“You are living the dream”
“Your life is so fun”
“I wish I can just open packages all the time”
“How do I get to be you?”
“How did she become an influencer (blogger) when she looks average?”
Those are just some of the comments I often hear from people since I joined the life of an Influencer. Truth be told, I’ve been a blogger before blogging has evolved into the now biggest marketing channel.
I’ve been a blogger before blogging has evolved…
At the age of 14, I started blogging in all the platforms that you can possibly think of – Blogspot, Xanga, Blogger, Myspace, LiveJournal, Tumblr and if you can consider Asianavenue as a blog then let’s add that to the mix. It was different then, I had the worst blog names possible including anonymous, created content without any purpose and mostly driven by emotions. However, the technicality is similar. It’s an online community platform that provides a voice to a larger audience where I was able to customize my website and connect with other people online who I can relate to. I had my own set of blogger friends then. It was my escape and foundation of creativity. In fact, it is part of the reason why I love anything online and led me to the path of Bachelors in e-Business Marketing. From then on, reality called and I’ve moved on with my life as an adult (or also known as adulting) until I discovered it again, and transform it to a whole new level.
But the BIG question is: What is Life like as an Influencer?
IT’S A WHOLE NEW WORLD
Becoming an Influencer and understanding the importance of an Influencer are two completely different perspectives. I had a whole new appreciation of what is life like as an Influencer – it’s not about getting freebies or “living the life”, but it’s about hours it takes, the discipline to create content and to stay authentic no matter how many changes Facebook, Instagram or any other social media platform decides to come out with. It’s not for everybody! I know many people who have tried to do this because they say “how easy is it to take a photo and post it online?” or they know how to use Facebook/Twitter/Instagram? … I dare you to take a chance, learn it and do it if you are one of those folks and let me know how it goes for you.
The best Influencers does not allow the perks/freebies to define them.
Life as an Influencer involves free products, trips, stay or invitation to exclusive parties but notice how I italicize the word free? Because it isn’t. Yes, it’s a perk but it is in exchange for content, media exposure, video and/or images and most often a whole lot of SLEEP.
This is not the only basis of why we are an influencer, it’s beyond that. The best Influencers I know does not allow the perks to define them – we pick and choose what best describe us (our brand).
This life is not a 9 to 5 job, it’s 24/7. You are always on it and it’s not something you can take away. It’s not only about posting or sharing what content but it’s also about engaging, building online relationships and brand awareness, and those things take time. Truthfully even if I don’t want to be connected, I am constantly thinking about it too. Since I’ve become an Influencer, I am always thinking of what’s the next topic (do I post it or not, I still think about it) or what can I do more.
Make it a habit to disconnect – it’s not easy.
The downfall of this is the ability to disconnect. I am very guilty of that! Although, this can easily be applied to everyone – an Influencer or not. The best influencers balance their time to create content and living their normal life. Even me, I’m starting to force myself to disconnect and even more, I am starting to learn not beat myself up whenever I’m not blogging even if when my calendar says I should.
THE PRESSURE IS ON
“Bring it on!” – Yes, that’s pretty much every pep talk that an Influencer says to themselves when people doubt their capabilities. The pressure to do well in this industry is exceptionally high. You need the perfect images, the right clothing, the perfect angle, the right caption… isn’t reading that already feels like it’s a lot of pressure? The pressure mostly comes from within us and not from the other people. It’s the expectation of ourselves. Again, I’m guilty of that. How many IG posts do I have apologizing why I have disappeared or why I haven’t posted in a while? But truthfully, it’s okay or better yet, who cares. However, I have this certain expectation of myself for success and that’s what every Influencer’s biggest battle.
The pressure mostly comes from within us and not from the other people.
We all have our blog calendar, content calendar and most often not everyone gets to post on time. Our life aka adulting takes over and we forget. I’ve seen some people fall apart because of this but then majority I’ve seen rise above this.
Beyond the pressure to succeed, there is also pressure on how to show your personality and stay authentic when you are constantly amazed at all the other Influencer’s strategies. Eventually, we learn to understand, as an Influencer what is the pressure that we bring to ourselves and what isn’t. It’s a learning process.
PUBLIC PROFILE – ARE YOU HIDING SOMETHING?
Everything in your life is public. People will come up with their own conclusion, opinions, and discussions about you and YOU have to be okay with that. Funny enough, I am already an Influencer a year before we moved here on the island but I still think the public figure of me online is incomparable of living here on the island. I always say “that being an influencer, you have control of what people know about you or what you say” but on the island, they can catch you in the middle of the fight with someone or be wearing PJs in grocery stores (which by the way should be a big NO! NO! here) and come up with their own assumptions. But one thing I’ve gotten used to with the help of having an online social media life is being comfortable that people know my business even if I don’t know them or it doesn’t matter who is watching.
You have control of what people know about you…
On a bright side, we take this opportunity to be the better version of us. Being on social media always reminds me of my mom’s favourite saying when I was little “It doesn’t matter who is watching you or around you, always do the right thing.” I have nothing to hide so why be defensive about it?
YOU HAVE A VOICE – CHOOSE TO EMPOWER
We have a voice. As an Influencer, we do convey a side of perfection with our square photos on Instagram but it’s not all about that. We also use this opportunity to empower people and to use our influence using personal experiences to give advice to our followings. Other times, we use it to also receive advice from others. For example, I’ve recently gone back to eating healthy because since I moved to the island I’ve gained an extreme amount of weight in 6 months. When I shared my plans to go back to eating healthy and being more active, the majority of my followers reached out to me to give advice and motivated me to continue. Big shout out to @themnmlanml for continuous healthy motivation via Insta DMs.
One voice can empower many but imagine the impact if it’s a group of powerful voices? … This is why I’m a big advocate of collaboration.
Another example is Ideate Networking recent event, the why panel shared their own experiences to empower others to pursue their dreams and to let their individual personal and career journey inspire others. One voice can empower many but imagine the impact if it’s a group of powerful voices? This is why I am a big advocate of collaboration. I’ve never seen other Influencer as competition if anything they are a motivation. The perfect example is my relationship with Chanele from @dowelldresswell or my so called biz bestie. When we met, we both talked about launching our own blog and our plans. We could have then ended our relationship but instead, we decided to connect, build our relationship and launch a networking series to empower other women in the industry.
SO AS AN INFLUENCER…
Living life as an Influencer has its pros and cons. For me, it’s my passion, it’s part of Marketing and it’s who I am so I learned to be okay with the cons. I’d rather deal with the cons than not be an influencer. Some may argue that I am not an active influencer and at a certain point I agree BUT remember an Influencer is not measured only by the number of posts on Instagram or their blog rather by the impact on the lives of others, may this be through life choices/lifestyle, motivation, brand view and consumer products.
An Influencer is not measured only by the number of posts on Instagram or their blog rather by the impact on the lives of others…
Just like any other profession, life as an Influencer is not always magical but to most people, it’s worth every single minute. To succeed in this field, it requires passion, dedication, and motivation.
And that my friend is What life is like as an Influencer.