Social media is one of the most influential developments in history. It has the ability to make people look and dress a certain way, buy products they wouldn’t normally need, and even pick up habits they never saw themselves doing before. What better way to have an influence over someone than to post beautiful pictures to a large following? Instagram is no different.
This is one of the reasons why Instagram is one of the biggest influential apps available. Because users can see what other people are doing and posting, it makes it hard to not take notice of every picture. Young people tend to be the most easily influenced due to their brains still developing. Users between the ages of 18 and 24 make up 75 percent of all Instagram users. Long story short, influencers make a huge impact.
The job of an Influencer
What does an influencer even do, you may be asking? Influencers are Instagram users who have an established credibility and audience; who can persuade others by virtue of their trustworthiness and authenticity. Your brand’s influencers are users that employ your brand hashtag who have the largest number of followers. This means that people like Cristiano Ronaldo (@cristiano, 177M followers), Ariana Grande (@arianagrande, 160M followers), Selena Gomez (@selenagomez, 154M followers), Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson (@therock, 151M followers), and Kylie Jenner (@kyliejenner, 142M followers) have some of the biggest followings on Instagram, which companies can use them to reach a large scale audience.
Breaking down the numbers
Even though the people who already have a lot of followers are typically wealthy, that doesn’t mean they don’t get paid when companies ask them to make posts. Though she is ranked sixth on the 2019 Instagram Rich List, Kylie Jenner gets paid the most when she posts a sponsored ad, coming in at a whopping $1,266,000. Ariana Grande and Cristiano Ronaldo come in behind her, with Grande making $996,000 and Ronaldo making $975,000. Priyanka Chopra (@priyankachopra, 43.4M followers) is ranked 20th in followers worldwide, but still makes up to $271,000 per sponsored post. The more followers you have, the more money can be made on Instagram.
A company often seen being advertised by young female celebrities is Sugar Bear Hair (@sugarbearhair, 2.4M followers). According to their Instagram bio, they promise the healthiest hair by eating “the blue bear!” With a vegetarian, cruelty-free, and delicious gummy, it remains the #1 hair gummy since 2016. The likes of Kylie Jenner, Vanessa Hudgens, and Kim Kardashian are all promoters of the product.
Companies using celebrities to endorse their products really works. People will pay $29.99 for a single month’s use of Sugar Bear Hair products plus a shipping fee (it’s strictly an online store), when there are similar products that cost less than $10 at stores like Wal-Mart, Target, and Walgreens right down the street from where you live. Sugar Bear Hair products are cute, tasty, and promoted by people we know and respect. This is why people are more willing to buy those products than the easy-to-access affordable ones.
If we look at Cristiano Ronaldo’s profile, at the top of many of his posts it says “Paid Partnership with CR7cristianoronaldo.” This is the name of his official brand and website, where he sells clothing products such as footwear, underwear, and denim, as well as a newsletter regarding all things Ronaldo exists. Every time he makes a post on his personal Instagram (@cristiano) that has to do with CR7, he tags the brand in the photo, and the “paid partnership” logo appears on top. So not only is this promoting his own brand, but he also gets paid just to post about it. When you combine the total of that alone plus his salary as a professional athlete, the sum is quite high. Not to mention the number of bonuses he receives from various soccer competitions, different advertising campaigns, and appearances he makes.
Social media pays off
As it turns out, social media pays off on either end of the spectrum. Influencers like Kylie Jenner, Cristiano Ronaldo, Kim Kardashian, Priyanka Chopra, and so many others can profit greatly off of one single post. Of course, the more followers you have, the more money one can make. Even those with less than 100,000 followers still make a pretty penny for clicking a few buttons on an app.
On the other side of that, companies make a heap of money when they use celebrities to endorse their products. As we noted with Sugar Bear Hair, they have a following of 2.4M people. The prices are ridiculous and don’t even have to maintain a tangible store thanks to the online emporium they created.
Everyone wins in this game. From the results we’ve seen thus far, we can expect to see many more paid partnerships with workout gear, hair gummies, and underwear ads for years to come.