Influencers and content creators have come to the forefront in the past decade due to follower counts that they have. Influencers have become the preferred channel and a go-to source for marketing brands.
In India, there are big influencers on every platform including YouTube, Twitter, Instagram etc. Before TikTok was banned in India, TikTok influencers were also extremely viral with many becoming overnight superstars.
The rise of influencers also means more people in the country are making an earning online using their social media following. This also causes much intrigue in the minds of the regular social media user, as to how these creators earn a living in the first place because so much of it still remains shrouded from the public eye.
The truth is, their sources of income are often not just from a singular source and happen through multiple channels. Here, we have listed 5 of the most common ways in which influencers from India make a living online.
#1 – Monetising Their Content
A platform like YouTube allows creators to be part of their Partner Program provided they fulfil certain criteria. In the case of YouTube, a channel needs to have 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 watch hours in the past year to qualify for monetisation. Once a channel meets this criteria, they can simply link their AdSense account to their YouTube channel and start earning.
However, not all platforms provide this option. Instagram or Twitter has no monetary returns on posts you put up. A platform like Twitch, the live-streaming platform, helps the creator earn mainly through paid subscriptions. A huge chunk of this subscription amount, however, goes to Twitch itself, as a deducted commission.
In India, a lot of these issues are circumvented with creator-oriented platforms such as Rigi. Rigi allows you to monetize your content in the form of pay-to-view Locked Messages or even paid groups that require a payment amount for access.
As opposed to Twitch or YouTube or Patreon, the foreign contenders, Rigi offers automated features for creators at very less commission rates.
#2 – Paid Collaborations/Brand Deals
You might have seen your favourite YouTuber advertising products or websites or anything else in their YouTube video, perhaps with a custom coupon code of their own that helps users avail discounts. Paid collaborations have become much more commonplace in the past 5 years and are predicted to become more and more popular and convenient.
Once an influencer reaches a certain amount of followers on Instagram, they will often be approached by brand deals for collaborations. Influencers often charge a certain amount for a particular post or have a recurring collaboration with the brand. This is often a good source of income for creators and in many cases, helps them fund their own future projects.
#3 – Selling Merchandise/Products
Influencers at a certain tier earn so much that they can even be considered as a small business. In other cases, these creators themselves act as small businesses by starting an online marketplace or store on the side.
Customised products such as T-Shirts, goodies, digital products, e-books sell a lot with leverage from the influencer’s personal brand and marketing through his/her social media.
This is also another method in which influencers make money once they are established and have a certain number of followers.
If you are looking to start earning as an influencer, the first step would be to grow a loyal community who engages and interacts with your content. This is the main source from which all the above methods mentioned flourish to provide an income for the influencer.
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