Entrepreneur: Shushy Turin-Shine

Tilt: Kosher recipes ideas for the Jewish community and her enthusiastic personality

Biz: Cooking in Heels

Primary Channel: Instagram (33.4K)

Other Channels: Blog (500 subscribers)

Time to First Dollar: Two years

Pricing Growth: $50 in the beginning; now $150 per IG story w/o recipe and $450 w/  recipe

Rev Streams: Brand partnerships, sponsored blog posts, recipe development (including one consistent supermarket client), product ads, consulting for other food bloggers

Our Favorite Actionable Advice

  • Create an editorial calendar: Shushy designates days of the week for themes like experimental kitchen on Mondays and recipe sharing on Wednesdays.
  • Get it in writing: She’s been burned, so now every deal she does involves a contract.
  • Charge for reuse of your content: Brands that want to use their Instagram sponsored content on their blogs, websites, etc., pay more than the single post rate. 

The Story

Shushy Turin-Shine began posting kosher recipes to her Instagram account in 2012. She was also in nursing school. In existence only two years, Instagram wasn’t a big destination for food bloggers and brands. Still, the Instagram content creator gained many Jewish followers looking for Kosher recipes for holidays, Shabbat, and everyday dinners.  

“My dad bragged about me to his friends, and they knew who I was,” she says, explaining the moment she knew she was a success. In 2015, she expanded to a blog, Cooking in Heels, where her Instagram followers could find her recipes. That same year, her Instagram page grew exponentially – going from 8K to 20K. Today, she has 33.4K followers. Shushy, a mom of three and a full-time nurse, spends her content business time developing recipes and other food-related content.

Growing a business on Instagram

Shushy didn’t intend for her Instagram content creation to become a business. But in 2014, food brand Sabra offered to pay her $50 to create a recipe using their hummus product and advertise it on her page. Shortly after, they invited her to a conference with other recipe developers and people looking to hire recipe developers to create sponsored content. Even with her strong brand and follower count, she doesn’t plan to quit her day job any time soon. She loves her nursing job. Even so, she remains committed to publishing consistently.

Food blogger @ShushyTurin got her first #sponsoredcontent deal from @Sabra for $50. #contententrepreneur #creatoreconomy Click To Tweet

Planning an editorial calendar

Shushy shows up almost daily for her Instagram followers. She plans her content in advance and works only with brands that she’s interested in. “Be consistent. I have an experimental kitchen on Monday, ads on Tuesday, recipe sharing on Wednesday, and other things that people look forward to – kind of like episodes,” she says. “Don’t overdo it. Just show up daily.”

.@ShushyTurin schedules Cooking in Heels content with a theme for each day. #editorialplanning #creatoreconomy Click To Tweet

The Instagram content creator also encourages fellow content entrepreneurs to respond to messages. “And don’t forget to post reels and spread the love to others to make yourself more visible,” she suggests.

Negotiating with brands

Shushy followed on Sabra’s $50 per post offer for other brands early on. Today, she charges $150 per Instagram story without a recipe and $450 for one with a recipe from her.  

As @ShushyTurin grew her Cooking in Heels Instagram audience, she charged 3x more than her original fee for sponsored content posts. #contentbusiness Click To Tweet

She doesn’t take on every brand partnership. She always tries out a product before agreeing to sponsored content. “I decided to get professional contracts and price lists once I got burned too many times by companies not willing to pay or had a hard time pricing out my items,” she says.

Among the details of her contract is how the company plans to use the content. So, for example, the price is higher if the brand intends to use her Instagram recipe content on its company blog, magazine, etc.

Sometimes, clients will ask her to reduce her rate in exchange for bulk work. She evaluates the option to see if the time she takes to create that content is worth a discount. If it’s not, she doesn’t lower her rate.

As for her future plans, Shushy says she may create a cookbook.

About the author

Bonnie owns Word of Mouth, a content agency specializing in social media, content marketing, and editorial writing. She's written for Marie Claire, Harper’s Bazaar, Coveteur, Man Repeller, Health.com, and more. She loves wearing fanny packs and laying in the fetal position.