Influencers, they’re just like us. Well that is, if we constantly jet around the globe for fashion week, look flawlessly candid holding a coffee, and have brands competing to pay us to mention their products on Instagram. While I can honestly say I am no influencer myself (although my 711 followers are very loyal) I am a dedicated follower of my favorite bloggers and know even the smallest details about their intriguing lives.
This may be because of my deep understanding of influencer marketing, due to my career in social media, or because I am fascinated by their ability to turn their lives into a brand. Over the years of following their careers and the ups and downs of their lives, I’ve always wondered what meeting my social media idols IRL would be like. Little did I know, I would meet my two favorite influencers this month!
Along with SomethingNavy‘s other millions follows, we get an inside look at her life through Instagram Stories. Out of the many influencers, I follow, she is one of the most active participants on the feature and posts about everything from her clothing collaboration to videos of her daughter frolicking around Madison Square Park.
I used to joke about how I would run into her one day and then I did! I bumped into her one early Sunday morning in the park she frequents with her daughter. We had a brief conversation, I said hello to her adorable daughter, and that was that.
Even more recently I ran into Hannah Bronfman at Chillhouse getting a manicure and drinking a matcha. She is one of my all-time favorite influencers as she is not only knowledgeable but built an authentic brand. She creates content she is passionate about and celebrates women empowerment and natural beauty. Despite being starstruck, I couldn’t not introduce myself! The best part? She was genuinely grateful to hear about how much I admire her and was extremely kind.
Both influencers looked exactly as they do on social media and seeing them in person felt more like running into an old friend. While many say that influencers are our new celebrities, I see it differently. Had these been celebrities, I am not sure I would have been as willing to speak with them or feel as though I was welcome to. By following each influencer for years, I have had a deep dive into their daily lives whether it be a mundane Monday or a traveling Thursday. Without recognizing it, I have built an investment and attachment to my favorite accounts and all aspects of their lives.
The relationship we have with our favorite influencers is why we rely on them to guide our purchasing decisions. It feels like a friend recommending a product or restaurant because they want to share a positive experience. As we engage with their content and build trust even promotional content feels authentic.
In reality, their job is to maintain a community and keep the followers that built their career happy. As influencers, their careers rely on engagement from followers. Whether they are participating in Instagram Story Q&A’s or simply being kind when I say I am a fan, the importance of audience awareness and appreciation is vital to creating a successful name in the influencer marketing world. As the audience and consumers, we are major contributors to content they create and success of their brand.
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