Social Media Influencer Rates
Top Agency Discusses Influencer Marketing Costs and How Much Influencers Make Per Post
If you’re an influencer or brand seeking influencer marketing services, you may wonder how much do influencers make for content. The answer is not a straightforward one—influencer rates depend on many factors. Our top influencer marketing specialists break down contributing components and give ballpark rates for influencer price points.
Factors Contributing to Cost Per Post
The main factors an influencer marketing agency takes into consideration when negotiating prices are:
- Influencer reach
- Influencer niche
- Engagement rate
- Types of campaigns
- Content type
Influencer Categories Based on Reach
First, it’s important to organize influencers by size. When it comes to influencer marketing, agencies typically break influencers down into five tired based on their number of followers.
Nano influencers (1k-10k followers)
Nano influencers have substantial following numbers compared to everyday people, but they have the smallest of the influencer tires. These influencers typically have anywhere from 1,000 to 10,000 followers—this number is just based on one platform, not multiple platforms combined. Nano-influencers have grown their audience base organically through engagement and authenticity. Their followers have a deep connection with the nano-influencer, which makes them ideal for many influencer marketing campaigns. Unfortunately, some nano-influencers will do sponsored posts for free or in return for free products, which has likely affected the price others in this tier can request. A nano-influencer rate can be anywhere from $20- $200 for a single post, depending on the platform.
Micro-influencers (10k-50k followers)
With a broader reach than nano-influencers, micro-influencers generally have 10,000 followers to 50,000 followers in their network. A top micro influencer still has high engagement rates and relationships with their followers, but they also have a larger audience. Micro influencer followers feel as though they know these influencers in person and deeply trust their opinions. This means increased direct response rate and high ROI when enlisting an authentic micro influencer for your campaign. If you’re wondering how much micro-influencers make per Instagram post, the range is quite broad—they can charge anywhere from $20-$1,000 per sponsored post.
Mid-Tier influencers (50k-500k followers)
Working our way up the influencer tier, we arrive at the mid-tier category. These influencers have grown their social media followings into the hundreds of thousands. They typically possess 50,000 to 500,000 followers on a single platform, giving them an extensive reach. Many of the mid-tier influencers have made a career out of being an influencer, therefore their rates are higher than the previous tiers. Despite the higher price point, using a mid-tier influencer for influencer marketing results in higher ROI. They create regular, high-quality content that their followers are eager to view. Mid-tier influencers may charge an average price of $500-$5,000 per post.
It’s important to rule out influencer fraud when it comes to working with an influencer in these higher tiers—it is not uncommon to discover fake influencers within this tier. This means that the influencer purchased followers in order to boast a high following number, yet the followers are not authentic. These bot accounts will not engage with the sponsored post or take action, therefore, campaigns with fraudulent influencers are a waste of time and money. All top influencer marketing agencies in New York thoroughly vet influencers before working with them to ensure that brands are protected from influencer fraud.
Macro influencers (500k-1M followers)
Macro-influencers have an incredibly high volume of followers on social media. These pseudo-celebrities have a significant influence when it comes to their audiences. They possess over 500,000 followers to 1,000,000 followers on a single platform. Because macro-influencers are very influential people, they often have numerous top brands request partnerships and collaborations. Macro-influencers must be careful when choosing which brands to partner with—if they post too much sponsored content, their followers may lose trust in the influencer’s recommendations. Although more income through collaborations may sound nice, if followers don’t trust an influencer, their relationship won’t serve well in an influencer marketing strategy. An influencer can lose their credibility and, ultimately, their ability to bring in funds through collaborations. After building such a large fan base, it’s no wonder macro-influencers may bring in a significant amount of money per sponsored post. You can expect to pay $10,000-$25,000 for each post by a marco-influencer with over 1 million followers.
Mega influencers or celebrities (1M+ followers)
Finally, mega-influencers are those with an exorbitant number of followers—they boast over 1,000,000 followers on each app. Some of these individuals were celebrities (actors, athletes, dancers, musical artists, culinary experts, etc.) before becoming social media influencers. In contrast, some gained celebrity status as a result of hitting over 1 million followers. One unique aspect of mega-influencers is their ability to attract a diverse following. Whereas the other influencer tiers typically have a specific target audience, various people follow mega-influencers. Mega-influencers or celebrities can charge from $10,000 up to $1 million for a sponsored post.
An influencer’s area of expertise can also affect their price per post. There are endless niches within the social media platforms, yet some of the most common are the following:
When many people think of TikTok influencers, they imagine viral dance videos. This is not an uncommon occurrence on TikTok or any of the other platforms. Both aspiring and professional dancers showcase their moves through video content on TikTok, Instagram, YouTube, and Snapchat. Some of the biggest names among dance influencers are Charli D’Amelio, Maddie Ziegler, and the Jabbawockeez.
As educational experts, science influencers have taken to social media with informational content. Their posts include simplified explanations of scientific concepts (who knew physics could be so engaging?), fun experiments, and environmental updates. Popular science influencers include Bill Nye and Physics Girl.
Athletes have long been viewed as pseudo-celebrities beyond just the sports world. These influencers impact how their followers move their bodies but also what they put in and on their bodies. Sports influencers like David Beckham are fashion icons, promoting luxury watch brands and footwear. Cristiano Ronaldo, a famous footballer, is the highest-followed person on the entire Instagram with over 273 million followers.
Everyone loves to eat, and culinary influencers love creating food-related content. These influencer’s posts consist of decadent dishes, recipes to try at home, and food preparation how-tos. Though many top food influencers have backgrounds in culinary education, some have never had formal training. Despite this, all have a passion for food that they are eager to share with followers. Some of the top food influencers have partnered with food product brands like Whole Foods or Hello Fresh, whereas some have partnerships with completely non-food-related brands.
Other types of popular influencer niches include music influencers, finance influencers, comedy influencers, and fashion influencers. Each niche has standard influencer rates.
Understandably, audience engagement contributes heavily to the price an influencer can bring in per post. This is one of the first KPIs (key performance indicators) that an influencer marketing agency measures when determining a campaign price per post. Regardless of the number of followers, if an influencer has low engagement, your ROI will likely be low. For this reason, it’s important to know an influencer’s engagement rate before agreeing on influencer rates.
What is engagement rating? An influencer’s engagement is the percentage of interactions followers have with their content compared to their following size. Any page visits, views, likes, comments, shares, saves, or live content views count as engagement. These interactions show how committed an audience is to an influencer. Those with lower engagement rates likely won’t be able to motivate their target audience to take action from a sponsored ad. An influencer agency has advanced tools dedicated to calculating engagement rate, but it is something that one can estimate as well.
To estimate engagement, follow this formula:
View the last several posts on an influencer’s social media platform. Add up all engagements—likes, comments, views, etc.—for the last several posts. Divide this number of engagements by the number of posts you used engagement values for. Then, divide the number by the influencer’s total number of followers, and finally, multiply by 100. This should give you the engagement rate as a percentage.
The higher the engagement rate, typically, the better. We say typically, but occasionally a high engagement rate could indicate influencer fraud. Some influencers pay for followers which are actually bot accounts. These fake accounts can’t engage with content like a real person would, meaning that the influencer’s engagement rate would usually be very low. This discovery was made, therefore, fake engagement was developed to counteract it. Automated tools can simulate engagement, but usually over exaggerates it, creating a very high engagement rate. Ultimately, it can be difficult to determine exactly what an influencer’s engagement rate is without the right metric analytics. Avoid these pitfalls with the help of dedicated influencer marketing specialists.
After verifying an influencer’s authenticity, an Instagram influencer marketing agency will review the true engagement rate to determine the appropriate price per post for any given campaign.
Type of Campaigns
Another contributing factor to influencer rates is the type of partnership. Some of the most popular campaign types include:
Sponsored content is one of the most common types of influencer marketing campaigns. In this type of partnership, the influencer generally creates unique content surrounding or involving the brand. Sponsored content is typically presented as any other content post on social media, yet it may involve a call to action regarding the brand. Influencers are known and loved for their creative personalities, therefore, sponsored content is presented in a similar way in order to maintain consistency. Though it is possible for brands to create content for the influencer to use (and this is generally a much cheaper option for the brand), it must be cohesive with an influencer’s image. Influencer-created content has higher production costs as part of a marketing campaign vs. pre-made content. The type you choose depends on your influencer marketing budget.
A very common strategy for elevating brand awareness, giveaways can be seen on every social media platform. In a giveaway, the Instagram influencer will host a raffle or other sort of free prize promotion for their following. Followers are typically instructed to follow the brand’s social media account, tag friends, subscribe to a newsletter, or a number of other actions. At the conclusion of the giveaway, one lucky winner is awarded a free item or compilation or items from the brand. Brand awareness and visibility is boosted through this type of promotion and the brand often leaves the campaign with many lead magnets (via subscriptions or follows). An Instagram influencer may be paid per giveaway, per post, per follow, or per direct response.
A brand may pay an influencer to simply mention their brand in content. This shoutout could be presented as an account tag, a hashtag, a product placement and mention in a video, or the reposting of brand content. Influencer rates can be based on each shoutout, though the brand could request other payment strategies like per click, per follow, or per action. For any type of sponsored post, even a shoutout, influencers must reveal that they are being paid to mention a brand. This is a regulation as set out by the FTC, Federal Trade Commission. Violation of FTC compliance by an influencer or a brand could result in penalty.
Product or Service Reviews
Followers look to influencers for recommendations; therefore, a review-type post is a common way influencer’s let their audience know what they think about a product. When an influencer reviews a product or service, they give their honest opinion. Per FTC compliance, individuals must mention whether they were provided with the product free of charge, as opposed to purchasing it on their own. The product review features the influencer explaining via a video (most commonly) or a static post what the product/service does and what the deep benefits are. The influencer will mention whether they enjoyed the product then offer viewers a call to action. The influencer’s audience may occasionally be given a discount code or special offer as part of an incentive to purchase.
Social Media Takeovers
During a social media takeout, the influencer typically takes over the brand’s social media account. The influencer traditionally lets their following know that they’ll be taking over the brand’s account, motivating the audience to follow the brand’s page. This increases the brand’s reach and visibility. Takeovers can last a few hours up to a week. Typically, an Instagram influencer will offer a discounted price or some other sort of incentive at the end of the takeover. Takeovers can motivate followers to take action and contribute to a brand’s following size. Payment for takeovers can vary—occasionally an influencer will be given an affiliate link which can allow them to be paid commission on every purchase by a follower. Alternatively, a brand could pay the influencer per purchase, per follow, or a flat rate for the takeover. The payment style usually depends on the influencer’s tier and engagement rate.
Top brands often enlist influencers as brand ambassadors. These personalities agree to long-term partnerships with the brand. The influencer marketing campaign for an ambassador may include a given number of posts each week or a desired frequency of shoutouts. Top influencers are ambassadors for brands like Nike, Hello Fresh, or Aveeno.
Some brand ambassadorships do not involve paid influencers—instead, they allow regular audiences the opportunity to become an ambassador for a brand without any payment. In return, the ambassadors get a discount on merchandise or the option of commission on products purchased through an affiliate link. This strategy can be incredibly cost-effective for brands.
Types of Content
Influencer marketing costs vary based on the type of content. Keep in mind that different platforms may support only one of a few different kinds of content. The most popular content modalities include:
Video content is incredibly popular today for many reasons. With the rise of TikTok, a video-only social media app, videos with unique transitions and effects have become the norm. The more creative, the more engaging the content is. Some people follow and find influencers solely based on their entertaining videos. Video content generally allows for higher engagement from audiences. Another thing to keep in mind is that the type of platform affects the video content—if you select TikTok for your social media marketing, videos must remain under 60 seconds. YouTube, on the other hand, can allow for several minutes up to hours of video content. Influencers can create videos for other social media marketing mediums like Instagram or Facebook. The Instagram Live feature allows influencers to interact with followers in real-time, while also saving the video content for later viewing. The influencer marketing costs vary based on the type and length of the video. More involved content creation like TikTok videos or Instagram reels which take a longer period of time, come with a higher price tag.
A picture is worth a thousand words which makes photo posts so popular. An influencer can use photo content on a variety of different social media platforms. Whether the individual you want to work with is an Instagram influencer or has a large volume of followers on other platforms, you could potentially use the content on multiple networks. This could also decrease your influencer marketing costs by only requiring the creation of one post for multiple outlets.
Podcasts are a popular form of content today, particularly with the rise of the Clubhouse platform. Influencers can use the audio-only format to accommodate shoutouts, giveaways, sponsored episodes, ads, and takeovers. In order for podcast marketing to be effective, an influencer must have a large podcast following and high engagement.
Solely written content is typically only found on platforms like Twitter and Facebook. Facebook can accommodate a large volume of written words, whereas Twitter posts must stay under 140 characters.
Though not the type of content that immediately comes to mind when thinking about influencer marketing, a blog post can be an effective form of influencer content. Written blog posts can include details on brands that social media posts may not have the opportunity to. A blog post can also be excellent for SEO and help drive traffic to a brand’s webpage. Influencers are generally paid per post for blogs. This style of content is popular amongst food influencers especially.
Consider Your Marketing Goals When Deciding on an Influencer Marketing Budget
Consider working with a dedicated influencer agency if you’re still unsure how much to budget for your social media campaign. A full-service agency has experience with numerous different campaigns and can give you a detailed range of influencer pricing. We can help you find influencers for your campaign, negotiate influencer rates, confirm content quality, then help you launch a successful digital marketing strategy. Reach out to HireInfluence to get started today.