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There’s More to Being an Influencer Than Meets the Eye

Whenever I try to describe what influencers are and what they do to anyone outside of the social media industry, I find that people generally have a misconceived notion about what they actually do. Typically one of the first things that I hear is, “I should start a blog so I can get free stuff, must be nice.” I’ve found that the older generations think that if you have a blog, brands will just start sending you all kinds of free things. We all like free stuff but it’s not that easy folks.

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Being an Influencer is a Full-Time Job

Being an influencer is a lot of work, plus it’s not always the sole activity going on in their lives. I recently stumbled upon this picture about Beauty Bloggers (a.k.a Influencers) and feel this is probably very relevant to what most people think. Their lives aren’t solely comprised of packages arriving at their doors filled with products for them to write a simple loving tweet about and then they’re done. It’s not that easy.

Being an influencer is a  full time job and that’s on top of the 40 hour work week most people already put in at their regular job. Couple that with maintaining their personal social networks, it could mean hours of work after they’ve already put in a full day. Until I started my career here at Ignite Social Media, I may or may not have been one of those people that thought influencers had it easy. I used to think they goofed off on the internet all day long, received a bunch of free products and exerted minimal effort in doing so. I was so wrong. Now, I’m amazed at how many of my friends and coworkers leave work to basically go to work again as an influencer at home. They attend events on behalf of brands, they set up and partake in photo-shoots, stay up late editing videos and writing blog posts, all while I’m just sitting watching television. (Maybe a little too much television.)

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An Influencer’s Time is Well-Spent

Even if being an influencer IS their full-time job, it’s not easy people. I’m not speaking from personal experience as an influencer myself, my followings are pretty low, but from the point of view of working with influencers. There is so much research involved; just like in school they study products, read brand on-boarding documents and sometimes have to take a field trip for a social shop and that’s JUST for a product review. Other assignments may require traveling for weeks, even months at a time. And some assignments may require producing video content which could bring about hours of editing just to get that perfect final cut. It’s not all fun and games, though there’s a lot of that to be had too.

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They’re Human, Just Like You

It’s not just about having full time jobs either, keep in mind these people still have families and lives that need their attention too. They have significant others, kids, soccer games and grocery shopping to attend to; all on top of keeping up with their passions so they can continue to put out content for their blogs and social channels. The whole idea makes me tired personally, but as someone that works with these influencers day in and day out, I’m grateful (and amazed) for what they do.

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