Have you ever wondered how people get paid to post on Instagram? Well, today, we’re talking to Natalie Ellis, one of the creators and strategists behind BossBabe, a global online community of over 2 million women!
At just 28 years old, Natalie and her business partner, Danielle Canty, have built BossBabe into a multi-million dollar business in only two years.
Tell us about your entrepreneurial journey and how you got started on Instagram.
I’m a born entrepreneur. From a very young age, I loved the idea of being my own boss and knew I wanted to be an entrepreneur. My first company was an online superfood supplement line, which I scaled through Instagram marketing. Sixty countries and 200 stores later, I realized that Instagram marketing was a great way to get exposure without paying for any ads. At the time, I had no marketing budget, so it was really all organic and word of mouth.
How did you get involved in teaching others how to make money on Instagram?
Once I realized how much of a marketing tool Instagram is, I wanted to share that with the world. It’s a free way to get your product, service, or brand in front of people. I knew I wanted to teach others what I had learned through having my own business. That’s where coaching first came into play. I coached people on building their Instagram following, and people were actually seeing results. Eventually, I maxed out on how many clients I could handle and decided to create a training program (Insta Growth Accelerator) that’s accessible to everyone without me having to physically be there to talk them through it.
What do people learn in the Insta Growth Accelerator program?
You’ll learn the exact strategy we’ve used to build a global brand with over 2 million followers. Imagine waking up to hundreds of new (paying!) followers, without spending any money to acquire them. That’s what Insta Growth Accelerator teaches you. You’ll find out how to grow your audience, turn followers into paying customers and become known as an expert in your space.
What are some of the benefits of being an Instagram influencer and entrepreneur?
Complete freedom of schedule and location. I’m all about harmony. I’m still able to spend time with my family, workout, just do the things that are most important to me without having to sacrifice my business.
Another benefit is that I love getting paid to do the things I already love to do. I love that I can be my authentic self on my page, and people will resonate with it. I already love storytelling and creating content, so it’s such a huge bonus that I can also make a living off of it.
I also love building a community and connecting with people. It’s so nice to wake up to people messaging you that you inspire them and that they’re learning so much from you. I love connecting with people all over the world and getting to know people who I wouldn’t normally come across.
What kind of people make good influencers?
It’s important to have a clear brand and stick to that. If your brand is all about sustainability, but then you promote, let’s say plastic straws, it doesn’t align, and you’ll lose your audience’s trust. I’m all about the “know, like, and trust” factor. Does your audience like and trust you enough to take your advice?
Also, if you’re an introvert, you can’t be camera shy. Showing up consistently is important so your audience understands what they can expect from you.
Lastly, being vulnerable. To me, being vulnerable is one level deeper than authenticity. Last year, I shared an IGTV where I was in tears, talking about my health journey. After that, I received so much positive feedback. That’s when I gained the confidence to show up on stories and share the real and raw.
It’s OK to share the highlight reel, but people want to know that you, just like them, struggle sometimes. That’s how you’re able to build a strong connection with your audience.
How can someone increase their audience on Instagram? How many followers do you need to start making money on Instagram?
We have a full module dedicated to this in our course Insta Growth Accelerator. The best tip is to be consistent. Keep showing up, even on days when you don’t feel like it. There were so many days when I was building BossBabe, where I didn’t feel inspired, but I still posted. That’s what allowed me to grow the audience that we have today.
It’s also really important to build a community within your page, not just a fanbase. I always engage with my followers by responding and replying to their comments and DMs. I love getting to know my followers, and that allows me to better assess what type of content they want to see from me. I would also say that you need to put out good quality content. You should never post just to post. You HAVE to be strategic when posting so your audience keeps coming back for more.
To answer your second question, I believe in quality over quantity. It’s the quality of followers that’s really going to move the needle for your business. If your audience cares about what you’re selling and believes in you and your product, they’re more inclined to buy. A fanbase that wants to follow you just to see pictures won’t make you money.
As far as the average amount of money you can make on Instagram, it depends. I would just say if you keep perfecting your craft, stay consistent, remain true to yourself, and work hard, the possibilities are endless. You don’t need 10K followers to make 10K dollars. You need to invest in building the right audience, and the money will follow.
What’s the biggest mistake you see aspiring influencers make?
Again, I go back to the authenticity aspect of being an influencer. When you’re building an audience, your followers are going to expect certain types of content from you, and if you’re not meeting their expectations, you’ll end up losing them.
Is there anything else you’d like our readers to know?
Yes! That feeling lonely is completely valid and normal. I felt so lonely on my journey as an entrepreneur. That’s why I founded the Société as a place for female entrepreneurs to connect, build, and grow. I encourage you to seek out peers in your industry because entrepreneurship is a lot of work, and you’ll want to feel supported. We’re in this together!
Thanks to Natalie Ellis for sharing her success story!