Thanks Social Media: Making Anyone Famous One Like At A Time
Thanks to pioneers like Kim K and Paris Hilton, the idea of being famous for filming mildly exciting chunks of life has been legitimized. While we ribbed them as much as we worshipped them, they ushered in an era when anyone with internet access can be renown for doing what they love, even if what they love is popping pimples (it’s too gross to link; go find it yourself). Social media award ceremonies like the upcoming E! People's Choice Awards pay homage to many types of celebrities, including ones who made their careers by using the phones. And because this is America, being famous for being, has turned into a highly lucrative and competitive business. If you too want to pull yourself up by your bootstraps and parlay your social media addiction into a career, it’s best to take notes on those already killing the game.
And who slays every damn day? Multi-hyphenate Selena Gomez adds reigning Instagram Queen to her title with 143 million followers, more than anyone. It’s part of the reason she was nominated for Social Celebrity of the Year. She told the Hollywood Reporter that her master plan is simple: “It comes in a moment when I capture something happening, and I go, 'Oh, that would be great for Instagram. I should post it”. Yeah. That’s it. It certainly helps to have been on television your whole life and look like a fashion model even in hipster uniform, but being genuine and not over selective in your posts is a lesson in Insta-success. Fellow nominees Chrissy Teigen and Taylor Swift also don’t take social media too seriously. Teigen’s candid posts and tweets are a one stop shop for beauty inspo, family goals, wit, and clapbacks even a battle rapper would envy. Taylor revealed to Tumblr that she made cringey videos of herself for the sole purpose of feeding the gif gods awesome material. So you don’t need the Disney machine to gain a large set of followers; just don’t overthink it. If all else fails, take another note from Taylor and post pictures of your cat to gain followers. Really.
If you’ve ever walked an adorable dog, you know how randos on the street smile at, and congratulate you on your wonderful life. There’s a whole set of social media stars who take that same esteem booster to the extreme. Influencers like Leslie Mosier let their pets attract views while they count the money. She has 3.6 million Instagram followers for taking embarrassingly satisfying pictures of her pet, Doug the Pug, in such enviable destinations that it could double as a travel page. But for everyone who thinks pet pics are a cheat code into social media royalty, think again. What may go unnoticed about these pet pages is the work their owners (or “pet mom/dad” if your obnoxious) pour into it. What would this Lil Bub post be without its caption? Or this one of Manny the Frenchie without an expertly scouted location? Still, if you’re more about the benjamins than actually learning, you may be able to get by with a super adorable, unique pet like Venus the Two Face Cat. She is also up for Animal Star of 2018, even though her owner knows that a cat with two faces needs no introduction. Or clever captions. Or exciting videos. Or tricks. Or storylines. It’s no secret that aesthetically pleasing pics always rise to the top, so to outshine a pretty pussy like Venus, you’ll need serious beauty skills.
It seems that everyone and their momma thinks creating a beauty channel is their ticket to social stardom (literally for Beauty Star of the Year nominees Brooklyn and Bailey and their momma CuteGirlsHairstyles), so I feel a disclaimer is necessary: please refrain from making a beauty channel if you are not a surgeon with a kabuki. If you need to gauge your skills, offer to style a friend for an event (if the friend didn’t send you snaps of at least two potential outfits, the event is not fancy enough). If when you ask they avoid eye contact, ask to practice your skills on them at home instead. No one is here for another overconfident kitchen beautician, unless you’re okay only being followed by hair weave companies and @gain10000followers.
Now that you’re able to do hair and makeup, the next step is to forget about your ability to do hair and makeup. The fact is even if you could have made Bruce look like Caitlin with just a contouring kit, there is always someone else who can do it better. The second most important tip to take from these nominated beauty stars is to find out who you are beyond beauty and capitalize on it. Beauty Star of the Year nominee BretmanRock is a master influencer as he is simultaneously handsome and pretty, but retains followers with such ridiculous videos as a hurricane fashion show (yes, there was an actual hurricane on its way). If you wouldn’t dream of posting anything that may offend people (if that’s possible anymore), then you’d be in good company with the ever wholesome nominee NikkieTutorials.
Every tutorial, every filter and every @ is a roadmap to move from user to influencer, and from influencer to award winner. It goes to show that being hot or having a dad that appeared in the trial of the century does not ensure a huge following, though it certainly doesn't hurt. It's about showing all of your facets to all of your followers. It’s about not being afraid to express an opinion, or to caption a sweet photo with an insecurity. What seems to make these stars’ social media accounts so addictive is the portal it opens into their world. Through the power of social media, you just may get invited in.