LONDON: UK marketers are willing to pay celebrity influencers on Facebook up to £75,000 for a single post mentioning the brand they want to promote, a new survey has revealed.

They are also prepared to pay celebrity influencers £67,000 for each YouTube video that mentions their brand, while key influencers on Snapchat can expect to be paid as much as £53,000 per Snap.

Yet despite these huge sums, Rakuten Marketing’s survey of 200 UK marketers, who work directly on influencer campaigns, found surprisingly few are sure they help to drive sales.

Nearly nine in ten (86%) of marketers acknowledge they are not entirely sure how influencer fees are calculated, while 38% cannot tell whether a particular campaign drives sales.

There is similar uncertainty about micro-influencers – those with up to 10,000 followers – because only a fifth (20%) of marketers claim they are able to demonstrate the impact of influencers through indirectly influenced sales.

Despite these findings, three-quarters (75%) of respondents still expect their spending on such influencer campaigns to rise over the next year and over a third (35%) expect their budget allocation to increase by more than 50%.

“Influencer marketing can be hugely effective but marketers are commissioning expensive posts without understanding the real impact on the purchase journey,” said James Collins, Rakuten Marketing’s SVP/MD of Global Attribution.

“It’s essential that marketers question influencer fees and use attribution tools to measure the effect of this activity in order to create strong, value-driven relationships between brands and influencers,” he added.

Rakuten Marketing also explored the relationship between marketers and influencers and found 59% of marketers reporting that influencers will take guidance about best practice.

But only about a third (29%) believe the influencers they work with are entirely concerned whether their content drives sales for the brand, while just 20% say influencers are prepared to follow their lead when it comes to guidance about billing.

And when it comes to what would encourage them to invest more in an influencer programme, half (50%) point to greater transparency and better reporting of the influencer’s contribution.

Data sourced from Rakuten Marketing; additional content by WARC staff