Hi, and welcome to this week’s Influencer Dashboard newsletter!
This is Amanda Perelli, and I’ll be briefing you on what’s new in the business of influencers and creators.
First up, I got the scoop this week on changes happening within the world of YouTuber merch.
The prominent YouTube merchandise company Mad Merch is switching its strategy and cutting some influencer clients. Mad Merch has worked with top influencers like James Charles and Liza Koshy in developing branded merchandise like T-shirts and other accessories.
Now Mad Merch is shifting its focus to “select mega influencers” and retail stores, versus selling directly to consumers. In the past, Mad Merch has successfully sold influencer merchandise in stores like Target for clients like JoJo Siwa.
I spoke to Faizan Bakali, president and chief operating officer of Mad Merch’s parent company, Mad Engine (a top supplier for licensed apparel), who confirmed the change. Read the full post here.
Business-savvy artists are using TikTok as a marketing tool to drive sales and attract commissions.
My colleague Dan Whateley spoke to four artists — Annie Morcos, Elizabeth Nigro, Bree Eral, and Alexandria Bishop — on how they have leveraged the app to generate thousands of dollars in new sales on the e-commerce platform Etsy.
Art-themed videos perform well to TikTok, with the hashtag #art appearing in 38 billion video streams and #artist driving 9.6 billion views to date.
“It’s really changed my little art world,” said Morcos, a graphic artist and animator. “I focus on TikTok now more than anywhere else.”
How influencers can make money on LinkedIn, according to a creator who has worked with brands like Adobe and PayPal on sponsored posts
Yes, LinkedIn influencers exist and can make real money.
I talked to Roberto Blake, who got his start on YouTube but has also worked with brands like Adobe and PayPal for sponsored LinkedIn posts.
Brand sponsorships are a top revenue stream for many social-media creators, but influencers often don’t think of LinkedIn as one of the platforms they can make money on.
Blake said he charges around $1,000 per sponsored post or article on LinkedIn, and any creator whose content is focused on career development, business, or an industry niche can potentially use the platform to earn cash.
What else happened this week on BI Prime:
How much influencers get paid for sponsored posts on average with 41,000, 500,000, and over 1 million followers: Dan spoke to Marie Mostad, who cofounded the influencer marketplace Inzpire.me, which has a database of 12,000 creators. Mostad broke down how much influencers earn for a sponsored post, which depends on their follower count and the quality of their content.
- A 22-year-old beauty YouTuber explains the main ways she makes money, from a merchandise line to a makeup palette with Tarte Cosmetics: I spoke to beauty influencer Adelaine Morin, who has over 2 million subscribers on YouTube. Morin detailed her multiple revenue streams and explained why creators shouldn’t just focus on YouTube.
We want to hear from you!
- Dan and I are seeking nominations for the top influencers and online creators in New York. We want to hear from you on which New York influencers have the most creative content and the biggest impact on platforms like YouTube, Instagram, TikTok, and Snapchat. You can submit your ideas here, or email your nominations to: email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.
- And we are launching a new power list of the top PR agents in the influencer and creator industry. Let us know which PR pros are indispensable to their social-media influencer and creator clients across YouTube, Instagram, TikTok, and more by submitting your ideas here, or by emailing your nominations to the same addresses above.
This week, I’m highlighting Tomi Obebe, who runs the travel and lifestyle blog and Instagram page, GoodTomiCha (19,000 followers).
Obebe shared a few quick tips on how to calculate true influencer engagement (such as likes, comments, saves, and shares) on social media.
“Engagement metrics are important because it helps determine how much the audience resonates and enjoys the content being shared,” she said. “The higher the engagement rate, the higher influencers can charge for partnerships.”
Here are her tips on how to spot real (and fake) engagement on social media:
- An average engagement rate is between 1% and 3% for influencers, with most rates dropping every 100,000 followers or so.
- Some websites like Social Blade, Phlanx, and Fohr will measure your engagement rate for you.
- Red flags: If every photo has the same amount of engagement (likes and comments), or if the rate calculated isn’t believable (for example, account with 3,000 followers with 1,000 likes and 700 comments).
- Look at the comments left on an Instagram post. If they are all one word comments like “nice!,” “great photo!,” or a single emoji, there’s a high chance the influencer is participating in an engagement booster.
Send tips or feedback to me at email@example.com.
Here’s what else we’re reading:
- A Thorn in YouTube’s Side Digs In Even Deeper: Kevin Roose, from The New York Times, wrote about Carlos Maza, a video producer who called YouTube “deeply unethical and reckless,” and how he is trying to bolster the video site’s left wing.
A Twitter ‘bug’ led to the address of an Arizona high school trending on the platform ‘for hours.’ What else could go wrong?: Paige Leskin, from Business Insider, reported on how multiple Twitter users discovered in December that their “trends for you” tab included the address of a high school in Scottsdale, Arizona, although fewer than 50 tweets using the address appeared recently on the platform.
- Tana Mongeau’s authenticity is the secret to her skyrocketing career, but she’ll probably never date anyone in the spotlight again: Lindsay Dodgson, from Insider, spoke to Tana Mongeau about her influencer career and how she has learned to take care of her mental health.