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How To Become An Instagram Millionaire

Believe it. You can make some serious cash through the social media platform.

Lindsay Friedman

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Instagram is the future of marketing

Many of us have fantasies of becoming a millionaire by way of Instagram. Why can’t we be like the Rich Kids of Instagram or Instagram guru Liz Eswein – who was able to start her own social media management firm following the success of her account?

Of the hundreds of millions of Instagram users, it can’t be that hard to match your income to your lavish-lifestyle instaphotos look, right?

Turns out, figuring out the minefield that is social media and determining how to make your account a gold mine isn’t as easy as it sounds.

Luckily, Dorry Levine, a digital-media strategist from ReThink Media and Nick (who tells us he prefers not to disclose his last name), creator of the popular @MillionaireLifestyle Instagram account, provides a few tips to grow your account into a money maker.

 

Look and act the part

Usain-Bolt-runner

Usain Bolt

It starts with the million-dollar photo, Levine says. It should be a clear, high quality and attractive with an image that’s identifiable. Olympic runner Usain Bolt’s Instagram is the perfect example of this – taking ownership of his brand and profession as an athlete and competitor.

“Pixelated pictures aren’t a good look,” she cautions. “Show that you’ve given some thought and attention to this.”

A similar effort should be put into the username, which should match the message you’d like to convey. Make sure you know the purpose for your account. Is it professional? Personal? It’s most likely best to simply use a variation of your name, she says. But if it’s personal, it’s okay to have a bit more fun with it. Just like a cover letter, your bio should help to clearly describe or provide an explanation for your perspective and what’s unique about you or your account.

“Don’t write anything in any of your bios that you would not want to be publicly associated with you, regardless of your privacy settings,” cautions Levine. In writing a bio, Nick says it facilitates figuring out why you want followers in the first place.

“Come up with a strategy,” he says. “You don’t want followers just for the sake of having followers.”

Related: With These Apps You Will Absolutely Rock Instagram Marketing

Make it interesting

Liam-Miscellaneous

Image credit: www.stuff.co.nz

Images you post on your account should be just as clear as your profile image, meaning high quality and unpixelated. These platforms, Levine says, emphasise strong visuals, like videos and pics. Most importantly, Levine points out that you should know why your account matters. What does it add to the conversation? “Why would someone care to read what you post?” she says.

“Add your perspective and insight, so you aren’t one of the masses just posting the headline of an article you read.”

Take @waverider_ – with 1.7 million followers, he found his niche by consistently posting his own unique content by mimicking the top celebs, such as singer Ariana Grande.

Related: Build Your Brand On Instagram By Avoiding These Common Mistakes

Be consistent

Tim-Sykes

Tim Sykes

It doesn’t matter what time of day it is or what country I’m in, I work 16-18 hours/day on @stockstotrade and @wolf_millionaire video lessons, #stockmarket commentary, watchlists, DVD guides, webinars and #stocktrading alerts too…I already have a few #millionaire students, but I want MANY more so I push myself each and every day all while living the #dreamlife so let me know if you want me to teach you what I’ve learned over the past 2 decades dedicating myself to being a #daytrader and spotter of the hottest #pennystocks WA h and every day! #ilovemyjob #iloveteaching #ilovemystudents #maldives #mondaymemories #traveladdict #travelawesome #bestvacations #wonderful_places #workfromanywhere #workhardjewhard   A photo posted by Timothy Sykes (@timothysykes) on Jun 20, 2016 at 7:17pm PDT

Levine says that “the frequency and regularity with which you post is correlated with the number of followers you have.” Posting regularly and often (daily or several times a week) enables followers to stay in regular communication with you while you offer your unique take on whatever topic you’re covering. For instance, Puff Daddy – also known as the rapper P. Diddy – posts consistently and on message (for his rapper brand, at least) and has 6.6 million followers. If you’re on the more serious end of business, take a look at entrepreneur Tim Sykes’ instagram, also regularly active; he has over 726,000 followers.

Doing the opposite – not posting regularly and having bursts of content – will most likely cost you some followers.

“Nobody wants to be suddenly inundated by a haphazard sharer,” Levine says.

Related: Doubling Your Instagram Followers in 5 Minutes Per Day

Stay focused

instagram-social-media-account

Manage your accounts

If you have multiple social media accounts linked each other so you can post automatically from one or the other, stop that practice. Levine warns that there’s been many unfortunate mistakes and mishaps from doing this, so while it may save time, it’s much better to offer your own narrative and curate content fitting to each platform.

It’s also pretty apparent that you’re automatically posting through linking because each platform is vastly different with varying styles and conversations or purposes. By posting directly, it looks better on the account and encourages followers.

“Cross-promoting content looks lazy, antisocial and ignores the conventions and social norms of each platform’s users,” she declares.

Related: 4 Social Media Tips For B2Bs

Be social

Dwayne-Johnson

Dwayne Johnson

Don’t just push out content like a machine. Create content and talk about yourself. Be conversational! Engage your followers the way movie star Dwayne Johnson – aka “The Rock” – posts inspirational videos and photos for fans on his Instagram account. He has over 55 million followers.

“It’s called social media for a reason,” Levine says. “Ask questions. Comment. Reply. Favourite. Like.”

By actually conversing with your followers, you encourage them to come back, to keep following and even share material from your account. Nick suggests giveaways or contests online as beneficial ways to interact. “It’s incredibly important to engage,” he says. “By commenting and reaching out, users are showing interest in you.”

Related: 4 Ways To Protect Your Digital Personal Brand

Be yourself

Liz-Eswein

Liz Eswein

Me, by @itsneilb.   A photo posted by newyorkcity (@newyorkcity) on Jan 21, 2016 at 12:04pm PST

Nothing is better than being your true self on social media. By embracing her voice and life in the big city, Liz Eswein, creator and curator of the @newyorkcity account, was able to become a millionaire and start her own media management business.

Nick’s account @MillionaireLifestyle got started, for example, because of his passion for cars which eventually transformed into an opportunity to showcase the millionaire lifestyle itself. Though he, himself, is not a millionaire, the Instagram guru is getting there – and has experienced luxurious adventures of millionaires because of his ability to tune in and capture the lifestyle – like when he posted an Uber helicopter ride in Dubai.

Levine says most users online are able to tell pretty easily if you’re not being authentic (like certain emoji-happy politicians).

“Authenticity is huge,” she says. “Post in a way that’s conversational. Add your perspective. Share the value you add to a conversation. And have fun.”

Related: 7 Social Media Marketing Secrets No Marketer Wants To Admit

This article was originally posted here on Entrepreneur.com.

Next Slideshow: 10 Successful SA Women Entrepreneurs’ Top Advice On Balancing Work And Family

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Personal Finance

(Infographic) The Financial Advice Millennials And Gen Zers Want To Know

Having a grasp on your financials is tricky, but it’s crucial if you want to be successful. And that starts with getting the right advice.

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Whether it’s saving for retirement or paying off credit card debt, money management can be a challenge. Of course, different people have different concerns – and that often comes with age. While a 60-something baby boomer might be organising their savings for retirement, your 20-something millennial might be focused on paying off student loans.

In a recent study, financial intelligence company Comet surveyed more than 1 000 people to uncover the top financial concerns of various age groups, as well as the financial advice millennials and Gen Zers want to know and what they hear instead.

Overall, saving for retirement was the top concern across all age groups, with saving for an emergency and affording monthly bills following in second and third. However, it’s no wonder these are some of the most pressing worries – according to the research, 23 percent of people admit they don’t have a savings account, and 43 percent reported not being on track towards their retirement goals. Perhaps that’s because they didn’t hear the right advice growing up. At least that might be the case for Gen Zers and millennials.

According to the research, these young people want to learn things such as how the stock market works, how to manage an investment portfolio, how to invest in real estate and how to build credit. Instead, they’re simply told how to create a budget, save for retirement and pay credit card bills in full every month.

Related: 7 Critical Things Your Financial Advisor Must Meet

Having a grasp on your financials is tricky, but it’s crucial if you want to be successful and comfortable. To learn more, check out Comet’s infographic below.

1532099434_2-cents-worth-infographic

Related: Financial Wellness Coach Nelisiwe Masango Shares Retirement Wealth Advice

This article was originally posted here on Entrepreneur.com.

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Personal Finance

14 Ways To Make Quick Cash On The Side

If you need money quickly, here are some solid ideas.

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Need to make some fast money on the side, whether it’s to pay off a credit card or to make your rent?

Keep in mind, making quick side cash isn’t about making a lot of money or getting rich. It’s about getting a shot of capital to help tide you over and put something extra in your pocket. However, some of these side-income ideas can build up your wealth over time. There’s many ways to accomplish this: By participating in the gig economy, the sharing economy, online sales networks, passive income techniques and more.

If you’re looking to make extra money in a relatively short period of time, check out these 14 slides.

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Personal Finance

Take Advantage Of Financial Democracy Made Possible By The New Stock Exchanges

Why should financial democracy matter to entrepreneurs?

Etienne Nel

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Because it creates a society able to afford products and services. Without it, even the innovative products and services that are entrepreneurs’ bread and butter will fail.

What is financial democracy, exactly?

It’s both the right and the ability of the (wo)man in the street and business people to make the decisions that affect their financial circumstances.

Financial democracy does not automatically follow political democracy. For almost 25 years after South Africa’s political transformation, the exclusiveness of our financial markets continued to deprive the vast majority of South Africans of the means to invest, save, and build wealth. South Africa has, therefore, never developed a retail stock exchange environment. So, it has deprived the majority of small and medium sized business of access to capital.

For entrepreneurs to truly flourish, they need a mechanism that easily and seamlessly connects the investor pool with every size of business. And, they need affordable ways to enter both the retail and institutional market.

In short, they need stock exchanges. Ones on which listing takes weeks rather than years, doesn’t break the bank for listing fees, and provides the shortest route to the largest possible potential investor base.

That’s not been possible in the stock exchange monopoly that existed for six decades. Now, it is.

What’s changed?

We now have four new stock exchanges. The resulting competitive environment will significantly reduce the cost of listing – and the cost for investors of buying and selling shares.

Instead of restricting share trading to people or organisations who already have tens of thousands of rands to invest or millions to spend on listing, by licensing four new stock exchanges, the Financial Services Conduct Authority (FSCA, formerly the FSB) has recognised that most financial decisions do not call for high levels of education.

Related: The Role Of Foreign Exchange In The Economy

Most people know how to spend their own grocery money. Most know that it’s better to keep their R1 000 monthly income in a coffee jar than spend R50 of it on bank account fees. People who can barely read and write are immensely skillful at manipulating air time deals to their advantage.

There is significant financial savvy in all social strata.

In the same way, although the mechanics of bookkeeping and accounting may be unfamiliar territory to many entrepreneurs, most have a clear understanding of the difference between profit and loss.

The FSCA has therefore enabled democratisation of the financial markets by enabling the broadest possible spectrum of entrepreneurs and investors to use stock exchanges to participate in and contribute to the economy – on their own rather than prescriptive terms.

How do you take strategic advantage of this democratisation?

  1. Base your business strategy on people’s instinct for making decisions in their own best interests. Trust financial decentralisation, such as one sees in crowd funding and in digital environments such as block chain, where people would far rather trust one another than institutions and governments. This is democracy innately at work in the financial environment and it’s accelerating organically as digital technologies give people more means and the confidence to help themselves – to information and opportunities. Ride the wave.
  2. Tap into people’s desire to innovate. Consumer organisations have proved that letting people interactively help them develop products is a powerful growth engine. Apply the principle by letting people grow your business by buying shares in it, giving you capital and themselves a platform on which to build wealth.
  3. Remember, the ultimate loyalty reward is equity.

Your financial democracy business plan

Look to list on an entrepreneurial stock exchange; one that was founded by entrepreneurs on entrepreneurial principles.

That means: A stock exchange that is already built on financial democracy and decentralisation. One that has, at its core, a single operational concept that keeps things simple for you, automatically gives you an immediate competitive advantage, and, ensures that no matter what your business needs in terms of attracting capital, the exchange can provide all the options in the same, consistent way.

What does such an exchange look like?

It has fintech capabilities. So:

It slashes your listing costs. It achieves this, among other things, by enabling you to populate an electronic prospectus, demonstrating your financial viability, and self publish.

It gives you control by having the granularity and agility to impose relevant governance right down to the individual investor. You get to decide the types and quantities of investors you want to attract. This also enables you to achieve black economic empowerment in perpetuity.

It leads the world by clearing and settling trades in T+0. No-one in the value chain has to hold large sums of money for days following a transaction. Small transactions become profitable. Investors don’t have to risk their life savings on a single large trade. A retail market is opened. An investment and savings culture is entrenched. The economy expands. Your business grows steadily.

It enables anywhere, any time trading via a mobile app that allows investors to see share value in real time. See economy expansion point above.

It integrates processes and procedures, simplifying them and ensuring rapid onboarding of issuers and, therefore, speed to market with new concepts and alignment with the digital economy.

It operates a principles-based regime. So:

It treats you, as an executive, with respect. It’s not prescriptive. It does not insist on excessive oversight, allowing the Companies Act to guide you to sustainability.

It does not attempt to squeeze your company into a pre-defined business or listings format. It recognises and works with your uniqueness.

It obviates the need for expensive specialist listings advisors.

It focuses on financial inclusion and access. So:

Shares can be bought and sold for no more than R1 000. See economy building point above.

Related: 27 Of The Richest People In South Africa

The new world of stock exchanges is integrated, synergistic, holistic, organic, self-fulfilling

Decentralisation of financial control, democratisation of opportunity leads to a whole new economy. One in which, for instance, a taxi operator can finance a minibus through a company in which his purchase gives him shares. A single purchase gives him two benefits: a vehicle on which to found his business and a longer-term investment in shares that he can trade. The funding company gains liquidity through access to a wider base of investors while being able to control who buys and sells and the conditions on which trading takes place. Increasing black equity in business becomes an organic, natural, self-perpetuating process.

Everyone wins in a decentralised, democratised financial market. And it’s the stock exchanges that drive the process.

As an entrepreneur, can you afford to ignore the acceleration that listing could give your business growth?

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