It’s the age-old question of the digital era: if you didn’t post it, did it even happen? That sentiment pretty much sums up most people’s relationships to social media today. Although we know it’s bad for us (even scientists agree that Instagram is seriously messing with our sanity), we can’t seem to stop scrolling. Despite the logical conclusion that we should just put the damn phone down, like any good addiction, we keep #doingitforthegram.
But just because the mental health community agrees that using social media isn’t doing us any favors doesn’t mean there aren’t real monetary benefits to maintaining influencer-level status on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter or Snapchat. Some of the highest-earning social media stars make upwards of $6 million annually, just by posting content online. It has us begging the question: Why shell out hundreds of thousands of dollars on college, when all you need to get rich today is a really big Instagram following?
That doesn’t mean that this get-rich-quick scheme is easy. There are plenty of struggle #influencers trying to make a name for themselves online. And just because you participated in (or even started) one of the most viral social media challenges last year, that doesn’t guarantee that you will automatically bag a Kylie-level #sponsored brand partner. It seems that you’re actually more likely to be suspended from school than become a true social media influencer. But just to make you a little more jealous of all those beautiful personalities you’ve scrolled past or clicked on, check out our list of the highest earning social media stars. These numbers are enough to make anyone contemplate quitting their jobs to start a YouTube channel.