Today the world of social media seems to be at an all-time high. With people reportedly checking their phones up to 50+ times a day, social media use is continuing to rapidly grow. With the top platforms being YouTube, Facebook, Snapchat and Instagram, people with a large number of followers have either accidently or purposefully found themselves in a booming market. These people I’m referring to are social media influencers. It is the job that basically everyone wants, not only because you are sent a bunch of free stuff (think endless designer handbags and clothes), but also because you enter a landscape of endless business opportunities. Nowadays, brands are reaching out to influencers like never before in an effort to raise awareness for themselves and increase sales. A single post from an influencer can help a brand that no one has heard of become the next BIG thing. To have that much leverage is truly a crazy thing and something that companies and brands all over the world are realizing and capitalizing upon.
While there are an abundance of influencers, ranging from YouTube stars to Instagram “celebrities”, what separates big time influencers from smaller ones? As an avid follower of many famous Instagram bloggers, I have always wondered how one grows to be one of the big time influencers. Luckily, I was able to get some of my questions answered when I got to meet Cassie Freeman known for her blog, Hi Sugarplum. With an impressive Instagram following of 90.6K, in addition to followers that strictly just read her blog, I was able to find out what a big time influencer like Cassie does in a day and how she got started. How did I get to meet Cassie you might be wondering? Well, luckily I was given the opportunity to join greenlight’s director of brand experience, Alex Baker on a promotional video shoot for Inwood Village, which involved both Cassie and her adorable daughter, Sloane. While taking a break for lunch, I was able to ask Cassie about the start of her Instagram and blogging career. Not to my surprise, Cassie said that she first started Hi Sugarplum right when blogs started to become popular, making it a perfect example of right place and right time. Cassie says that she first started it as a hobby, which seems to be true for other lifestyle bloggers I follow, and then before she knew it her blog began to pick up traction and popularity. Soon, Cassie said she found herself having to fully commit her time and energy into her blog and Instagram.
Cassie is a lifestyle blogger, which means you will find her posting about outfit ideas, dinner recipes for the family, and anything in-between. One thing I asked Cassie was how she determines what to post each day, and what posts are most popular. Fashion she said always receives good feedback, partially because people can easily shop an outfit she posts by the direct links she uses, whether it’s for a whole outfit or just a piece of one. This direct linkage is a crucial part of an influencer’s income as the links they post lead to the influencer receiving a monetary percentage of the item posted if one of their followers makes a purchase. Sounds like the life of an influencer is amazing, right? Well it can be, but it can also be hectic and can take just as much or even more time than a regular 9am-5pm job. According to Cassie, a lot of time goes into coming up with content and sometimes it can feel overwhelming, especially when there is a constant pressure to keep your audience engaged. One has to have a good eye and endless amount of ideas for posts that will keep both current followers interested, but also attract new followers. This can be a difficult job; however, with it comes some amazing opportunities and business ventures. Aside from the video that Cassie was participating in for Inwood Village, she has also recently collaborated on her own Gibson x Hi Sugarplum collection, which is available at Nordstrom. Talk about an incredible business partnership! Now although I would probably love being a lifestyle blogger as much as the next girl, I think I’m much better at reading and following content than creating it, so for now I’ll stick to that.
Till next time!
-Myla (Account Service Intern)