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to think the lifestyle of an influencer is precarious?

12 replies

WeirdArchitecture · 28/04/2021 14:45

Im not really into social media much, but I do follow a few hiking instagrams and stuff related to outdoors.

I am also not all that well up on how it all works, but I noticed yesterday a very popular outdoors lifestyle blogger had announced going fully self employed, taking off into their dream lifestyle (new home, place, etc) due to their online success.
By 'self employed' they refer to sponsored stuff and representing brands.

This entails exposing a great deal of their lives to the interwebz daily, which might be just as good a job as any, but the pressure to be permanently supplying content would make my head explode!

Now, this person doesn't have a marketable skill as such, doesn't write or create art or anything that could be regarded as an asset - just a ton of followers and photo's.

If this was me, I would shit myself. I am self employed as an illustrator of 20 years and it has it's ups and downs, and whilst I also have a fall-back plan I do still sometimes get scared of things going south Grin

Do you think the influencer lifestyle is precarious? Possibly a bit more than my own, perhaps, but maybe worth it if only for a while? I guess they can pull in a good deal of money in a short time, but having been there and done that (art), it doesn't have a fixed trajectory.

Perhaps as a culture we are going to become more acclimatised to accepting fluidity in our lives, as opposed to the old 'job for life' era we grew up's fascinating.

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CuriousSeal · 28/04/2021 14:58

I don't think an influencer's life is particularly precarious compared to an freelancer - as long as they're smart. In terms of assets, I'd say that their asset is their audience and reach. The bigger the audience the more valuable their asset.

As long as they continue to produce valuable content (their service) then they will continue to grow their audience. They must also adapt and respond to social media trends and get on new platforms that are suited to their audience. That's no different than an illustrator keeping up to date with the latest programs, brushes and design trends though.

I think influencers are hated by most that aren't into social media as the term is associated with airhead types that will promote anything that they're approached with. It's not the case with the most popular influencers out there though. Many will happily turn down sponsored work if it doesn't suit their audience or isn't in line with their world view/ethics. I've worked with enough influencers to know that they can be very professional. Not all influencers are particularly public with their personal life either...


MedusasBadHairDay · 28/04/2021 15:00

I think it depends on whether they are working in a niche area where they have some degree of knowledge/experience or if they are working in an area where youth and novelty are the most marketable features - in which case its going to be very precarious


minniemomo · 28/04/2021 15:05

Yes precarious but it's their choice. Just like modelling, entertainment etc


Brogues · 28/04/2021 15:10

I think it depends on their niche and how fickle/intolerant the audience for that niche is. I’ve seen a couple of instamummies implode due to racist comments and let’s face it there are plenty more instamummies lined up to take their place. I’d guess hiking is a little less of a volatile market.


sashagabadon · 28/04/2021 15:12

I used to think that but don’t anymore when I see the very young women my daughter likes to watch on YouTube buying million pound houses in London by posting a few nonsense videos twice a week for about a year. They are still unknown really so can live their lives with minimal hassle from the public. Lucky them! And if they stop being an “ influencer” next week well they are still only 20, have a million pound house and can go to uni and get a job like the rest of their peer group.


SemiFeralDalek · 28/04/2021 15:12

No more precarious than other self employed/freelancer. More public of a fall if they fuck up, perhaps.


Radio4Rocks · 28/04/2021 15:14

I can't think of a more pointless, exploitative occupation. Except professional celebrity in the awful lifestyle shows..


Lostinthewilderness · 28/04/2021 15:20

Well I suppose you need to stay relevant..... I know a (wannabe) InstaMum & have no idea what she will post about once her kids are no longer small & cute.....

I post a lot about my hobby & get a lot of follow requests but I only accept people I know as followers as I don’t want the whole world looking at photos of my kid/house etc


WeirdArchitecture · 28/04/2021 15:37

really interesting thoughts, thanks everyone.

it's probably down to personal mindset, then. The thought of having to keep up a public discourse every day would send me nuts, but I agree this has much in common with freelancing and many other traditional job roles.

I do think a lot of the popularity I can see is based on some sort of lifestyle 'envy' factor, which is quite unlike traditional jobs....

my own work is precarious but in a different way. I don't have to share my personal daily pursuits to an audience or my home, pets, kids, etc.

the person I mention is clever and full of life, but I do sense the following, which is vast, is more about envy and adulation than anything else.
but yeh, I guess if there's a hole in the market, people gonna fill it!

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JudgeJ · 28/04/2021 15:58

An 'infliuencer's' lifestyle can't be precarious enough, maybe if they got a real job it would be less so. I seriously don't understand people who are 'influenced' by this type of self-centred promoter.


WeirdArchitecture · 28/04/2021 16:17


An 'infliuencer's' lifestyle can't be precarious enough, maybe if they got a real job it would be less so. I seriously don't understand people who are 'influenced' by this type of self-centred promoter.

what is a 'real' job though?
One that guarantees security, I suppose, but is anything certain?

Im totally with you regarding the followers. I like looking at stuff on occasion but the sheer amount of devotees to accounts like these often puzzles me. I'd feel bit odd watching some stranger's life everyday, what they eat, where they walk the dog, etc. I can't think what I'd get out of it, unless I was interested in emulating or copying it.

I think people maybe see something that they 'want to be' in it. A sort of idealised self?
This outdoor blogger would seem to have the perfect lifestyle if you're into that sort of thing. There's the lovely house, the perfect dog, the perfectly perfect boyfriend, the endless fun and open spaces. And this would have become even more precious since lockdowns.

So I think some of it captures people's sense of a desire to escape, but a lot of it is obviously about adulation and envy. Perhaps the influencers inspire people to change (on the positive side) and make them feel even lousier about their real lives (on the negative).
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Fairyliz · 28/04/2021 19:49

I think all jobs are precarious now. My DC’s are on temporary contracts as are most of their friends.
When I started working in local government 40 plus years ago my dad was really pleased as it was a ‘job for life’. Unfortunately that’s not the case now with constant reorganisations and subsequent redundancies.

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