Gone are the days when someone’s follower count… counted.
Credibility isn’t tied to celebrity anymore. It’s no longer the case that you need to be a Harvard-educated, mustache-twirling intellectual, or to have graced a Forbes list for people to lend you their attention. Instead, a trend of authentic creators is arising. And it’s here to stay.
Creators are starting to reclaim their humanity. This change from guru-like personas to relatable humans has already begun, and it’s only going to intensify. Carefully curated social feeds make room for casually crafted ones, where one’s life isn’t merely a collection of color-coordinated pictures. Articles posing as “definitive guides” take a step back so that vignettes of life can take center stage. Authenticity is in.
There are multiple reasons for this shift. Most noteworthy, the democratization of tools makes it easier for anyone to share their work. All you need is an idea and a computer connected to the internet. Then there’s the monetization argument: with a Substack publication or a Patreon account you can be supported directly by your audience. Finally, the sheer scale of the internet favors the creation of sub-cultures and niche communities where one can geek about their obscure interests.
People won’t click that “Follow” or “Subscribe” button because they saw you on TV or read your book. Instead, it will be the power of your personal stories that will unlock your audience’s trust. The public have always longed for honest, raw life experiences that reverberate across cultures, time and generations. But especially now. Why? Because we’ve reached a point of saturation – a time where everyone and their dog (seriously, even dogs) compete for a slice of the pie. So in a sea of abundance, genuine expression will shine.
Imagine sitting down for coffee with Taylor Swift. I guess even if you don’t worship at her altar, you’d still be a bit intimidated. I would. The woman can make a whole stadium bend to her will.
Speaking of power, the “influencers” of the past boasted their ability to solve your problems. Need a six pack? Want a higher paying job? Don’t know how to make small talk? They got a course for that. Just $997.
This is unlike the small creators of the future. Grabbing a cappuccino with them would be natural and unpretentious, a perfect time to discuss the interests or life paths that brought you together: battling a chronic illness, dealing with loss or self-publishing your first book. They won’t pretend to know all the answers, but they’ll hold space for you as you both work things through.
The future belongs to those who open up, who make themselves vulnerable, who dare say the things everyone thinks but are too scared to admit. Like the work-life balance myth, the problems with meritocracy, or how love has been monopolized by reductive romantic relationships.
The creator of the future is more than a brand. They’re multifaceted people. A mom turned entrepreneur who shares her experience navigating both worlds. A former runner who started a podcast to discuss the mental health struggles athletes face. A chef turned farmer who delves into the joys and hardships of growing your own food.
Welcome to the dawn of a new era, where the megaphones of celebrity will make room for the whispers of genuine voices.