Hello Gemma. Thank you for joining us. Tell us a bit more about your background.
My names Gemma Markland and my social media platform were created at the end of 2019, based on my love of pink and rose gold and how I brought this into my home interior. Previously a school business manager, I now run my own business bespoke gems ltd full time and have 5 staff. I am also an influencer on the side for my page @themarklandhome
How did You get your start as an influencer and how did you decide on industry focus?
My page originally was to document our journey of buying a new build property. I never planned to be an “influencer” and just used Instagram as more of a personal diary for our journey. Soon after, my style became really popular and caught people’s attention, I was soon receiving offers for collaboration and knew that this was something I wanted to take seriously.
Where do you get the ideas for your content?
My content is very unique, my style is my own and I feel that this shows and is the reason we have grown so quickly – you need to stand out and be yourself!
How do you choose which brands to work with?
I only work with brands that I am genuinely interested in. I would never promote something that I would not use in my daily life.
How has Your life changed since becoming an influencer?
My life has changed dramatically, I now have to get used to being in the public eye, getting recognized in public (we even got recognized on holidays) and the money that being an influencer brings in has also had a huge impact on our lives. Unfortunately, there is also the negatives to this where people judge me for my platform.
What’s been Your biggest challenge as an influencer?
People being unsupportive and trolling. Unfortunately, I do believe you need thick skin in this industry because as soon as you are an influencer doing well, people seem to become bitter and jealous.
How did you grow your channel?
I grew my page by being original, unique, standing out from the crowd, and also by being consistent. Consistency is key.
What is your advice for creating an authentic audience on social media? How did you get the ball first rolling?
Daily posting, daily stories, and engaging with others. Do your research and don’t give up! You need to be gaining attention at all times and the only way you can do this is by being active as much as possible.
As an influencer, what do you do to switch off your phone?
I absolutely love being an influencer and enjoy being on my phone chatting and posting. When I’m busy with work I just put my phone on silent at the other side of the room if I need a break!
What is the best piece of advice that you were ever given?
Believe in yourself!
If you don’t believe in yourself, then how are others supposed to believe in you too!
What strategic advice do you have for up-and-coming Instagram influencers?
Stand out from the crowd or you won’t get noticed.
Do you predict any shift in influencer marketing in the coming future?
I think it will only get bigger. Social media marketing is huge but has so much more potential, the best is yet to come!
What do you think is most misunderstood about influencer marketing?
People think we get everything for “free” and for doing “nothing”. They don’t see the hard work behind the scenes that goes into creating good content, they don’t see the reporting and the analytics and the studying that goes into being a successful influencer.
How did you build that loyalty with followers?
Just by being myself, I am such an honest person and I try to be real at all times. I am down to earth and think that my followers relate to this.
Do you feel that your online life reflects who you are as a person, or do you feel like you have an internet “persona,” to a degree?
I am 100% real and honest. You get what you see, although you only see a very small percentage of my life online, I like to believe that this is who I am in real life too!
What’s one “influencer marketing must” that marketers often overlook?
Loyalty. Someone may have followers but may not be relatable as a person. People need to know you as a person to trust you and therefore buy what you are marketing.