[Influencers] Affiliate Marketing For Instagram

Last updated May 16, 2019

Instagram used to be the 5th largest social media website on the Internet. However, its user base grew to 1 billion this 2019. And this doesn’t only pertain to accounts but to active users. Think about it. If you can promote your product to this market, you have a chance of getting a slice of that traffic and converting some into sales.


Also, Instagram has a highly engaged community. Unlike other social media platforms, Instagram users are usually focused on the platform when they use it. Like Facebook, IG users check their feeds everyday making it a great platform for generating engagements.

Selling on Instagram has also grown. The best thing about it is that you can post your products right away. You don’t need to worry about providing excellent customer support or shopping cart abandonment. You can sell on Instagram and let them contact you via direct message.

So if you are looking for ways to promote your products or your affiliate program, Instagram is the way to go. Companies such as Hunting Bow Lab have reported a 30% increase in sales after starting an affiliate program.In this article, you’ll learn some strategies on how you can get Instagram influencers to promote your products or affiliate program for you.

Here are some tips on how to market to influencers on Instagram.

DM is Your Friend

If you are planning to do influencer marketing on Instagram, you need to remember that the direct message button is your friend. Not only can it help you to instantly reach influencers, you can be assured that your message will be seen as well. Unlike Facebook messenger that have message requests and email where you have no way of knowing if the influencer read your message, Instagram direct messages are different. This is because your message will often reach the influencer instantly and you get to see if they have seen your message.

The easiest way to approach influencers on Instagram is to talk to them. It doesn’t need to be a message that asks them to promote something. You can comment on their content and tell them what you like about this. This helps you build a relationship with the influencer before you ask for anything.

Instagram’s direct message feature is an amazing platform for reaching your target influencers. It is all about utilizing this so that you can reach them.

Create a Limited Time Discount Code

Customers love discounts. This is because they get to buy an item at a fraction of the cost. But it is not just the customers that benefit from discounts. Influencers love them as well.

Here’s how you can make a simple discount code attractive to an influencer. You just need to include their brand in it. Influencers love this discount code because they get to promote your brand while also show that they are working with you. And if they love your brand or have bought from your before, they will be more than willing to promote your brand.

What will make a discount code more special if it is implemented for a limited time. This means that the discount codes can only be used until a specific date. This will trigger the sense of urgency and will encourage the influencer’s followers to act fast.

Try Influencer Contests

Another trend that you will observe in Instagram is influencer contests. These are the contests where you are asked to follow a brand or a group of brands as well as like a photo and comment on it tagging your friends. This is a contest that is quite popular in Instagram for it encourages authentic engagements as well as increase followers in such a short time.

Fortunately, holding a contest is easy. You can contact an influencer via direct message to present your idea. You can provide the prizes and all they need to do is promote your brand. If you want to get more traffic and triple your chances of getting an influencer on board, you can contact multiple influencers at the same time. This way, they also get some exposure from other influencers in the industry. This is more attractive than a contest with a free prize.

As you can see, it is all about looking for a way to work with influencers in a way that is beneficial for them. It is important that you focus on the needs of the influencer and not your own. You have to give them a reason to promote your brand to their followers.  

Join Influencer Events

An indirect promotion on Instagram is done through Influencer events. This is done by sponsoring an event and inviting multiple influencers in one industry. This way, the event paves the way for them to see each other and network. When the event is happening, you’ll see influencers taking pictures of the event and sharing it on Instagram. Eventually, they will tag you (the sponsor) and thank you for the opportunity.

With an influencer event, you give influencers a reason to promote you. You are not asking them to promote your products for free. Instead you are giving them something for free. And if they end up enjoying themselves and sharing their experience with their followers, then that’s better. Again, it is not about forcing influencers to promote you. It is about giving them something to talk about when they promote you.

Create Promos in Your Stories

The Instagram news feed is not the only place where you can promote products. You can also do it in stories. I see some ecommerce websites create limited-time 24-hour promos in their Instagram stories. I find this to be quite effective for they manage to catch their most loyal followers and give them limited-time discounts.

What makes IG story promos attractive is the time element. Unlike other types of promos where you broadcast it and everyone has a chance to avail it, IG story promos are exclusive and is only good while it lasts. This triggers the sense of urgency as well as the fear of missing out. What happens when you combine these two together? You’ll find that the customer will take action faster than ever before.

Collaborate on Content

Influencers are called as such because of their power to connect people. Not only do they connect their followers with products and services, they also connect with each other to power their industry. Collaboration acts like a connecting thread for influencers. It is when they create content together that they truly shine.

So where are you in this equation? Well, influencers are open to working with brands if you ask them. As long as your product and service resonates with their interests and beliefs, they will be happy to promote it. But more than product reviews, aim to go another mile and create content with them. You can do this by recording an image, video, podcast or commercial with them. This will give them something that is worth sharing on Instagram. In this world where content is everywhere, it is important to create content that will stand out from the crowd. And you can only do that with collaboration and creativity.  

Collaborate on Products

Collaboration is not limited to content. You can do it on products as well. If you create your own products, it will help to get an influencer to create a product design with you. It will give them something unique to do and to talk about and it will give them a reason to promote you.

It is important to promote your offer to an influencer who has an interest in your product. It doesn’t need to be a direct interest. For example, a fitness influencer can create clothes as well. But the influencer should be interested in the product before you give them your offer.

A good example is Ava Clothing. They worked with Tricia Gosingtian, a fashion influencer. Tricia assisted the brand in the aesthetics of a collection before it was released. When they released it, Tricia informed all her followers and friends in the industry. Almost all of the pieces sold out because of that.

Look for Micro-Influencers

Instagram is a home for micro-influencers. These are people who may or may not have a blog or another social channel but they have around 1,000 to 10,000 followers. On the surface, these influencer may seem that they don’t have a lot to offer. But if you look closely, you’ll find that they get authentic likes and comments which makes them good promoters of your products and services.

Why should you target micro-influencers? Well, if you have tried contacting another influencer with 100,000 to 1,000,000 followers, you’ll find that it can be quite cumbersome to work with them. Not only do most of them ignore your messages, they may also have higher demands when you ask them to work with you. But with micro-influencers, it’s different. These people are just starting out. So if you tell them that you will send your products for their review, they will be happy to do so. Often, you don’t even need to pay them for the review. A free product is often enough to encourage them to review you.

The strength of micro-influencer marketing is in the numbers. Sure, it may seem like one micro-influencer may not be able to boost your website traffic by a lot but if you get 10 micro-influencers to promote you, the numbers will get higher. It is incredibly easy to get an micro-influencer to promote you so getting many of them on board won’t hurt.


Another form of promotion on Instagram is SFS or shout for shout. This is a cross promotion scheme implemented by online shops so that they can promote each other. So what they do is they work with multiple brands. Then they post photos of their products in exchange for a post in their timeline.

The products may or may not be in the same niche. The only key is that they promote each other and get as many people into their accounts as possible. Many brands do this on a regular basis. After posting their products, they would often post 9 to 15 photos of other brands. After that, they will delete the posts in 24 hours.

You can use SFS for affiliate marketing. This is where you ask online stores to promote you. In exchange, they will get a portion of the earnings when they manage to convert some of their customers. Although direct affiliate linking is not possible on Instagram. That doesn’t mean that affiliate marketing cannot be done. They just need to be more transparent with their followers.

Try Tribe Marketing

When a brand called Foreo released its skin improvement device in the market, several celebrities posted reviews of it. Some of them can be seen as a photo on Instagram while others are seen in Instagram stories. But what made it more intriguing is that all of these are posted at the same time. This is an example of Tribe marketing. This is where you promote one type of product to a group of influencers and you ask them to review the product and post about it all at the same time. This is very effective for the follower who is active in the industry will see the promotion multiple times. This will encourage them to check out the product and buy.

NOTE: The influencers in the group must belong to the same niche for this to work. Customers must see the promotion multiple times for this form of promotion to be effective. According to studies, customers have to see your advertisement at least 9 times before they act on it. Tribe marketing makes it easy for your prospects to see your brand multiple times on Instagram through multiple influencer promotions.

As you can see, marketing to influencers on Instagram is not that hard. You just need to know how to give them a good reason to promote you. Influencers are looking for ways to better serve their followers. They are looking for interesting stories to share. So if you can provide that, they will have a strong reason to promote your brand for you.

giles thomas


Hi, I’m Giles Thomas. Founder of AcquireConvert, the place where ecommerce entrepreneurs & businesses go to learn how to increase conversions & profits. I’m also the founder of ecommerce growth agency Whole Design Studios. I’m a head marketing mentor at the Google Launchpad Accelerator & Google Marketing Expert. Ps. Check out my new blog RisePro.co


3 Responses or Pingbacks

  1. Website Designer Karachi says:

    Nice I also like Shopify Website

  2. Marcus Ollison says:

    I love instagram for promotions and branding, It seems eccomerce it a bit saturated.

Speak your mind