There have been quite a few fanciful studies in recent times claiming to have estimated the amount celebrities are ‘worth’ on Instagram, based on their number of followers and how much that might be worth *if* they were doing sponsored posts – regardless of whether they are or not.
Cue ‘Celebrity X earns Y per Instagram post’ headlines in newspapers who should know better. British startup Hopper, which runs a tool for scheduling Instagram posts, is at least trying to put some more systematic thinking behind this kind of study: its ‘2018 Instagram Rich List’ is based on its own internal data and influencer rate cards, as well as “public information” (i.e. follower counts).
It claims that Kylie Jenner is the highest-paid celebrity / influencer on Instagram, capable of charging $1m per sponsored post. Musicians are prominent: Selena Gomez is second with $800k per post; Beyoncé fifth with $700k per post; and Justin Bieber seventh with $630k per post.
And yes, there’s still a big whiff of these figures being entirely notional – at this level, surely celebrities are more likely to be doing Instagram posts that tie in to wider brand deals, rather than per-post campaigns?
And not all that useful for the music industry: clever influencer marketing is more about putting together a patchwork of smaller (but still influential) social stars that fit a campaign, rather than going for the biggest celebrities on a platform like Instagram.