What does it take to become a model and land high-paying campaigns? The answer to this question, many people would say, is anything from having the right look and being represented by a good agency to a person’s own hard work and dedication. However, recently, another factor has surfaced that might change the game in the fashion industry: Instagram followers.
Reportedly, many big brands are now looking to hire models based on how influential they are on social media. For some, 10,000 followers is a minimum one should achieve. Models have even revealed that giving out their Instagram handle is increasingly a part of casting processes–one that has a lot of weight on whether they could get the job or not.
For girls such as Kendall Jenner and Gigi Hadid who have managed to garner a large following on the social media platform, working with famous brands seems to be norm. Between Jenner and Hadid, their resumé include names in the likes of Givenchy, Marc Jacobs, Versace, and Balmain. The trend indicates that their influence in the fashion industry does not seem to be fading anytime soon and it is expected that they should continue to land more prestigious job opportunities in the future.
Such reliance on social media in the industry has been met with criticisms, however. After Jenner appeared in Calvin Klein’s spring 2016 ad campaign, the man behind the company, Calvin Klein himself, shared that he had never agreed with the decision to hire the young model simply because of her influence online.
Despite critics such as Klein, there is no denying that Instagram is beginning to play a huge role in the fashion industry. Many models now accept that they must garner fans on social media to continue working, and brands are starting to choose models with heavy emphasis on their ability to be influential online. With social media becoming more ubiquitous around the world, this is one trend in fashion that will only persist and increase with time.