Being a social media influencer can be a lucrative career. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: Social media is changing the way brands advertise and every now and then there are sponsored content popping up on everyone’s newsfeeds on Instagram or Facebook.

Thanks to the so-called “influencers,” companies are now able to market their products differently, and their options are no longer just limited to paying millions of dollars to popular icons or celebrities to appear in a few-second video.

They can simply “collaborate” with someone who has a considerable number of followers on social media platforms and promote their products. Ultimately, each mention of a brand name is considered an ad placement.

But how much money do these people get every time they mention a product in their post, blog or video?

According to the latest data, influencers based in the UAE now command an average price of $1,000 to $5,000 (Dh3,600 to Dh18,300) per post.

At least, that’s how much the majority (94 per cent) of the influencers charge. But a small number, 5 per cent , perhaps those with a much bigger follower base, charge between Dh3,600 and Dh36,000 ($10,000) per post.

These figures were released on Sunday by BPG Orange, which recently analysed brand’s and consumer’s perception of social media influencers.

Those polled for the study also justified the hefty price tag, citing that making a post or content on social media can take time, especially when they’re creating a video, and they also incur personal expenses in the process.

However, not all of them charge at least $1,000 in every Tweet or Instagram post. About 76 per cent of the influencers said they have accepted payment through free products or experiences, while 66 per cent said they charged per post or video.

And that’s not a lot compared to how much popular celebrities are charging these days per Tweet or IG mention.

According to the 2018 Instagram Rich List compiled by Hopper HQ, Kylie Jenner charges $1million per post, while Selena Gomez and Cristiano Rolando expects to get paid $800,000 and $750,000, respectively per post.

Recently, the UAE has taken steps to regulate the influencer marketing sphere. Early this year, the National Media Council (NMC) asked influencers to register with the government and outlined a list of fees that may be applicable to social media users and bloggers who are promoting brands online.

According to the official list of fees, those who promote a brand through their websites and other social media accounts are required to pay Dh15,000. The fee is good only for one year and renewable at the same rate.

But it’s not all about the money. Many of today’s influencers didn’t choose to start a blog, video or post regularly on Instagram in order to get rich.

In fact, 67 per cent of those in the UAE said they were inspired to make an “impact and drive real change in consumer behaviour and attitude” in the UAE. Only a small number, 16 per cent, said they decided to become social media personalities because they wanted to grow their online popularity, while 11 per cent admitted they did it for financial gain.

“I didn’t plan to become a social media influencer – it just happened by itself. As the organic following started to grow, I felt compelled to be able to make a positive impact and inspire people to make healthier, informed and more self-confident changes. It should never be about ego, popularity or financial gain,” said one influencer.