So you’ve got followers, but no clients: time to turn those hashtags into cash bags. Here are a few field-tested, tried-and-true methods for transforming your fleet of fans into a steady stream of paid gigs. Be aware, however, your product must be quality for these tricks to work; Resource can’t polish your turd for you.


Unsplash/Quino Al

  1. Supply Contact Information Clearly

Surprisingly, a lot of Instagrammers fail to clearly provide a way to contact them. In a dense marketplace, it’s important to cut down the time between being noticed and being contacted–giving potential clients no time to rethink their choice. Having your email hidden amongst the underbrush of the web is no way to do this. You’ve already hooked a potential client, now reel it in, don’t make them go hunting for you.

Unsplash/Clem Onojeghuo

  1.  Include a Call to Action

Even more effective than supplying a way to contact oneself is urging visitors to contact you. In that vein, many successful accounts will have phrases like “If you like my photos, click this link to….” or, “If you like my photos, see the rest at…” This way, when someone discovers your Instagram and likes what they see, they’ll be told clearly and simply what to do next, rather than having to guess for themselves.

Unsplash/Eunice Lituanas

  1. Ask Questions

Interaction can turn potential clients into definite clients. After all, you’re much more likely to do business with someone you feel you’ve gotten to know (questions of online “authenticity” notwithstanding). So, add questions to your captions like: “Look at this great landscape I took, guess where it is,” or, “Took this portrait last week, who does it remind you of?” etc. People LOVE answering questions and giving you their two-cents, just be sure to respond back. They’ll be unwittingly taking one step closer to hiring you.

Unsplash/Glenn Carstens-Peters

  1. Comment Genuinely

A lot of users employ “likes” to gain a following: by “liking” other people’s images, it is assumed, others will notice them and “like” or follow back. However, many times a genuine comment on a post can be much more effective than liking ten or fifteen photos. As one user puts it, “otherwise it feels spammy.” So instead of attempting to spread as much stuff out there as possible, focus on making a couple meaningful comments: this is much more likely to drive engagement and genuine follows in return.


  1. Let Your Followers Behind the Scenes

As I mentioned before, people are more likely to engage in business with people they feel they “know” (hence the saying: “it’s about who you know”). Though it would be very difficult to engage with every person that follows you in a meaningful way, you can provide the same sort of feeling by letting them in on the machinations that go into your work. Some ways to do this: show them your office, show them your recreational activities, or show them how some of your most popular images came to fruition. By gaining a sneak peak, people are more likely to feel they know, and thus can trust, the person behind the work that is being displayed.

Unsplash/Ben White

  1. Deliver Value

Everyone wants to get paid for their work. A little generosity, however, can go a long way. Give your followers something for free, whether this be advice, inspiration, or sharing something funny. Get them hooked on the free goodies and then, when they want more, they’ll come to you, their supplier.

Unsplash/Estee Janssens

  1. Be Consistent

Not everyone is going to need what you have to offer RIGHT NOW. Keeping that in mind, it’s important to remain relevant so that when those moments of need do come up, your name is the first one they think of. To do so, keep your posting consistent. Whether this means two photos a day, or six photos every Wednesday, or even a photo every day besides the weekends, just make sure to keep the schedule tight. That way, when your assigned day or time comes round, they’ll be thinking of you, keeping you in the picture for that fateful day when they’re able to pay.


Best of luck. 


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