Gary Vaynerchuk being doodled on in Snapchat by influencer Shonduras

The Fast/Slow Road to Becoming an Influencer

At this point, we all know that I’m no stranger to the concept of influencer marketing. I’m hot on it. I do it, my clients do it, and I even represent people who do it. 

So you need to understand that my exasperation comes from a very real, very informed place when people come to me (regularly) with the same question:

Gary, how do I become an influencer?

Asking “how do I become an influencer” is really no different from asking “how do I become a star?”

The really funny first answer is that you have to have talent.

The next funny answer is that you have to put in a ton of work.

These are both very cliche, basic answers, but they happen to be massive truths. I will say that the one new truth is speed of adoption within a new environment. If you play close attention to the people who popped on Vine, or the people who popped in the early days of Snapchat, or Instagram, they all happened to be the Christopher Columbus of their platforms. They were early. So as those platforms took off, they developed disproportionate amounts of followers as new users joined and found them.

So these days, it’s going to be way harder to be the next Shonduras or Fuck Jerry (even though many have), because they succeeded in the land-grabs of the early days of their platform. So if you want to be a video influencer, you can go and attack YouTube, Instagram, or Snapchat, even though they’re established markets, or you can look at it a different way. Use those platforms to hone your talents. Become an expert, and then when the next big thing in video comes out, use your new skills to jump on it and become a first-mover.

So the biggest move here, is to be a first mover on a platform I don’t even know about yet…

And then have tons of talent…

And then do a lot of hard work.

If you know someone who is chasing the dream of becoming an influencer, send them this. They’ll thank you in the long run.

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