Influencer marketing is one of the fastest-growing industries but it doesn’t come without challenges.
Influencers enjoy perks such as access to new products, good money, and fame, but they also have to deal with a lot of challenges, especially once they start to get popular.
Too Much Scrutiny
It will not be wrong to call influencers ‘mini celebs’ as they’re celebrated by thousands of people and some even have fan clubs dedicated to them.
If you search for some known names, you may even find articles about them on top pages. The world wants to know what their favorite influencer is up to, hence it doesn’t come as a surprise that they’re always under the scanner, even when they do not want to be.
Hope Perkins, a fashion influencer agrees and says: “the worst thing is that you are under a tiny little microscope and everyone is watching your every move”.
Everything, from your personal life to your professional choices, gets criticized, often by people who do not understand a thing about influencer marketing.
Danielle McCormick, a lifestyle influencer, believes that a lack of understanding is a major reason why this happens. “The worst is not having some people understand the concept behind what I do and judging that goes into that,” she says.
While women are more commonly under the radar, men aren’t free either and have to be answerable to their followers.
The Hate is Real
Social media trolling is real and brings massive mental challenges, and the influencer seems to always be at the receiving end.
Cyberbullying is a real problem and some influencers are already working on reducing it.
According to Statista, about 38 percent of online trolls target social media users and 23 percent stick to video-sharing platforms like YouTube.
“You get people who would want to put you down, shaming you in every possible way,” says Irene Essah while talking about the worst thing influencers have to face.
Other social media stars like Nosipho Zulu appear to agree. Zulu says that “being attacked by people on social media” is a real problem that many new and old influencers have to face.
Liv Reese, a fun-loving fashion and beauty enthusiast, raises the same concern and says that “the worst part is probably the hate you get online!”
It doesn’t matter what you do, there will always be people criticizing you. It can be quite hard to deal with trolls as they don’t just enjoy hurting others, they also tend to feel good about themselves, according to this research.
If you or someone close to you has been dealing with online trolls then have a look at our piece on How to Handle Internet Trolls for some great tips.
A Blend of Your Personal and Professional Life
Some people argue that one of the main advantages that make up for all the challenges of working as an influencer is the work-life balance it offers. However, Inshia Slatewala believes that “sometimes it’s very difficult to keep professional and personal lives separate”.
Influencers don’t always know what to share and what to hide. Some can end up providing personal details that can come back haunting them.
Influencers often have to share personal things including relationship troubles. However, this can end up taking a toll on their relationships and ruin not just their personal but professional lives as well.
This can be very difficult for influencers who post as ‘friends’ or ‘couples’. Popular YouTube stars David Dobrik and Liza Koshy had to go through this trauma when they broke up after dating publicly for around two years.
They decided to keep their breakup a secret in order to complete pending projects and announced it by posting a video on YouTube.
Bad for Mental Health
While influencers appear to be happy on the web, the truth is that many face mental health issues including anxiety and depression. The pressure to be able to create high-quality content that reaches a wide audience can take a toll on one’s mental health and cause them to suffer.
It is common for influencers to lose sleep due to losing followers or posts not doing well. Plus, online hatred can also impact one’s mental health.
“People messaging you rude things can have an impact on your mental health,” says Pani, a fast-growing social media star. He also provides tips on how to deal with online hatred and keep your sanity.
“It is important to know that the person behind the keyboard does not know you as a person,” he adds.
An influencer should consider taking a break if faced with challenges such as being too addicted to social media or find that it’s impacting their mental well-being. While being away may impact your following, it will benefit you in the long run. Even big names like Lilly Singh and Elle Mills are known for taking breaks for the same reason.
“I turned into such a machine. I was feeling that I was completely losing what it means to be human,” said Singh in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter.
Too Much Effort
We know that it is not easy to be an influencer, especially in competitive niches where too many people are making similar posts.
You will not find instant success. It can take you months to gather a decent following. Not everyone has the time or patience to wait this long and a large number of ‘aspiring influencers’ end up quitting midway.
“It takes time to be an influencer,” reminds Muhammad Hanif, a photography influencer who loves to spend time around pets.
Debby Barrientos, a self-taught makeup artist and skincare enthusiast with more than 17K Insta followers, seems to agree with Hanif. She believes that “the worst thing about being an influencer is how competitive the industry is”. However, she adds that this competition “is what makes me work harder”.
If you want to find success then you will have to keep working hard round the clock, especially in the current scenario where things change at a rapid pace.
“Keeping up with the extremely variable world of social media” can be very difficult, according to Robin Who, a Canadian influencer.
While competition seems to be a major problem, a successful influencer also has to deal with challenges such as having to try new things. This can be difficult, especially for makeup and food influencers, since not all products are safe.
Arpit Vaid, a lifestyle blogger, hates the idea of “trying new things” that can affect his skin. To avoid this problem, influencers should only work with reliable brands.
No Creative Liberty
Not all influencers get a chance to show their creative side since some brands can be very tough to work with.
Fashion blogger Jhilmil D Saha doesn’t enjoy working with stringent brands and believes that “brands that interfere too much in creative liberty” can ruin the entire experience.
To solve the challenges of dealing with difficult collaborations, simply look for creative brands that allow their influencer to think out of the box and are willing to listen to new ideas. It might be a good idea to exhibit some creative and successful collaborations on your profile so they can see what you are capable of.
We share tips from time to time and can help influencers find top brands that pay well and are open to listening to creative ideas.