Instagram influencers' sponcon deals dry up in the face of pandemic
Coronavirus kills #sponcon: Instagram influencers say they’re going to lose out on hundreds of thousands of dollars as brand partnerships dry up in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic
- Social media influencers are being hit financially by coronavirus
- They make their income through brand partnerships and sponsored posts
- Several have said that they are getting fewer deals and brands aren’t renegotiating contracts
- One who makes $500,000 a year hasn’t shared a sponsored post in a month
- Some have also complained that they now have to do their own hair and makeup and shoot their own photos due to shelter-at-home policies
- Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?
Countless industries are being hit by the coronavirus pandemic, with a skyrocketing number of Americans losing their jobs.
But while some of the suffering industries are obvious — restaurants, bars, travel, sports, gambling, movie theaters, retail, automakers, gyms — it turns out that Instagram influencers, too, are losing most, if not all, of their income.
Several of these social media stars, who rely on brand partnerships to fund their lavish lifestyles, are suddenly seeing all of their offers dry up — and while they’re still posting glamorous photos to entertain followers, they have shared that they are now having to do it all on their own, even sorting their own hair and makeup, whereas before they’d all in professionals to glam them up.
Money honey: Countless industries are being hit by the coronavirus pandemic — and even influencers are hurting
Tough: Abigail Ratchford, who has nine million followers on Instagram, said she usually makes $500,000 a year from sponsored posts, but deals are drying up
DIY: California’s ‘Safer at Home’ order means she can’t pay makeup artists, hair stylists, and photographers to help her with pictures — so anything she posts, she has to do herself
Three influencers spoke to TMZ this week about how their lucrative careers have taken a dramatic dip since the pandemic dominated headlines and lives.
Abigail Ratchford is one of them. She has nine million followers on Instagram, a number that usually commands big bucks from brands who want her to promote their products.
She usually makes $500,000 a year from sponsored posts, but it looks like that number is going to drop for 2020.
Though she said she still has some deals in the works, her last sponsored post was for Fashion Nova back on February 18.
What’s more, she complained that California’s ‘Safer at Home’ order means she can no longer pay makeup artists, hair stylists, and professional photographers to come over and help her with her pictures — so anything she posts, she has to do herself.
That includes a short video of herself in a black bikini top and a Louis Vuitton-branded face mask.
Meanwhile, Ella Rose — who has 811,000 Instagram followers and a baby with the NFL’s Julian Edelman — told TMZ she has had no new ad inquiries for a week.
Usually, she gets several a day.
Ella, who lives in LA, can also no longer hire photographers to shoot her photos and has to do it herself.
Yet another popular influencer, who remained anonymous, told the site that several brands want to wait until April to renegotiate contracts.
Plus, some brands that have already set up sponsored posts with her have asked her not to post just yet, because the products are made in China.
Sticking to savings: Desiree Schlotz said that she’s also lost work, and some companies are delaying payments
Home? She also complained that it’s difficult to produce interesting content when you can’t leave your house — but she’s been posting photos from Antigua
Finally, Desiree Schlotz told TMZ that she’s also lost work, and some companies are delaying payments.
She also complained that it’s difficult to produce interesting content when you can’t leave your house.
Interestingly enough, though, she does seem to have left home.
While she spent some of March posting photos from her bedroom, bathroom, and parking garage, she has most recently shared images and video from Antigua.
‘Wouldn’t wanna quarantine myself anywhere else,’ she wrote, filming herself on a terrace overlooking the beach.
Staying home: Travel influencers, like Mel Vandersluis, from Canada, are halting their trips due to the coronavirus outbreak
‘A lot of people are in panic mode,’ Mel Vandersluis said
Travel influencers have also taken a financial hit since the pandemic began. In late February, before any US cities or states has begun banning large gatherings and closing business, several travel influencers told Business Insider that they were already putting trips on hold.
‘A lot of people are in panic mode,’ Canadian influencer Mel Vandersluis, who has 186,000 Instagram followers, said. ‘Some press trips have went to a halt, some have been cancelled. They obviously don’t want influencers to contract the virus while on the trip.’
Other influencers were preemptively cancelling plans, including influencer couple Stefan Arestis and Sebastien Chaneac, who call themselves the Nomadic Boys and have 122,000 Instagram followers.
Even before it was cancelled, the pair planned to stay home from a big LGBTQ travel and tourism conference in Italy this year.
Better safe than sorry: Travel influencer couple Stefan Arestis and Sebastien Chaneac, who call themselves the Nomadic Boys, decided to stay home from a major conference
On hold: UK resident Becky van Dijk , who has 105,000 Instagram followers, has postponed a move from the US
Then there were others who are worried that if they traveled, their countries wouldn’t let them return home, and they’d be stuck in quarantine.
UK resident Becky van Dijk, who has 105,000 Instagram followers, is one of them. She’d been planning to move to the US soon, but has now paused the move for the foreseeable future.
‘I don’t want to risk being quarantined. It’s just not worth it,’ added Johnny Jet, who has nearly 30,000 Instagram followers and a travel website.
Some influencers were slower to cancel their travel plans, and used the opportunity to allay fears and share safe travel tips.
Why worry? However, some influencers are using the opportunity to allay fears and share safe travel tips
‘If you keep listening to the news that’s trying to scare you, you’re not going to go anywhere,’ said Alyssa Ramos said
‘If you keep listening to the news that’s trying to scare you, you’re not going to go anywhere,’ said Alyssa Ramos of My Life’s a Travel Movie, who has 214,000 Instagram followers.
‘Followers ask me questions about if they should cancel their plans. I get very angry about it because I want people to travel,’ she told Business Insider.
Writing on Instagram, she added: ‘I’ve been traveling full time for over 7 years, including during the last couple “dangerous disease outbreaks.”‘
She thinks the news is ‘100 per cent fear mongering everyone, and infecting you with fear at a faster rate than the virus is spreading,’ and added that there is a high recovery rate for those who have contracted the disease.
‘I’m not scared of getting the actual virus…I’m worried about the chaos the hysteria is causing,’ she said on March 12 — and even pointed out that flights are cheap right now.
Eventually, though, even Alyssa was forced to self-isolate in Barcelona.
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