Celebrities Are Paid How Much to Tweet?! Not at Unreal Candy.

Celebs like Khloe Kardashian and Mike Tyson are paid thousands for endorsement tweets, but Boston-based company Unreal Candy has a mission so great that it has local celebs talking—for free.


Screenshot via Unreal Candy / YouTube

It’s no secret that celebrity Twitter accounts are far more commercialized than just some daily Rob Delaney jokes and pictures of Taylor Swift’s cat. Companies and brand names are taking advantage of the celebrities on Twitter and are now paying all sorts of people—from reality caricatures to washed-out child stars—crazy amounts of dough to tweet their brand. With all the social media that we use nowadays, you’d be surprised at just how often your feed is exposed to these #hashtag #ads. Take a look:


While the rest of the Internet has been exploring this new method of advertising since the birth of Twitter itself, the Huffington Post put together a giant infographic that explains what the stars are getting paid to advertise using 140 characters. The pay range—and the people being paid—are just as crazy as you’d think.

Frankie Muniz is being paid $252 to tweet about copy.com, while Khloe Kardashian is paid well over $13,000 to mention Sugar Bear. And then some of the folks that fall in between, like Mike Tyson and Ashley Benson, are paid between $3,000-$5,200 per tweet. Sign us up, please!

Now there are even companies that exist entirely to put together social media marketing and sponsorships with brands and celebrities, such as IZEA and Adly.

While some celebs are crazy about their endorsement tweets, others are more conscious of their digital voice, according Veronique Conus, who handles celebrity relations at IZEA. When asked about some famous Boston names, Conus says that A-listers and Oscar-winners are usually more unattainable in terms of celebrity social media endorsements—Ben Affleck and Mark Wahlberg, for example. But then there are some others who may already be in a commercial or ad for a brand and might tweet about that product, say, John Krasinski, who lends his voice to Esurance commercials, or Amy Poehler, who appeared in a Best Buy commercial.

There is a very local brand, however, that seems to have a whole bunch of celebrities talking nonstop about its product—for free. Unreal Candy is a Boston-based candy company that uses natural “unjunked” ingredients with no artificial additives or high-fructose corn syrup. And it looks like these guys have their social media marketing tactics down to a simple science: make a product that people can actually get behind.

unreal candy

So while most of us are wondering what’s in it for Jersey Shore’s Sammi Sweetheart for shakin’ up some Tic Tacs, we can count on Tom Brady, Gisele Bundchen, and Matt Damon to genuinely support a brand they are associating their names with.

Watch Tom, Matt, and Gisele, plus John Legend and Twitter creator Jack Dorsey gush over their love for Unreal:

“We don’t pay people to speak about our company,” says Unreal cofounder Adam Melonas. “Every team member that comes on board, they first come for the mission, then for the business opportunity [as investors]—but that’s a faraway second. Everyone has the true first belief that [Unreal] is a game changer. We’ve been lucky to have some very good friends like Tom and Gisele spreading the word amongst their friends. It’s more of a case where people come to us and ask, how do we get involved?”

Melonas also points out that many of these big names who are behind Unreal Candy products are also parents with children. “That’s the one very simple measure of product development and how we do business: would we feed it to our children? This is something that’s near and dear to their own hearts.”

Crazy enough, Unreal Candy has some other huge investors besides Tom, Gisele, and Matt. Vinod Khosla, the cofounder of Sun Microsystems, is an investor, and—oh yes—Leonardo DiCaprio (the one and only) has also joined Team Unreal.

So while brands are hustlin’ and bustlin’ around Twitter and other social media handles to get a name to promote their brand, the most important takeaway here is to be conscious of who that name is. It’s very telling that none of us have ever seen Mark Wahlberg promote an #ad via Twitter, yet the Jersey Shore stars will advertise left and right.

So I leave you with this, folks. Would you trust a brand that ex-child star Frankie Muniz is tweeting about, or a brand with a hearty mission statement that Matt Damon can’t get enough of?

I don’t know about you, but Matt Damon will always take the cake here.