The Ultimate Guide To Slay Being An Instagram Influencer

Instagram. This social media site began operating about nine years ago, as a platform for photography enthusiasts to share updates but in the form of pictures.

Since then, videos have been introduced; they went from being fifteen seconds long to sixty. Stories, live streaming, etc..are just a few of the multitudes Instagram has covered. Today, it has become a sort of breeding ground for “influencers.” Now, who are these Instagram influencers? They are Instagram users, just like you and me, but with a lot more followers. Through their posts, they have established credibility and a fanbase which they can influence, hence the term “influencer.” What exactly do they do? Every Instagram influencer’s journey starts with creating an account on the app, of course. But over time they gain followers and their trust. This gets them attention from independent brands looking for customers, and because of the huge follower count, these influencers get sponsored to advertise specific products. But celebrities with other non-Instagram related careers also do this, so what is the difference between an Instagram influencer and a regular celeb sponsoring a brand? So basically, Instagram influencers are the people who have made a career out of sponsored deals, becoming big enough to start their own brands and have other up and coming influencers promote them.

Pretty much everybody uses Instagram nowadays and right now, a few influencers’ names must be lingering in your head too. And you might have pondered over how you could become an influencer yourself. But it’s not that easy, with millions of users on Instagram, becoming renowned in the world of social media is no child’s play. What is the secret behind major influencers and their massive success?

I’m sure you’re all aware of the makeup and cosmetics brand Huda Beauty, renowned for its stunningly pigmented eyeshadows and iconic liquid lipstick packaging. The creator of the brand, Huda Kattan was named one of the 25 most influential people on the internet by TIME magazine in 2017. The makeup artist turned blogger turned beauty mogul was one of the pioneers of the 15-second makeup tutorials that took over Instagram a few years ago. She started her company in 2013, the first product being false lashes because she couldn’t find ones to her liking. Celebrities like Kim Kardashian took notice, and so did investors, the rest is history, and now the company is valued over $1 billion. @hudabeauty currently has 36.1 million followers, but what is the secret behind this massive empire whose roots lie in Instagram?

In an interview for CNBC Make It, Kattan said that the key to building a social media presence was what makes one unique and what brings them fulfillment. She stated that once you know what you want to be, you need to figure out your target demographic and what you want in the long run. And finally, you should never forget your identity and your values. In the interview, she mentioned three questions every aspiring influencer/businessperson should ask themselves:

  1. Who do you want to be?
  2. What is your mission?
  3.  Does this match my values?

Mainly a health and fitness blogger, Georgie Stevenson has a count of 94K subscribers on Youtube and 271K followers on Instagram. She tells in her video that to make an impact of any kind, you really just have to start and not hold back. Just like Huda Kattan, she emphasizes the point where you have to be clear about what you want to be or what your point of difference is, and why people should follow you. Stevenson says that one of the most important (and her favorite) points is that your content should have value, the posts you make should be informative in some way, giving people a genuine reason to follow you because they’re learning something new from you. Lastly, she suggests every ambitious influencer to be authentic and be their true self because after all, #nofilter is what’s trendy!

All of this will help you build a follower base that will attract brands willing to sponsor you, and from there you can skyrocket into building your own empire. Major influencers have all turned into business people because they know sponsorships on social media alone isn’t enough to pay the bills. After all, influence should be the by-product of success, not the foundation of it.

But most importantly, don’t let the haters and trolls affect you. Because the moment you react, you are feeding them. As they say, ignorance is bliss.

Again, “Social media isn’t about creating a brand; it’s about acting as if you already have one. – SXSW” (@fiercesocial on IG)

Also Read: Instagrammer’s Top 10 Fav Design Spots Around The World

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