An Open Letter To Social Media Influencers…

Hello dear influencers,

I know that Influencer culture is quite a trend nowadays. To the people who are not influencers but are reading this just for the fun of it, I’d like to explain to them the term “social media influencer”. These are third parties who have been hired to, literally, influence consumers through the use of social media.

Seeing a rise in the number of influencers lately, I think it is necessary to point out some things that make me (someone who follows influencers and whose opinions can be changed about brands) want to not follow social media influencers.

First, I would like to mention how your viewers are pretty much always watching you (NOT in a creepy Joe Goldberg way, but in a healthy social-media-follower way). We appreciate it when you are honest with us. You share your political views and personal preferences with your viewers, which is also a great way to help generate traffic with like-minded consumers. But if your actions are mutually exclusive from your opinions, that’s when your viewers realize that you are not being genuine with them. A prominent example is influencers speaking up for the #MeToo movement but still supporting and working for alleged harassers. This very obvious cognitive dissonance really does not work well with the “woke” brand.

Second, consumers and viewers can see right through perfect posts. We all know that what we see on Instagram is most likely an ideal reality, but unreachable for the common folk. Followers and viewers find it difficult to relate to influencers who end up overdoing it. The perfectly posed posts do little for the common folk as they know that real life is anything but perfect. Being able to connect with your followers is as important as creating an aesthetically pleasing feed. But at the end of the day, I’m not the person who should criticize others for their perfect posts (something about Earth signs being their own greatest enemies).

Last, a little kindness can go a long way. And this one’s for both influencers and their followers (but mostly for followers). Often we don’t realize that the people whom we see on our phone screens are just as human as us. Everyone has their own personal autonomy and having that disrespected hurts more than anything. The least we could do is make our social media feeds friendly and safe for all folks. In these uncertain times, a bit of general human decency can go a long way. So be kind (and do not forget to hydrate)!


An Avid Follower

Zahra Rehman

Social science undergrad and amateur artist who has a soft spot for cats, dogs and philosophy.

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