What was your top tune of the year? ‘Easy on Me’, ‘Life of the Party’, or how about ‘Happier Than Ever’? Whatever your favorite genre, 2021 was a vintage year for great music with the likes of Adele, Kanye West, and Billie Eilish serving up a collection of instant classics.
2021 was also the year then Instagram really came to the fore. By year-end, the photo-based social network had more than one billion users around the world according to the researchers at HootSuite. They also found that 81% of people use Instagram to research products and services and that 50% of users have visited a website to make a purchase after seeing something on Instagram.
The music and social media elements combine in the latest research from the US online casinos gaming review site which looks at how much artists’ Instagram net worth sponsored post value increased in 2021 when they had a song in the Billboard chart.
The Purpose of the Study
The aim of the study is to show just what an impact having a hit song can have on the value of a sponsored post on Instagram for the artists involved. In some cases, an IG post can more than triple in value if the artist hits it out of the park with a smash hit song.
The research team focussed on nine huge 2021 hits from some of the world’s biggest and best-known artists. You can see them below.
- Olivia Rodrigo – ‘Drivers License’
- Justin Bieber – ‘Peaches’
- Cardi B – ‘Up’
- Dua Lipa – ‘Levitating’
- Doja Cat – ‘Best Friend’
- Ariana Grande – ‘Positions’
- Bad Bunny – ‘Dákiti’
- Taylor Swift – ‘Willow’
- The Weeknd – ‘Blinding Lights’
What We Got Out of the Data
How much do celebrities get paid? Crunching the numbers, researchers were able to estimate the earnings of an Instagram post when a song was in its peak position in the Billboard charts. They then estimated the extra song revenue artists could expect with the Instagram-sponsored posts.
The music revenue combined with the Instagram revenue gives an estimated total song revenue.
The total figure for Instagram revenue assumes the artist uploaded 2 sponsored posts per month during the period the song was in the charts.
Key Findings Instagram Net Worth – Ariana Grande Tops the List
- Ariana Grande would have an estimated value of $1.4 million with IG posts if she was to post two ads a month, a rise of 12% from the time prior to the release of ‘Positions’
- Justin Bieber’s ‘Peaches’ was on the chart for 4 months and that was enough to bring an estimated 10% increase in value to the Canadian’s Instagram posts.
- ‘Drivers License’ by Olivia Rodrigo delivered the highest influence recognition, taking her IG follows from 750 to over 21 million and boosting the value of her posts by over 300%.
- Instagram sponsored posts would have the highest impact on total song revenues for Taylor Swift.
- Olivia Rodrigo (349%), Doja Cat (62%), and Bad Bunny (39%) had the highest estimated revenue increase per Instagram post.
We’ll now look at each of the nine songs featured in the study detail. The estimated total IG incomes shown below assume two posts per month during the time period the song was on the Billboard chart.
Positions, Ariana Grande
Estimated cost per post: $702,779
Estimated total Instagram net worth (during the 7 months period the song was on the charts): $9,838,906
Ariane Grande followed up the huge success of ‘Stuck with U’ and ‘Rain on Me’ with ‘Positions’ which went straight to the top of the Billboard charts. Prior to its release, the 28-year old’s IG-sponsored posts were valued at $627,240. With the song in the Billboard charts, the value of these posts had risen to $702,779.
The song reached the top 10 in 30 countries and was streamed over 35 million times in the week of its release in the US alone and was her fifth Billboard chart-topper. After shifting over 2 million units, the song was declared double platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America. Grande was also nominated for the Best Pop Solo Performance at the 64th Annual Grammy Awards.
Peaches, Justin Bieber
Estimated cost per post: $487,528
Estimated total Instagram net worth (during the 4 months period the song was on the charts): $4,589,536
‘Peaches’ was Bieber’s seventh number 1 Billboard hit and proved a smash across the world. It also provided a big boost to the Canadian popster’s IG value. Prior to the release of ‘Peaches’, Bieber’s Instagram posts were valued at $447,747. Following a strong chart run, their value had increased by 10% to $487,528.
With the release of ‘Peaches’ Bieber became just the second male solo artist alongside Drake to have four songs go straight to the top of the Billboard charts. Bieber was also the fifth most-streamed artist in the world in 2021 according to Spotify.
Willow, Taylor Swift
Estimated cost per post: $446,660
Estimated total Instagram net worth (during the 6 months period the song was on the charts): $5,359,920
The opening track from the singer’s ninth studio album ‘Evermore’ went straight to the top of the Billboard charts to give Swift her seventh US chart-topper. Before the release of ‘Willow’, Swift’s IG posts were valued at $428,863. This figure rose by 4% to $446,660 when the song was riding high in the charts.
The total song revenue (all the streaming, sales, and licensing revenue a song generates from all sources) for ‘Willow’ excluding the value of Instagram posts, was estimated at $8,899,204. If Swift had made two IG posts a month, this total revenue would have risen to $9,792,524 which is an increase of 10%.
Swift also became the first artist to debut an album and a single at number one simultaneously more than once. She’d previously managed it with ‘Folklore’ and ‘Cardigan’ respectively. The song was also nominated for a trio of MTV Awards.
According to Spotify, Swift was the second most-streamed artist in the world in 2021.
Up, Cardi B
Estimated cost per post: $321,529
Estimated total Instagram net worth (during the 5 months period the song was on the charts): $3,215,290
After a run in the charts with the smash hit song ‘Up’, Cardi B’s sponsored IG posts were valued at $321,529, a rise of 8% on the pre-release figure of $296,885 per post.
With the success of ‘Up’, the American hip hop star became the first female rapper to top the charts with more than one solo single.
‘Up’ proved a hit with audiences and critics alike with the song taking the number 2 position on Spotify’s Best Hip Hop Songs of 2021 list.
Levitating, Dua Lipa
Estimated cost per post: $230,352
Estimated total Instagram net worth (during the 9 months period the song was on the charts): $4,150,440
‘Levitating’ marked the arrival of Dua Lipa as a hugely influential figure on Instagram. Before its release, the British star’s IG posts were valued at $166,234. This rose by 39% to $230.352 as ‘Levitating’ became a huge hit. When the song eventually dropped off the charts, the value of her IG posts remained static.
Did you know that the name ‘Dua’ means love in Albanian?
Dákiti, Bad Bunny
Estimated cost per post: $180,297
Estimated total Instagram net worth (during the 8 months period the song was on the charts): $1,442,376
Puerto Rican rapper Bad Bunny’s smash hit ‘Dakit’ went straight into the Top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100 and to the top spot on the Hot Latin Song chart on its release.
During the eight-month period that ‘Dakit’ was in the charts, the value of Bad Bunny’s IG posts increased by 16% from $155,349 to $180.297. The total song revenue, assuming two IG posts a month, would also have risen from $14,219,345 to $14,579,939.
As well as being Spotify’s most-streamed artist, Bad Bunny also entered the wrestling ring in 2021, winning a tag team match at WrestleMania 37.
Drivers License, Olivia Rodrigo
Estimated cost per post: $101,085
Estimated total Instagram net worth (during the 6 months period the song was on the charts): $1,213,020
2021 was quite the year for Olivia Rodrigo, starting with the release of the smash hit song ‘Drivers License’. The song’s enormous success meant that the value of the former Disney TV star’s Instagram posts rocketed in value by 349% from $22,514 to $101,085 which is the highest out of the nine songs featured on our list.
Rodrigo’s debut album ‘Sour’ also proved massively popular, topping the charts across the globe. It also received a nomination for the Best Album Award at the 2022 Grammys.
Blinding Lights, The Weeknd
Estimated cost per post: $98,110
Estimated total Instagram net worth (during the 19 months period the song was on the charts): $3,728,180
Appearing on the charts for an enormous 19 month ‘Blinding Lights’ was the longest-running hit on our list. It’s also the longest-charting song in the history of the Billboard Chart. While the song was on the Chart, the Toronto-born singer’s IG value rose by 14% from $86,136 to $98,110.
The 31-year-old developed a whole new legion of fans after headlining the half-time show at Super Bowl LV in February 2021. The versatile performer also co-wrote an episode of the hit TV animation ‘American Dad’.
Best Friend, Doja Cat
Estimated cost per post: $65,996
Estimated total Instagram net worth (during the 6 months period the song was on the charts): $791,952
Doja Cat’s ‘Best Friend’ generated total song revenues estimated at $54,597,038. Of the songs in the study, ‘Best Friend’ had the highest revenues outside of Instagram. With Instagram factored in, the Californian star’s total song revenue increased by just 0.24%.
Methodology and Limitations
The study collected the revenue generated by each of the nine songs across three distinct periods:
- The period before the song was released.
- The period when the song was on the Billboard chart.
- The period when the song dropped off the charts.
To calculate the value of an Instagram sponsored post, the study looked at three IG posts from each of the three-time periods, averaged out the number of likes (which were scraped directly from Instagram), then combined them with the total number of followers (using FollowerStat.com).
Researchers then used the My Social formula to calculate the price of the Instagram influencer for each of the three-time periods listed above.
The total Instagram revenue figure is calculated on the assumption that the artist uploaded two sponsored posts per month during the period that the song was in the charts.
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