This is a topic that I get asked about a lot, so I thought to have a little chat about it today and open up the conversation to my audience. People seem to love my chatty posts so I hope you love this as well even though I know that it will be a bit of a ramble. I have no plan or outline really, but I fancied writing whilst I am sat on the train and this is something that has been on my ‘write about’ list for a while, so here we go. Are bloggers relatable anymore?
All of the photos in this post were taken by the lovely Ami Ford, on our shoot which was actually a few months ago now. This is the last ‘series’ of photos from that day, but I am definitely going to be shooting with her again in the spring hopefully. She is a wonder behind the camera!
Being relatable seems to be a topic that is very popular to talk about recently, and I think people are starting to crave that ‘girl next door’ reliability of 2013 internet back. The people that audiences used to love for their authenticity have gained views, gained ad revenue, bought some Gucci and their countryside mansion and now aren’t so relatable anymore. Trust me, I completely get where you are coming from as I feel like that about a lot of people as well. I believe that you should never apologise for your hard work and success, but I completely get that watching the ‘girl next door’ who you once loved for being like you end up living the high-powered lifestyle…. It just seems a bit inaccessible?
The relationship between bloggers and their audience was once real, authentic and most importantly they were relatable, and I feel like now the whole industry is just becoming more and more detached. Especially with the new ASA guidelines, although everything is a lot more transparent (which is a good thing) it does mean it is very easy to see who is living the overly indulgent lifestyle and who is just being gifted it. People I looked up to when I was 13 I am now no longer watching because they are just not relatable anymore, they aren’t young adults like the rest of us and are rather young adults with millions in the bank and a book deal. I would rather read and watch more upcoming people that I can relate to as well, such as the ‘studytube’ industry, which is a lot of students like me. I feel like I fit into their content a lot better now.
Going back to the certain group of people who are now not relatable and in this weird middle ground of being rich but trying not to show it (you know who I’m looking at): I wish that they had noticed this and instead of acting like they are relatable when they clearly aren’t, adapted to the change. I would have loved to see more about the ‘business’ side of things, and more about how they have built up their empires. More behind the scenes day to day stuff, I think it would have been a bit better than high street clothing hauls to ‘relate to people’ when 99% of the time they are dripping in designer. Consumers can see right through it and how not relatable they are, no matter how much they try to be!
That being said, there are some people that I follow purely because of their completely unrelatable nature, and the idea that they know that they are rich and just own it completely because after all they have built it. Take Jeffree Star for example, who is one of my favourite creators out there. And why do I love him so much? Because he is completely unrelatable! I love seeing something so ridiculously rich to the point where he is using a Tesla flamethrower to destroy a Louis Vuitton handbag, and I find that super entertaining. I also find it super interesting that Jeffree has built this up from nothing, and now he is everything. So maybe it is unrelatable, but is it unattainable? You decide.
Enough of other people, and now onto me. Honestly, I think about this a lot and I argue with myself a lot about the topic. I hope I am relatable, and I do think I am to a lot of young people but I don’t think that it is something that you can really judge yourself on. Thats why I am putting it out to my audience, am I relatable? I honestly am really curious to know what you think.
I built up my blog from literally nothing on my own and now I am running my own business at 18, which although isn’t what everyone is doing I feel like I have documented everything from the very beginning and I also feel like I have a balance in my content. I hope that I encourage my young audience to work hard and strive for better, whether thats through blogging or studying… and if I have done that then I feel like I have achieved something. A huge ‘theme’ of my blog that I try to get across is that hard work will get you anywhere, my family brought me up in this way and I really want to encourage and almost inspire people to work hard because of my content. I do think that is relatable and a good message to be putting out to the world.
I try to make my life seem interesting and mainly optimistic, but I equally don’t want anyone to feel like my life is ‘perfect’ in any way. I think there is fine line between moaning for attention and actually being honest, and I don’t ever want to put across the impression that I am not grateful or happy, when in fact I am. I want to look back at my page and it be a collection of happy moments, rather than a collection of everything. for example, my ‘hello’ series only focuses on the best bits and I would never say ‘well one day this month I had a really shit day’ and then go onto explain it, as that just isn’t necessary. Is only sharing the good bits a bad thing? Is it making me unrelatable?
Can anyone remember my studying a day posts? I think that sums it up for me. That was one of the most emotionally intense times of my life, I was in hospital nearly every week and studying for 4 A levels at the same time. That being said I still managed to keep all the stress away from Instagram and post a little snap of me studying. Yes i studied everyday and yes it was encouraging others to study, but part of me felt like I should have posted ‘today I ended up in hospital, cried 3 times and still made it back for my sociology lesson’ or ‘today I only turned up to one lesson because I was so stressed I cried to my nan on the phone for an hour whilst I should have been in economics’ but I wasn’t going to do that. I am really good at acting like everything is okay online when my life could be literally crumbling apart, and I think that is a problem that I need to work on. When in fact, I think people would have probably respected me more and related with me more if I just showed the stress rather than act like I had my shit together when in all honestly I didn’t at all.
I tried to be more real in my university series and didn’t sugarcoat anything, as I was bored of university only being perceived as the best time of your life when in a lot of cases this just isn’t true. Looking back now I’m feeling better and its seems like I am moaning so much in them posts but at the time I was sharing my raw emotions. I am proud that I made myself more vulnerable in them posts, as I had people messaging me saying that I helped them in some way and thats always my goal when creating and posting content online.
This has been a right ramble and I’m sorry (It has taken me nearly 2 hours to write), but I just wanted to sit down and write about what has been on my mind recently, especially since the new ASA guidelines were launched. What do you think? Do you like seeing influencers become more successful or do you think they lose touch? What is the line between moaning and positive but ‘relatable’ content? I think I want to go into the new year trying to be more relatable but still sharing the positive moments, but I’m not sure how I will do that. I think that sharing everything in moderation is the right way to go, whether thats sharing wealth, or negative moments or even positive moments. After all, nobody’s life is perfect and only sharing the perfect moments is going to make you lose touch even more.