank you so much for reading Toni – I am so glad you enjoyed it!
      Always so supportive, you are!

      You’re totally right – thinking outside the box is what makes you stand out on an influencer platform like TRIBE.

      Can’t wait to see what amazing content you come up with next girl!

      Elley xx

  2. Jun 2017 /

    Great post, Elley. I’ve seen some guff online about Tribe but was a bit discouraged about the minimum 3k followers but I understand why they institute that rule. I will definitely save this for later once my follower count has grown some.

    • Jun 2017 /

      Jade, don’t be discouraged by the minimum 3k follower requirement. If you set your mind to it & focus on creating unique, beautiful & fresh content, you will reach 3k followers in no time.

      I think it’s more in place to ensure that people who want to work with these brands are serious about it & aren’t just in it for a quick bit of cash I guess. 3k followers is an achievement & I can’t wait to see you get there! What is your Insta handle? I need to see your feed girl!

      Elley xx

  3. Jun 2017 /

    Love this post! If it wasn’t for you, I would forever to make $1k. HAHA! Love youuuu

    • Jun 2017 /

      Know your worth girlfriend!

      You know I’m always here for your support – you’re amazing.
      Can’t wait to see what fresh content you have coming hehe.

      Much love,
      Elley xx

    • Jun 2017 /

      Keep pushing girl & you’ll get there! Determination is key in achieving your goals. You can do it!

      What’s your IG handle?

      Elley xx

      • Jul 2017 /

        Aww thankyou!! And you’re already following!! (lovesomachixx) I literally screamed when I got the notification!

        Have a good day,
        Love Somachi xx

  4. Jun 2017 /

    I’m loving Tribe at the moment, such a cool app! ☺️ Great post

    • Jun 2017 /

      Isn’t it great?! Such a fabulous platform in my opinion (if you can’t already tell).
      Being able to connect with brands all over the world so simply is seriously a blessing – takes out all the hard work.

      Glad you loved the post!

      Elley xx

  5. Jun 2017 /

    Thanks for this post Elley, such a good one! I have signed up to Tribe but am approx. 200 followers shy in Insta. I have read your post for gaining followers on Insta, but since the new algorithm I have majorly struggled to gain any new ones. No matter how many I gain, sure enough, others will unfollow. Are you experiencing this as well and do you have any extra tips?

    • Jul 2017 /

      Hey Tilly, thanks for stopping by – I am so glad you enjoyed the post!

      As for gaining followers on Instagram, I think the most important thing at the moment with all the algorithm changes is that you remain consistent. Post minimum once daily & engage with as many people as you can. Spend 10 – 15 minutes at least once per day (more if you can) and like & comment on as much as you can.

      Let me know how you get on girl – Elley xx

  6. Jul 2017 /

    I just downloaded the Tribe app and fairly new to sponsored posts. I need some clarity. For example, there is currently a campaign up for a teeth whitening product called GOGO SMILE. In order to submit is this app telling me that I need to buy the product(S), take my image with their product, post with a caption and if they approve my image then I get paid? So for each of these generally you have to buy the product and showcase how you would market it via your photo??? Sorry is misunderstanding but I want clarity before I start submitting to ensure I increase my odds. Thanks for the great article.

    • Jul 2017 /

      Thanks so much for reading Kay!

      That’s right – as I explain in the post, you have to create your content first & then submit for approval. If they like your post, they’ll approve & then you post & get paid!

      Good luck gorgeous,
      Elley x

  7. Jul 2017 /

    This is great information, and so pretty might I add!! Can’t wait to get to 3K followers!

    • Jul 2017 /

      Thanks so much for reading Chenelle! I’m so glad you enjoyed the read & glad you’re determined to hit 3k!

      Elley xx

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