- Netflix / The American Meme
- The Netflix documentary “The American Meme” shows how social-media stars and influencers live their lives.
- Stars including DJ Khalid, Emily Ratajkowski, Josh Ostrovsky, and Hailey Baldwin talk about how they make their money.
- They say they rely on ad revenue and brand deals.
- They’re told to post a picture on their social-media accounts with a product saying how much they like it and encouraging others to buy it.
- Hailey Baldwin says she made $150,000 from a single post.
- Some people have made millions.
When ad revenue isn’t enough, social-media stars look to brand deals to make the big bucks. In the new Netflix documentary “The American Meme,” celebrities including DJ Khalid, Emily Ratajkowski, Josh “The Fat Jew” Ostrovsky, and Hailey Baldwin talk about how they make their money.
A brand deal is when an influencer posts a picture on their social-media account showing a product, saying how much they like it, and encouraging others to buy it.
“I post a lot of things that I genuinely just like, and I’ve gotten in trouble with my agent being like, ‘Why would you post this? You can get paid for doing this!'” Baldwin – who now goes by Hailey Bieber on Instagram since marrying pop star Justin Bieber – said in the documentary.
“The most I have made off of a single post is $150,000,” she said. “I’ve heard of people making $1 million off of one photo.”
Brittany Furlan, who became popular on Vine, said she’s been approached by companies including Procter & Gamble, Benefit Cosmetics, and Pizza Hut.
YouTube influencer Amanda Cerny said she has a flat rate for her brand deals.
“There’s deals in the millions on social media,” she said. “When the TV is on, usually people walk away for commercials. And then in our videos, we have millions of people who are seeing this content.
“My rate on Instagram is $50,000 currently for a post.”
Matthew Felker, a model who isn’t active on social media, explained how brand deals work.
“Someone like The Fat Jew, he’ll get written a check from the shoe company,” he said. “And then he will be told, at 11 o’clock on Thursday morning you need to post a picture of yourself sitting at this pool with your feet up, with these shoes on. You need to use these hashtags, post it at this time, and that’s a quote unquote ‘organic post.'”
Posing for photos with the intent of showing off products or a certain lifestyle can backfire.
Last year, a lifestyle blogger received death threats after posting a photo of “pancakes” that were actually tortilla wraps.