You Won’t Believe the Crazy Money Celebrities Are Making On Instagram and Snapchat

Why do we even bother?

It shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone that celebrities with as massive a social media footprint as Kim Kardashian West regularly do sponsored Instagram posts. What may come as a depressing shock is just how much money Kanye West’s ubiquitous bride pulls in every time she blasts a new ad to her millions of followers.

The New York Times looked into issues surrounding celebrity disclosures about whether their social media posts are ads or not. It turns out that this is a thorny issue for the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), and the Kardashians—Kim and sisters Khloé, Kourtney, Kendall, and Kylie—were accused of having “dozens” of posts between them that violated a simple rule that such ads should be clearly labeled. 

Kim K. has since taken to using “#ad” in an attempt to be clear. That’s good to know, but the actual shock in the Times post is just how much a star can make on Instagram:

Captiv8, a company that connects brands to influencers, says someone with three million to seven million followers can charge, on average, $187,500 for a post on YouTube, $75,000 for a post on Instagram or Snapchat and $30,000 for a post on Twitter. For influencers with 50,000 to 500,000 followers, the average is $2,500 for YouTube, $1,000 for Instagram or Snapchat and $400 for Twitter.

The company has counted more than 200,000 Instagram posts a month since January tagged with “#ad,” “#sp” or “#sponsored” — and that does not include those that were not properly marked. Any one brand could be working with thousands of influencers, said Ms. Engle of the F.T.C., and most are not reality television stars.

At least when Kim Kardashian gets her ad dollars it’s for some kind of celebrity factor. She’s married to a huge music star and has been a staple of reality TV for years. It’s the “influencers” who aren’t stars beyond their social media presence that rankles a bit. 

That means some guy who jacked up his Twitter following to 1 million from making jokes some rock star just happened to retweet can now collect $400 for a dumb tweet sometimes. 

At least the FTC is willing to start taking a hard look at how the D through Z-listers use their reach. 

Meanwhile we’ll be over here slamming head to desk anyway, because life online is apparently just as unfair as it is everywhere else.

h/t New York Times