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Inside the influencer industry

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Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

American artist Andy Warhol once said, "In the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes."

In an era of Instagram and TikTok it appears that the future is now.

Almost anyone can be internet famous for a hot minute and use that flash in the pan to influence consumers.

They are the influencers. They are content creators who frequently video themselves talking to the camera about topics such as make-up tutorials, saving masculinity, how to ace an interview or which model train is most realistic.

They are media creations that plug all kinds of products.

It's estimated that nano influencers have between 1000 and 10,000 online followers and can make $10 to $100 per sponsored post. Macro influencers (500,000 - 1,000,000 followers) generate $5000 to $10,000 per sponsored post.

Author Emily Hund shows how the methods influencers developed for creating, monetizing, and marketing social media content have permeated our lives and untangles the unforeseen cultural and economic costs.

The Influencer Industry reveals how, in an increasingly fractured and profit-driven communications environment, the people we think of as “real” are merely those who have learned to exploit the industry’s ever-shifting constructions of authenticity.


Emily Hund: author of The Influencer Industry: The Quest for Authenticity on Social Media

"The Source" is a live call-in program airing Mondays through Thursdays from 12-1 p.m. Leave a message before the program at (210) 615-8982. During the live show, call 833-877-8255, email thesource@tpr.org or tweet@TPRSource.

*This interview will be recorded on Tuesday, February 28.

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David Martin Davies can be reached at dmdavies@tpr.org and on Twitter at @DavidMartinDavi