by MIKE CHAIKEN
Just like most of the world, the lives and livelihood of social influencers has ground to a halt because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
There are some influencers still taking to social media to sell products, such as Kim Kardashian promoting her SKIMS body shapers and Josh Charles promoting, well, Josh Charles.
However, as people are ordered to shelter in place, the life of a social influencer is not the same as it was pre-COVID 19.
Cydneyanne Hall of Florida, 19, with 16,000 followers on Instagram, said the coronavirus is hampering her ability to perform as a social influencer.
“I am limited to my content,” said Hall. “I can’t travel or go to nicer places to create content at the moment. I am also struggling to get these brand posts done again because of limitations on where I can and cannot go.”
Additionally, Hall said that COVID has stopped her from doing photoshoots or modeling gigs associated with being an influencer. She can’t work with professional photographers as everyone is urged to engage in social distancing. She has to take her own images for Instagram, or have someone else, who is less skilled than a professional, take her photograph.
“I have so much more time on my hands now that we are on a lockdown,” said Hall. “However, I still cannot do what I need to do.”
“It’s been an interesting time for me business wise,” said social influencer Alexa Curtis of Connecticut (LifeUnfilteredWithAlexa.com).
“In terms of cancellations, I had many college appearances I was getting compensated to speak at, along with the 2020 Be Fearless Summit that was slated for April 1,” said Curtis. “All of those events were canceled, and as a young founder, having to invest so much time and money into an event to have to indefinitely postpone it was pretty crushing for me this year.”
“In terms of content, I don’t think my social media has ever done better,” said Curtis. “I think everyone is home right now and needing some form of inspiration, so I’ve been really tuning in to that and putting on a mini series every day on Instagram. It’s been incredibly successful.”
Lexia Hayden, 12, who has 100,000 followers on Instagram, has had some disappointments since the pandemic. “COVID has made life much quieter,” she said in a message via Instagram. “My birthday is May 1 and I must accept the big 13th birthday pool-party-bash my parents planned for me will probably not happen this June.”
Additionally, she said, “All my job bookings (as a model) that were planned have been postponed.”
However, Hayden said that thanks to her mother’s skill as a photographer, she is still able to keep her commitment to the companies who hired her to promote their products on social media.
Curtis was philosophical about the events brought on by COVID. “As a founder, you always have to be prepared for what’s next. Was I expecting this? Of course not. But am I ready to come out of it stronger than ever?”
Hayden also gleaned some positivity out of the coronavirus breakout.
“My family is everything and we get to spend even more time together,” said Hayden.
“I know this will pass,” said Hayden, “and I have to believe those jobs will still be there for me, and if not, brand new ones will be.”
“After all,” Hayden said, “We are all in this together.”