The rise of social media influencers has led to a brave new frontier in communication. Gone are the days where television ads and newspapers were the only ways to have your message heard. Here are 5 social influencers who have not only built impressive online platforms but are using their influence for good.
Katie Sturino is a fashion blogger and Instagram star who advocates for fashion for all sizes. She has skyrocketed her influence to show women of all ages that style isn’t limited by size. Katie’s influence has now moved beyond social media. She recently began hosting an E online fashion show, launched a line of body care products, and runs a full-time Fashion PR agency.
Katie’s blog, The 12ish Style, offers body acceptance and fashion advice to “women sizes 12-18 living in a size 2 world.” She was recently the recipient of a Shorty Award in the Lifestyle category for promoting good online.
Joel Sartore has harnessed the power of Instagram to work for the good of endangered species. This National Geographic photographer created an Instagram account called the Photo Ark that now has over one million followers. The account shares photos of endangered animals and conservation stories.
“It is folly to think that we can destroy one species and ecosystem after another and not affect humanity,” he says. “When we save species, we’re actually saving ourselves.”
Joel’s Instagram success led him to write two books and he also speaks on the subject of conservationism. He was also awarded the 2018 National Geographic Explorer of the Year.
Em Ford initially grew her platform as a beauty vlogger on YouTube. She later took a stand against the unrealistic expectations social media and advertising can create. She started showing her following her makeup-free face and sharing her lifelong struggles with severe acne. Em compiled the makeup looks and documented the negative responses in a video called You Look Disgusting. The video went viral with over 10 million views the first week alone and started meaningful discussion into online bullying.
Since 2015, I have used my platforms and voice to talk about hate online, and why perpetuating beauty standards has very real, and very serious consequences.
Em continues to use her reach to share a message of skin positivity with her audience of almost one million Instagram followers.
Lilly Singh is a Canadian YouTube sensation who has amassed over 2 billion views and 13 million subscribers on YouTube. She is one of the top 100 most popular YouTube influencers. Lilly started a video series on her channel featuring the hashtag #GirlLove to discourage hate between women. Lilly has also used her popularity for good as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador to South Africa and India, addressing issues of school violence.
I met with children and young people who have experienced a range of violence, from bullying and physical attacks to corporal punishment, sexual assault and harassment, no child should have to face violence at school, a place where they should feel safe and protected.
Lilly has also partnered with Michelle Obama to promote girl’s education and written a book.
Diane Guerrero is best known as an actress but she also uses her social media platform to speak out on immigration issues. Diane’s family was deported to Columbia when she was just 14 while Diane, an American citizen, remained. Because of this, she uses her experience to speak into the issues of immigration. She shares her views on reform and family separations with her 1.4 million Instagram followers. Diane also recently published a children’s book called My Family Divided.
My book isn’t about scaring kids. It’s about showing you a life that could be yours, and it’s about posing questions: How would you deal with something like this if it happened to you? Maybe I can motivate a kid to become an immigration lawyer or run for office or educate his or her parents.
All of these social influencers have turned their popularity into a force for positive change. Another popular movement for change bolstered by social media is the Minimalism movement. Read more about Understanding the Minimalism Trend here.