Social Media: The breeding ground for new fashion entrepreneurs

The business world has experienced several changes in the last few decades. There was a time when both automobile manufacturers and Oil & Gas companies dominated the list of the top 10 most valuable companies in the world. However, this list now majorly comprises technology companies — Microsoft, Apple, Amazon, Alphabet (parent company of Google), Facebook (parent company of Instagram and WhatsApp), Alibaba, and Tencent Holdings— that have become household names.

The internet and smartphones have contributed to the ways we now live our lives. Most of the companies listed above are either directly or indirectly responsible for powering social media platforms, and these platforms have become a place where many people find excitement and validation.

The concept of social media isn’t new, between the late 1990s and early 2000s, we had social media platforms such as hi5, Myspace and Yahoo Messenger. But the new players in this market have made tremendous improvements and their strategy seems to be working. Also, I believe the older platforms were ahead of their time and as a result, they couldn’t really do much with what they had.

As we all know, celebrities are public figures whose actions could lead to a cult-like following, there’s often no limit to how celebrities are worshipped, and each media house always wants to be the first to break the news about celebrities current activities. As a result, Paparazzi keeps lurking around their residence and offices like private investigators sent on a spy mission to gather information about their daily routine, relationship status, pregnancy and childbirth, asset acquisition, brawl, etc.

Those considered as celebrities back then were; the royals, politicians and people in industries such as movie, music, comedy, and sport. Apart from having fans who watch them on TV or listen to them on radio stations, these set of people are often rich. It’s not unheard of for them to be on Billboards or TV commercials whilst advertising for some of the major brands — BMW, Rolex, Longines, Gillette, etc. — in the world. We’ve seen some of these celebrities grace our screen with their Angelic voice during Sporting events — Super Bowl, FIFA World Cup, etc. — and Presidential swearing-in ceremony.

With the advent of social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, TikTok and Twitter, one would have thought that only the traditional celebrities we earlier discussed would make money when retailers decided to start using the platform for brand and product awareness. Most of us were far from right, what we saw was an unbelievable expansion of the list of people categorized as celebrities.

The people that made this new list were unknown, but were able to amass a large following on social media platforms and outstanding engagements (likes, comments, retweets, etc.) whenever they post contents — picture or video — and this led to a rise in young millionaires in dollars. The target demography of retailers is important to their business growth, and as such, they are always strategic when in need of celebrities to market their brand.

Based on the information on Statista, the average daily social media usage of internet users around the globe was estimated at 145mins, and we have more than 3 billion social media users worldwide. This is a hot market for companies that want visibility or to increase their revenue, this can be done by signing a contract with social media celebrities (a.k.a Influencers) to endorse/promote their brand or a particular product. The Influencers sometimes accept products as a form of payment instead of money, and many of them have decided to use their newfound fame to enhance their career in music, fashion, etc.

With the cult-like influence that social media Influencers have, they are not immune from being blacklisted by major brands. This is why many Influencers often have a team including a PR Manager that handles most of their interactions and daily activities. Most companies aren’t interested in associating with someone that will give their brand bad publicity. So, having another side hustle — merch selling — isn’t a bad idea.

If you’re a frequent user of TikTok, you probably would have heard of Loren Gray, Michael Le, and Addison Rae. These Gen Z millionaires from the U.S. have made a name for themselves through social media and can also be regarded as fashion entrepreneurs. We now have companies such as Heepsy where you can find Influencers to market your product. The Influencers job isn’t an easy task, as a result, some Influencers use scheduling apps — e.g. Hopper HQ — to manage their busy schedules.

Loren Gray is a 19 years old social media Influencer, musician, and model. At the age of 13 years, she joined (now known as TikTok). At the time of writing this article, she has 21.7 million followers on Instagram, 1.5 million Twitter followers, 52.4 million TikTok followers, and 3.85 million YouTube subscribers. Loren’s fashion company sells jewellery — necklaces, bracelets, earrings — which you can add to your accessories collections.

Video Source: TikTok (Loren Gray)

Michael Le (born on March 19, 2000), known as JustMaiko on social media, is another Gen Z social media Influencer with 2.7 million Instagram followers and 48.4 million TitTok followers. With Michael at the helms of Shluv Clothing, we can only hope that his net worth will continue to increase, and he’s likely to gain more experience that could help with his creativity, increased product portfolio, and expansion to other countries.

Video Source: TikToker (Michael Le, Justmaiko)

Addison Rae (born October 6, 2000) is a social media Influencer and dancer. In July 2019, her decision to actively post content on TikTok brought her fame. She has 38.1 million Instagram followers and 80.7 million followers on TikTok. Addison

Video Source: TikTok (Addison Rae)

Let’s quickly dive into the products/merch that you can purchase from some of these amazing social media Influencers.

  1. Product Description: &always, Gold Essential Chain Necklace Set

Two Figaro chain necklaces, one thicker and one thinner, for the ultimate layered look. can be worn separately or together. 14" with 3" extender, 17" with 3" extender. 100% gold-toned metal alloy.

Image Source: &always (Price: $26)

2. Product Description: Shluv Clothing, Tagged Up Hoodie in Blue

50/50 cotton/poly fleece cosy-fit hoodie, and available in medium and large sizes. This hoodie looks cool, and it will surely fit perfectly if you’re going to wear a ripped or distressed denim jeans and sneaker.

Image Source: Shluv Clothing (Price: $50)

3. Product Description: Shopping Addison Rae, OBSESSED White Crop Tank

Adult Midweight Cropped Tank Top and 100% Cotton. Available in medium, large, and XL sizes. This is sexy top can be worn with tight faux leather pant or leggings.

Image Source: Shopping Addison Rae (Price: $25)

Influencers know that their actions could affect the judgement of their followers. This unexplainable devotion to Influencers is often further solidified by purchasing and keeping merch being sold by Influencers. Although, in this article, the Influencer merch was limited to fashion items and Influencers with massive followers on TikTok, however, it’s possible to purchase a deck of cards, yoga mats, books, and camera bags.

We now live in a world where many people immerse themselves in a different type of reality on social media, spending hours smiling whilst viewing contents, and expressing their views in the comment section. Many people can no longer live without their smartphones for a day, the boredom they are likely to experience is enough to make them either depressed or aggressive.

I hope you were able to find merch that deserves to be included in your closet.

As usual, the Dartemuv team just want to say thank you for reading this article and we hope to bring you more…

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