Social Media as a Way to Earn Money
Social Media as a Way to Earn Money
  • Reporter Jeong Yoon-han
  • 승인 2016.06.01 12:25
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According to research conducted by the Korea Information Society Development Institute (KISDI), people spend an hour everyday on Social Network Services (SNS). Whereas the purpose of SNS is usually to communicate, upload pictures, kill time and so on, some use it as a way to earn money. The new trend has changed the nature of SNS.
First of all, there are advertisements that the social media companies sponsor. Facebook, for example, has some posts with “Sponsored” written on them. This means that a user, being it a company or person, has paid the social media company to make the advertisement go public. 
However, there are ways for mere users of social media to earn money for themselves. One of the ways is by gathering fans, also known as followers. The system works, for example, by a Facebook page gathering followers. Because there is a set price per every follower, the value of the page increases every time they get a new follower. The market price may differ time to time, but the average price per a single follower is about 30 KRW. It might be hard to get hold of how much it can add up to. A following of 100,000, for example, could generate 3 million KRW.
The question is why advertisers look for accounts that have a large amount of followers. Once one follows a page, it means that the follower can and must see whatever the page uploads. In other words, if a page uploads an advertisement then the followers have no choice but to come across the advertisement. Therefore, the effect of advertising increases as the number of followers of a page increases.
While some buy and sell accounts with a certain amount of followers, others have found a way to earn profits the other way around, by offering to increase followers of a certain page. The Postech Times received a mail recently offering to increase the number of followers of our Facebook page. When selling an account, the average cost per follower on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram is 40 KRW.
Once a page has sufficient followers, there are a couple of ways to earn money. The first is to sell the account itself to an advertising agency. Another is to get sponsors from advertising agencies, small businesses, etc.
There are a number of systems on how the cost of advertising is set. For instance, on a standard of an account with 200,000 fans, it costs 1 million KRW for a month’s worth of advertising. One other way the cost is set is by counting the number of likes the advertising post gets. The more likes or feedback the advertisement gets, the higher the cost goes.
This tendency has startled many social media users whether or not these profit-making methods are appropriate. One of the reasons is because there have been some incidents related to earning profits through SNS activity. Not long ago, a teenager, who learned the basic tools of hacking through the internet, was caught hacking into a Facebook account with large amount of followers and then selling it. There are lots of ways to earn profits, but it needs to stay within the law.