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Project Influence: The Growth of an Influencer

Project Influence: The Growth of an Influencer


Almost every week one of my articles includes tips to assist the Beginner Influencer on his or her journey to grow their influence.  Friends and strangers alike regularly ask me for tips and advice regarding social media, influencer marketing, and growing their presence in the virtual landscape.

This weekend a unique opportunity crossed my path regarding influencer marketing.  More specifically, someone I know very well is interested in growing as a writer, sharing his work online, growing his social media presence while he does that, and becoming an influencer.

Project Influence

What exactly is “Project Influence”, how will it evolve, and how will it help you?

Project Influence is a social media experiment.  It is a one-on-one project in which I will be mentoring a budding social media guru wanna-be and writer-in-the-making, from scratch.  Yes, you read that right; my friend is literally a nobody in the virtual space, and we will be building up his social media presence and his influencer status day by day, week by week.

The Details

  • Name: The Slacktivist
  • Website: TheSlacktivist.org
  • Status: Domain name purchased, website not yet set up.
  • Social media status: non-existent
  • Real-life status: Working full-time in medical IT.  Prolific writer and philosopher has yet to publish publicly.
  • Once a week meetings to discuss the project, progress, and moving things forward.
  • Little to no prior knowledge of social media
  • Significant thwarting of social media in the past – dislikes the concept behind it
  • Willing to adhere to my advice
  • Demographics = Drew: Male, 25 years old, resides in California

Week One

This Saturday The Slacktivist and I met at The Public Market in Santa Barbara to discuss Project Influence and related details.  I knew I was in for a lot of work from the start and had to take the reigns.  When I opened the floor to TS (The Slacktivist) to hear what he envisioned for this project, he began sharing specific details of an article he began writing the previous days.  It was closer to a journal entry, but he was sharing from the top of his mind, which was great, except I needed to know a lot more about the bigger picture of his personal brand.

My Questions

  • What do you envision as your personal brand?
  • What are your goals with this project?
  • What will be the overarching topic of the blog?
  • How do you foresee it growing in the next years?
  • Which social media platforms do you want to target?

The Conversation

A philosopher, TS answered many of the questions in a round-about way.  I have a feeling he has not thought about any of this before, did zero research prior to our meeting, so his answers were shortsighted at best.  When asked about the overarching blog topic, he responded by telling me about the article he just wrote and thought his blog’s theme should be “Perfectionism”.

Having prior knowledge of what TS wanted to do with his blog, I had a feeling he was swept up in his article and missing the point of our goal-setting meeting.  You see, TS previously explained to me that he wanted to create a blog and personal brand to help others by sharing ways to change the world in small ways in one’s life on the daily.  I knew that perfectionism might be his topic of the moment, but it would be short-lived.  I explained that perfectionism could be a blog category heading, but should absolutely not be the theme of his brand.

Week 1 Tasks

  • First, I told The Slacktivist to decide on a brand name (which he did not have at the time).
  • Buy a domain name and decide on blog platform – he chose WordPress.
  • Set up basic social media profiles.  Instagram and Facebook were chosen to start.
  • As soon as these were in place, get an Advowire account, to boost content shares once he’s ready.
  • Research similar names and brands in the space.  Someone named “Slacktivist” surfaced, writing about the exact opposite topics my The Slacktivist intends to tackle.
  • Research as much as possible about how to build a blog and grow influence.  I sent him to my article on this very blog.

Meeting Conclusion

It was clear to me that The Slacktivist has a lot of reading and research to do before our next meeting.  Before moving forward, it is imperative that he does his own investigation of related topics to hone in on what his overarching them is, how he wishes to present himself, what blog platform he wants to use, should he go with a logo or without, if Pinterest needs to be part of his social strategy along with Facebook and Instagram, and many, many more to-dos.

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