Social media has given us all a platform to share our unsolicited thoughts, ideas, and opinions. In return we’ve carved out a new career as an influencer. An influencer is a regular shmegular person who has a major impact on an industry or field who are sometimes connected to key media outlets, consumer groups, industry associations or community leaders. These people have respected opinions or a legion of fans that will bully anyone who speaks negatively on the person they decide to follow. These “influencers” usually don’t make too much money if any. If they are compensated they get merch, product, or free stuff from the brand or the company. People aren’t the same online as they are in the physical. These influencers won’t tell you when they’re wrong or simply saying the wrong thing. Hip Hop as the number one music genre is the influencer!
Rappers young and old want to influence consumers to buy their music but they reject the notion that they are role models and influencers. When Lil Wayne started wearing skinny jeans he got clowned but now look at how fashion has changed. When Kanye West had the first Yeezy Season he got clowned for the clothes looking worn and tattered but now look at the landscape of fashion. The influencer has to be confident and sure of themselves because you have to stand on your square. That’s why recklessly saying things on camera or radio can be detrimental to those that are being influenced by whomever. Now once the person loses their power to influence the masses what happens to them then? Some people mold their life around how others treat them and that can be dangerous for them and us.
2Pac, Mother Theresa, Malcolm X, and Hitler were all influencers who had thousands of followers but at what lengths are you willing to blindly follow someone? Any one of us could become an influencer as we all have opinions that many others may agree with. It’s easy to get someone to do something stupid or reckless but can you influence someone to do something positive and productive? Can you encourage someone to do something other than dye their hair, pop a pill, or steal? An influencer is aware of how many people she or he is influencing and either they become drunk with power or they use their power for good. Being an influencer is all about how you wield your power in the platform. As an influencer you have to be attentive and retain your power over the platform and not allow the platform to overpower you.
“Nothing more influential than rap music.” – Kendrick Lamar (Black Friday)