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The rise of the InstaGirls, or Instagram-famous models, has been thoroughly chronicled, but the Financial Times offers up some interesting examples on just how a model's follower count on social media can boost her paycheck. Storm Model Management includes real-time social media statistics on each model's online portfolio right next to their heights, measurements, and shoe sizes. "We have monetized it," explains Storm's founder Sarah Doukas, who told FT, "If Cara [Delevingne] does a big campaign, you quote for her to model and then you quote separately for the fact that she has 13m followers."
Modeling agencies are setting up new divisions to help disseminate brand messages across models' personal social media channels. "This is a media space that belongs to that person — it’s an asset and if a brand wants access to that, then they have to treat it like buying media. The cost grows as the girl’s following grows," Storm's Simon Chambers said.
So do models need a certain amount of followers to get cast, as rumored? Storm's founder said that social media is a huge factor for booking talent. "The looks are obviously still first and foremost, but if you have two girls who are both perfect for something, without a shadow of a doubt the one with the [bigger] social following would win the job," Doukas told FT.
As Instagram also becomes a hunting ground for agents to scout for models and emerging talent, Storm unveiled a new app called Feels where users can upload outfit photos in hopes of being discovered. Meanwhile, brands can gather data from the app for trend research or to use the uploaded photos for editorial and commercial use.