From Influencer to Stylist?

How can an Influencer become the designer of their own brand?

Today I was reading an article in PambiancoNews about how British model and TV presenter Alexa Chung successfully launched her own clothing brand.

The transition from Influencer to Content Creator (and Entrepreneur) as the term has evolved and new professions and businesses have emerged

The digital world has witnessed a rapid evolution of online professions, with a significant transformation in the role of influencers. Initially, influencers were individuals who, via social media, shared content on various aspects of daily life, gaining a large following and resonance among their followers.

However, in recent years, there has been a marked shift from influencers to content creators and entrepreneurstestifying how the term influencer has expanded and diversified considerably. This change marked the beginning of an era in which content creation is no longer seen merely as a hobby or pastime, but as a well-rounded profession and a possible entrepreneurial career.

With the emergence of new digital platforms and the growing demand for original and challenging content, influencers have begun to revisit their approach, focusing more on quality, diversity of content offered and meaningful interaction with their audience.

This has led many of them to become true content creators, specialising in specific market niches and offering their followers highly specialised content. For instance, some influencers have turned into fashion designerlaunching their own fashion lines and leveraging their platforms to promote their products. This evolution has paved the way for new business opportunities, with influencers becoming leaders of emerging companies in fashion, beauty, lifestyle and beyond.

influence letters on floor

In conclusion, the transformation from influencers to content creators and entrepreneurs reflects a significant change in the digital industry.

The resulting new professions and businesses highlight how the concept of the influencer has evolved far beyond the simple sharing of personal moments, becoming a fundamental lever for entrepreneurial innovation and the creation of new markets.

With this evolution, there is an increasing professionalisation of the sector, offering concrete career opportunities to those who are able to successfully navigate the waters of digital change.

There has been a lot of talk in 2023 about the phenomenon of the (almost) natural evolution of influencers into entrepreneurs, and I believe there will be more and more talk about it in the future. The evolution of influencers into entrepreneurs is a phenomenon that has taken hold in recent years and intensified in 2023, and there are several reasons for this trend.

Why should an influencer create their own brand?

As I wrote in one of my recent articles a How to become a designer: even if you haven't studied fashion, can't sew and don't have a lot of money to spend a designer:

'A designer does not create clothes, he creates business models'

And at this juncture from Belen to Chiara Ferragni we have perfect examples of how one can skilfully exploit one's personal brand to give life to countless successful entrepreneurial activities ranging from fashion to catering.

Seen as an insider at times it can be almost frustrating, anyone who has worked as a brand manager, product developer or in a style office, in marketing or communication for the launch of a new brand, knows how difficult it is to reach the right target group.

group of people walking on pedestrian lane

As if that were not enough to then intercept the right tastes, arrive with the right message at the right time and so on. Influencers seem to go beyond all the traditional rules not only of marketing but especially those of fashion.

The question I find most interesting to ask is what is the key to the success of these characters? The best answer is given by Al and Laura Ries in their book:

"You can't launch a new brand with advertising because advertising has no credibility. It's the self-serving voice of a company anxious to make a sale. You can launch new brands only with publicity or Public Relations (PR).

Al & Laura Ries.

Influencers therefore have a practically infinite and self-powering PR potential.

This makes the launch phase of a brand, which is usually the most difficult and costly, a breeze! Making any investment in traditional advertising superfluous, the product itself takes a back seat.

If we look at Alexa Chung's collection in detail, in fact, the logic is that of private labelling.

The technical and creative side benefits from excellent collaborations with Madewell and AG Jeans and creative consultancy projects for Marks & Spencer, Superga and Eyeko

(Source. Pambianconews).

This is not a bad point, it is a well-known fact that even the big designers are no longer used to designing a single figure or pattern, so how can we blame the beautiful Alexa for taking good advice from those (like us) in the trade?

After all, she will be recognised as the spokeperson of her brand, the inventor, and since in people's minds the perception most often coincides, she will also be considered 'the designer'.

woman painting

The real merit of influencers who become stylists is that they have become a role model, an example of a lifestyle and beauty that most of their followers desire.

That is why they are willing to buy whatever their brand imprints on them.

This serves to get closer to them and to feel part of an ideal in what in psychology is called 'projective identification'.

Because as I usually say:

"If you are not are nothing".

Corrado Manenti

Fear not! Even if you are not an influencer, you can certainly throw yourself into creating something of your own. Most 'old-school' designers could not count on millions of views and followers. Dedication and talent can always be rewarded, it just takes more time and perseverance.

The 5 reasons to go from Influencer / Creator to Stylist

1. **Credibility and Trust**: Influencers build relationships and trust with their followers over time, often bypassing the need to build trust from scratch as an emerging business would. When they launch a product or company, they take that established trust with them, which can translate into significant initial sales.
2. **Direct Market Knowledge**: Through continuous interaction with their audience, influencers gain an in-depth understanding of the desires, needs and preferences of their target market. This insight uniquely positions them to create products or services that meet a precise demand from their audience.
3. **Authentic Marketing Skills**: Influencers already have the perfect channel to market their products: their own platform. Promotion through their social channels often appears less invasive and more authentic than traditional advertising campaigns, which can improve marketing effectiveness.
4. **Diversification of Income**: For influencers, starting their own business represents an opportunity to diversify income sources. Instead of relying solely on sponsorships or collaborations, becoming entrepreneurs allows them to build a more stable and sustainable income stream in the long term.

Passion and Personal Brand: Many influencers are driven by a passion for a particular industry or topic. Turning this passion into a business venture is often the natural next step. Moreover, their already strong and recognisable personal brand can facilitate the process of branding the enterprise.
The challenges, of course, are not lacking.

Going from influencer to entrepreneur requires entrepreneurial skills, a reliable support team, and a good dose of patience and determination to overcome the inevitable obstacles. However, with the right strategies and support, many influencers are finding success in this new venture.

If you don't know where to start, I recommend my article:

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