How to Convert Social Media Followers Into Paying Customers

Influencer marketing is growing as we speak and has become a popular way to promote things like products, brands, and services. In fact, it’s likely you have purchased something at some point (or at least searched to learn more about it) due to this type of marketing.

Social media (e.g. Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube) is the main avenue through which influencers make their money. Brand deals, sponsored posts, and affiliate marketing are a few popular ways to gain income as an influencer. But what happens if your social media platform suddenly disappears, and you lose all of your followers?

It’s important to convert your followers into paying customers and take full control of the content you produce. One way to do this is by creating a membership site, where you can manage exactly how your content looks, the price, your business structure, and more.

In this guide, we’ll help you determine what to sell, decide how to sell it, and launch your membership site.

Determine what to sell

If you aren’t quite sure exactly what to sell, don’t be discouraged. There are endless ways to sell your content, and we’ve listed a few ideas below.

  • Content library

    Neatly organize exclusive digital content like videos, tutorials, templates, images, downloadable guides, and printable worksheets.

  • Paid community

    Provide a private space where your followers can interact with one another and develop a more intentional relationship with you than they could via social media.

  • Virtual workshops

    Teach your followers something valuable — social media hacks, tips and tricks related to your niche, and hosting a live Q&A are just a few examples, but the options are endless! You can also repurpose recordings of your virtual workshops to create an online course.

  • Access to giveaways, meetups, etc.

    Offer special access to giveaways, meetups, merchandise, and more specifically dedicated to your paying members.

  • Email list or newsletter

    Send members exclusive updates, promo codes, premier access to new content, and more via a consistent email blast tailor-made for your audience.

  • Private podcast

    Have a lot on your mind? Channel those thoughts into various podcast episodes.

  • Blog, digital magazine, or ebook

    If you have trouble keeping your social media captions below the character limit, create a space where you can write out everything you have to say with no limits.

Overall, you want to sell something that compliments your current platform and content. In doing so, you’ll add extra value to your followers which is a great way to establish a good rapport with others and ultimately gain their trust.   

Regardless of what you choose to sell on your membership site, MemberSpace offers the tools you’ll need to easily set up and manage your content and members. With various security options, you can be sure your valuable content is protected from website visitors who have not joined your membership.

Restrict access for non-paying customers
Restrict access for non-paying customers

Decide how to sell your content

Once you establish what you plan to sell, you’ll need to decide how you’re going to sell it. What you’re selling and how to sell it go hand-in-hand. And MemberSpace offers various options so you can choose how to grant access to your members-only content.

  • Recurring payments (e.g. subscription)

    Charge your members an ongoing fee for access to your membership content. This option may help to prevent a “grab-and-go” mentality and, instead, keep your followers engaged on an ongoing basis.

  • Multiple payments (e.g. installments)

    Have members pay a specific number of installments over a certain period of time. This is a great option for breaking down pricier products, services, etc. into more feasible payments.

  • One-time payment

    Charge a one-time fee for access to content. This works well for one-off products and services like templates, guides, trainings, etc.

  • Free access

    I know you’re probably thinking, “I thought we were talking about monetizing content” — and you’re right! But it may be helpful to provide free access to certain things from time-to-time in an effort to add even more value to your members and even give them a little surprise (like a freebie for the holidays).
Charge your social media followers
Choose how to charge your social media followers

With a tool like MemberSpace, you can offer more than one option for access to your content. For example, you could create a one-time payment plan for those who may want to pay a large sum upfront (for a year’s worth of membership content, etc.) in addition to a multiple-payment or recurring payment plan where members can pay smaller amounts over a longer period of time.

Launch your membership site

Regardless of the content you produce (videos, recipes, photography presets, etc.) and how you decide to sell it, a great way to build out your membership site and grant access to that content is by making your own website. With website builders like Squarespace, Webflow, Wix, and more, you can quickly and easily build a website using a customizable template. And in addition to creating standard website pages (or even just a simple homepage), you can create additional pages where you add your exclusive members-only content.

By creating your own website and using a tool like MemberSpace to protect your exclusive members-only content, you’ll have full control over the design, branding, customer experience, communication, and so much more.

Customize your paying customer experience
Customize your paying customer experience
Send customizable emails to followers
Send customizable emails to your followers

The main idea here is to funnel your social media followers to your membership site. In doing so, you’ll minimize the risk of losing your supporters while also utilizing the content you create to build a scalable income.

Understand why you should monetize content

You may be thinking, “Social media is working just fine for me. Why would I go through the trouble of creating a membership structure?” This is a valid thought, and starting up something new can seem confusing, overwhelming, and a bit unnecessary. However, let me reassure you that the idea here is to build something that compliments your existing platform and audience. You’re simply taking the next step to build a small business around the community and following you already have. In doing so, you’ll reap a few awesome benefits that come with starting up your own membership site.

One of the main purposes for starting a membership site is to take full control of your followers. With the social media world constantly changing, there’s no need to spend time stressing over what could happen if you were to lose your social media account and followers. Account hacking is a huge factor and unfortunately impacts thousands of people each day. By turning your followers into customers, you’ll still have access to them in the event your account is compromised. And if you use a tool like MemberSpace to manage access to your content, you can easily export a list of your customers (aka followers) and their contact info at any time.

Export followers and customers
Export your followers and customers

What is an influencer?

Put simply, an influencer is any person who has the ability to influence potential buyers of a product or service by promoting them via social media. Influencers hone in on a specific niche and aim to build a large online following of others who also take interest in that same topic.

A few examples of influencer topics include lifestyle, fitness, beauty, photography, entertainment (comedy, dancing, etc.), cooking, and more. While influencers can make money by simply posting content after gaining a specific number of followers, the best way to generate a substantial income is by promoting other brands, products, and services — as we mentioned above.

Making money by promoting other businesses is great. However, it’s also smart to think about ways you can monetize your own content and turn your followers into paying customers. Creating your own membership site is one of the best ways to accomplish this because it gives you full control over every detail of your membership.

No matter what you choose to sell and how you decide to sell it, continually offering new content is a great way to keep followers engaged. Whatever you have to offer is valuable, and the presentation doesn’t always have to be perfect. So don’t get stuck trying to fine-tune your ideas to the point where you neglect sharing new content altogether.

Keep in mind that your members decided to follow you on social media for a reason. By creating a membership site, you can turn all of your existing and new content and ideas into a scalable business. Social media is a beneficial way to grow a following and to make yourself known. Now, it’s time to turn those followers into paying customers.

Learn more about how to start a membership site in 4 easy steps →

Regardless of what you decide to sell and how you choose to monetize your expertise, MemberSpace’s team of experts and flexible membership software can provide you with the tools you need to succeed. Learn more and get started today for free!


How do I convert followers to buyers on Instagram?

Creating a membership is a great way to convert Instagram followers to paying customers. Starting a private community, sharing behind-the-scenes footage, hosting exclusive events, selling merchandise, and providing educational resources are a few great ideas for monetizing your expertise and providing more value to paying members.

How much does 10k Instagram followers make?

The amount of money you can make on Instagram not only depends on how many followers you have but on how many of your followers are actually engaging with your content. Sometimes, people will buy followers simply to increase their follower count. However, if your followers aren’t actually engaging with your content, they’re not providing you much value.

Overall, even if you have a ton of engaging followers, you won’t make much simply by posting alone. Most influencer income is generated through brand deals, sponsored posts, and affiliate marketing. By going a step further and monetizing your own content with an exclusive membership, you can generate a sustainable income and have full control over your followers and content.