Yeah, I’m talking about those influencers who have built their careers around a sense of relatability.
Influencers who, as more and more people connect with them and who they are, they start changing, ever so slowly, to reflect their new-found popularity. And, eventually, they wind up becoming so far removed from where they started their careers that they no longer have the qualities about their personalities that people gravitated towards in the first place.
At one point in time, you were relatable. At one point in time, I felt like you were just like me. But, these days I see you in your multi-million dollar homes, or $5,000 a month apartments, driving around your multiple $80,000 dollar cars and consistently telling us that we need to click your referral links, buy your crappy brand collaborations and give you money because you’re ‘just like us’ and I can’t help but think of how far removed you are from the reality that most of us experience, that you’re really not relatable to any of us anymore.
Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with making money and there’s nothing wrong with finding success.
My issue is with the fact that, as you jet off to various exotic locations on holiday’s you’re not paying for, you claim to be one of us. You claim to understand what we go through. My problem is that, as you dip your finger in that $85 dollar lip balm that you’re telling us all to buy, you don’t even know how much it costs… because you don’t have to buy it yourself, you get it given to you.
There’s nothing wrong with making a lot of money. There’s nothing wrong with getting gifts. But I’d like you to remember that the majority of us, we don’t get these gifts and we certainly don’t have $85 dollars to spend on a single lip balm. Nor do we have the funds available to jet around the world and stay at these lavish hotels you’re vacationing at, that we know you aren’t paying for.
I appreciate the game, I do. And I am happy for you for finding the success that you have. I just don’t think that you understand, the very people who are the reason for your success in the first place are the very people you seem to be alienating these days. It’s clear that the money has changed you. And while we all evolve in life (yes, all of us evolve), pretending you’re still the same person you always were, while sitting in that million dollar mansion, it’s rather transparent. Pretending that nothing has changed and acting as though we, the viewers, don’t know any better really belittles the intelligence of your audience.
We see you peddling products in a sponsored video only to never be seen or acknowledged ever again. We see you blurring out the logo on your car as to not show what kind of vehicle you drive. We see you promoting sustainability to us whilst leading a life of over-consumption and materialism. So what is it? What’s the message you’re trying to promote her? Do as I say not as I do?
My advice to you: embrace who you are. Stop trying to pretend you’re the same old soul we fell in love with. Because you’re not. And that’s okay. Perhaps, if you embrace this newfound wealth and popularity and stop trying to ‘pull the wool over our eyes’, everyone could be happier. You could find a new audience, an audience that embraces your wealth and privilege, and stop treating your ‘die-hard OG Subscribers’ like they’re idiots. Because that’s what you’re doing. Trying to pretend you’re your regular old self is a lie. And when you lie to your subscribers, you’re treating them like idiots.
My further advice… be more conscious. Conscious of your footprint. Conscious of your over-consumption. Conscious of the fact that aren’t who you once were. Conscious of the fact that, you’re not always going to be liked.
Also, be humble. Be grateful. You literally got where you are off the support of others. So please stop acting like you’re god’s gift to youtube. Because without all of those people who watched supported you, you wouldn’t have a dime. So please stop saying ‘I don’t owe you anything’. Because when you really break it down – you do owe your viewers. This beautiful life you’re leading is because of them.
I recently watched a video on youtube in which someone, I’m sure you all know the name of, bought every pumpkin in a pumpkin patch to fill his back yard with pumpkins so that his family members didn’t have to go all the way to the pumpkin patch to pick a pumpkin for Halloween.
Cute, right? Totally cute. Egregious, over-the-top and completely unnecessary? Abso-fucking-lutely. Considering they only ended up using four of the pumpkins, what did they do with the rest? Did they give them to neighbours? Did they donate them? Did they send them back to the pumpkin patch so that people in his area didn’t have to go to the pumpkin patch to find out there weren’t any there? We don’t know. Because they don’t tell us. They simply flex their wealth and opulence and then end the video… because they don’t ‘owe anyone anything’.
All I’m saying is, acknowledge that you’re not the person you once were. Acknowledge that the eight vehicles in your garage are because you lead a really privileged life, and that not everyone gets to live that way. Stop trying to pretend you’re a regular ‘folk’ when you believe it’s appropriate to ‘try and keep us believing’.
Please note that while I’ve only given one specific example of a youtuber in this post, that is not my picking on them, it was just for example’s sake. Really, I believe this applies to A LOT of people who make their living being an ‘Influencer’.