You see the word ‘influencer’ all over the place today. They’re usually posting photos of what they’re wearing, eating, drinking, etc. There are tons of people who are aspiring to become a full-time influencer now as well. They see these sponsored posts, free products, and ‘exclusive’ access to events, and they want in on it. However, what they don’t realize is that being an influencer isn’t as simple as posting photos and writing 150 words on a blog somewhere.
Being an influencer takes a lot of time, dedication, hard work, and authenticity. At the end of the day, most of the ones you follow have a job that supports them as well. Being an influencer is rarely a means to an end. If you really, truly aspire to be an influencer though, here’s what you need to know.
THINK OF IT AS A PASSION PROJECT
You will never achieve influencer status if you’re thinking of your social persona and channels as a means to an end. If you’re going to start up a food blog, or if you want to become the go-to-source for style, you need to do it for the sake of doing it. You need to be truly passionate about it. If you’re doing it in order to get paid, people will see right through you and have no interest in your voice because they’ll be able to tell you will say anything for a freebie or a handout
So, if you’re thinking of starting your venture because of all the cash you’ll be raking in – don’t bother. If you want to do it because you passionately believe that you’ve got something to say that’s worth sharing, buy a domain, secure your handles, and get started today.
FIND YOUR UNIQUE POINT OF VIEW
The influencer world is extremely saturated already. I’m not trying to disappoint or discourage you, but know that if you’re going to get any readership and generate interest, you’ll need to be different from all the others.
To become an influencer, your content needs to convey your outlook. However, your outlook can’t be one that can be found anywhere easily. This means you may focus on a very particular angle, specialize in a particular geography, or cover a niche topic. No matter how you do it, just remember it needs to be YOU.
BUILD YOUR COMMUNITY
“Build it and they will come” may have worked in Field Of Dreams, but that isn’t the case when it comes to becoming an influencer. It is one thing to have compelling content and an interesting POV but those aren’t enough to get you to influencer status.
Think of your community as if it was a farm; would it flourish if you just dug out the soil and tossing in the seeds? No, your farm requires tending to each day. In that regards, if you tend to your community every day, you’ll reap the benefits. Whether that means you spend 2 hours a night engaging with people on Instagram, or you send DMs to your Twitter followers, you need to pick your strategy and be consistent. Pick your social media channels strategically and focus your efforts on engaging existing fans while bringing new ones into the fold.
PUSH YOUR CONTENT
There’s nothing worse than putting out amazing content and then feeling like nothing is happening with it. But part of building influence is networking your content. Don’t let it live dormant on your blog, YouTube channel, or your Facebook. Personally reach out to people that might be interested in what you’re putting out, engage with them, express interest in what they’re doing, and share your content.
When it comes down to it, the only and best way to have influence is to earn it. That means it’s going to take time, energy, and hard work. But the connections that you’ll develop, the impact that you’ll make, and the successes you’ll enjoy will be well worth it.
So, are you ready to become an influencer?