Welcome to the digital schoolyard. Here you’ll find the cliche groups of people from the artsy nerds to the popular kids with the glitz and glam. Self-branding is the way in which people remember you…more than a trademark but how you present yourself on and offline (Lake. L, 2018) and in today’s society, another person’s perception of you can depict your worth on social media. In terms of Instagram, the social media platform now has over 800 million users with over 500 million daily users (K. Smith, 2018) making it one of the most used and engaging platforms on the internet. Along with Instagram there came what we millennials call ‘Influencers’; “Instagram users who have established credibility and audience through effective persuasion, trustworthiness and authenticity” (Pixlee, 2018). Today, they’re the “IT” girls who promote clothing, teeth whitening kits and gummy vitamins by posting an aesthetically pleasing picture. Influencers today are your “social media celebrities”, those who are being paid for being beautiful and the flawless. Instagram as a platform for sharing, has enabled everyday individuals to become the ‘influencer’ and this is where my research will explore the true messages they are portraying themselves online. Social media allows its users to “live another life” through the images they post, and the research conducted in this report will explore the effectiveness of using Instagram to build an online persona and explore the messages we receive as an audience.
Instagram, founded in 2010 by Kevin Systrom & Mike Krieger (R. Bruner, 2016) instantly became one of the biggest platforms for sharing images and videos across the globe. On July 16, 2016, Krieger posted the first ever Instagram post and instantly the world became aware of the illustrative food pics, cute dogs and art. The social platform soon became what we millennials would refer to as “the gram” where we could double tap what we love, comment what we think and post whatever we wish. Within the last decade, Instagram opened its doors for artist, creators and the luxury living. With other platforms such as YouTube and Facebook popping up on the way to the future, Instagram now holds the fort for being one of the most engaging platforms in terms of creativity and general sharing. According to statistics, over 40 billion photos have been shared since day one and over 80 million are shared daily (K. Smith, 2018).
Your’s sincerely, Lachy.
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