Yes, You Can Be Internet Famous

Deep down, most of us long to be famous. While most of us live our lives in anonymity, as a celebrity you can have an impact on the world, leave a meaningful legacy behind, and have your name remembered for ages.

Sometimes, though, fame isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. While PR professionals might claim there’s “no such thing as bad publicity,” for individuals seeking fame, that’s not always the case. When it comes to your own legacy, it’s probably better to live in obscurity than to have your name smeared throughout history.

Even if you’re not remembered as a villain for all time, a brief firestorm of bad publicity can cost you. Take Justine Sacco, who was fired due to an inappropriate tweet that went viral, or the South Korean student who became famous and endured harrassment as “Dog Poop Girl” after refusing to clean up after her dog on the subway.

Those cautionary tales prove a point: If you’re after Internet stardom, you need to take charge by crafting your own online identity before you hit the big time.

By following the right steps to stardom, you can turn around even bad publicity in your favor. Even if an unflattering photo of you suddenly goes viral, you can imitate accidental star McKayla Maroney and reclaim your fame with a positive attitude.

But instead of waiting for your one-in-a-million chance of going viral accidentally, it’s better to start off on the right foot to begin with than to be accidentally launched into fame by a chance photo or misstep and then have to try to make the best of it.

If you’ve decided to take your Internet stardom into your own hands, just follow the steps below and your name will be known around the web before you know it.

Yes You Can be Internet-Famous

Yes, You Can Be Internet Famous

There are no guarantees, but being famous on the Internet doesn’t have to be difficult. With the right “hook” and strategy, you too, can become Internet famous.

Preparing for Your Internet Fame

  • Choose Your Niche
    • Something you’re knowledgeable/passionate about
      • This knowledge and passion will shine through, helping to attract and engage followers
      • If you have a product or service you’re trying to promote, your niche may be easier to find.
    • Adapt your personality to appeal to your ideal audience.
      • Don’t be someone you’re not.
      • Highlight one or two appealing aspects of your personality more than the others.
  • Select Your Platforms: Choose at least two or three of these platforms to use. Go where your ideal fans/followers are most likely to be.
    • Your own blog: Give your followers a central place to keep up with you and the things you’re doing online and off.
    • Microblogging: Twitter
      • Short updates in 140 characters or less
    • Multimedia:
      • Video blogs with YouTube®
      • Audio recordings (podcasts)
    • Social networks: One or more depending on your niche.
      • Facebook
      • Google+®
      • Pinterest®
      • Instagram®
      • LinkedIn®
    • Social bookmarking and news: This can be a good way to get your content out there to others, particularly if you are good at separating good quality content from bad.
      • Reddit
      • StumbleUpon
      • Digg
      • Delicious

Develop Your Social Media Strategy

  • After deciding which platforms you’ll use, decide how much time you want to dedicate to each.
    • You can do it all in an hour a day or less, though it’s a good idea to break it up in two 30 minute sessions, or four 15 minute sessions.
      • Morning 15 minutes:

        • Check Twitter and blog comments
        • Tweet once or twice
        • Respond to blog comments.
      • Lunchtime 15 minutes:

        • Write a blog post.
        • Send out a tweet to announce the new post.
        • Update your status
      • Afternoon 15 minutes:

        • Update your status.
        • Send a few tweets.
        • Check your blog for more comments and respond.
      • Evening 15 minutes:

        • Update status
        • Tweet
        • Respond to new comments
    • If you’ll be doing videos or podcasts, dedicate a few hours a week to their production. You need quality here, so time is important.
      • You can also dedicate a couple hours a week to writing the week’s blog posts.
    • Use services like HootSuite® to automate your status updates and tweets, but don’t forget to actually be present to respond accordingly.
      • Post during peak times when you know your audience is most likely to be online to see it.
        • Example: If your audience is likely to check their social media before work, post something around 7 am.
      • Cross post your material on several social networks.
        • Example: Share your YouTube video on both Facebook and Twitter.
      • Talk to not at your audience. It’s not all about promoting your material.
        • Example: Ask questions to get them talking to you. Have conversations with people. That’s what social media is all about.

Brand Consistency

  • No matter which social media networks you join, be consistent across all of them.
    • Choose a username and profile picture to use on all your social media profiles.
      • Keep them designed similarly in terms of background/cover images.
    • Share the same types of material on all your networks.
      • Your Facebook fans should not feel any different about you than your Twitter or Instagram followers.

Engage Your Following

  • In the beginning, you won’t likely have many people talking to you, so talk to them.
    • Ask questions, such as:
      • What’d you have for lunch today?
      • If you had a million dollars, what would do?
    • Re-tweet the best answers to make your followers feel valued.
  • If you’re on Tumblr, make sure to enable the “ask” function, so your followers can ask you questions.
  • Keep a few things in mind:
    • Don’t simply re-tweet every single response you get to every question you ask.
      • Your followers may start to feel spammed.
      • You can favorite or like responses, too.
    • Thank fans for reaching out to you, whether they do it with criticism or praise.
    • Don’t blatantly advertise or self-promote all the time.
      • It’s okay sometimes, but between promotional posts, make sure to discuss things relevant to your followers like current events and news.
        • You’ll become a trusted source of information, rather than fading into the “noise” of the Internet.
    • Take the time to proofread your posts before publishing them. Funny mistakes may generate buzz, but not the buzz you want.
      • Make sure there are no typographical or grammatical errors.
      • Make sure all links work correctly.

Use Hashtags and Memes

  • Hashtags: #hashtags are a form of social discovery on many social networks, including Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

    • Use them to help people find you.
      • Example: If your niche is food, hashtags like: #yum, #dinner, #food are good places to start.
    • Encourage people to use them to help further your branding.
      • Example: Hello Fresh, a meal delivery service, encourages their followers to hashtag photos of their recipes with #hellofreshpics
  • Memes: Images that are easily shared across social media.

    • Example: Grumpy Cat
    • Use a Meme Generator tool, like QuickMeme, to create a meme in just a few minutes, no technical expertise required.
      • Upload a photo or choose one of theirs
      • Add your text
      • Add it anonymously to the QuickMeme servers
      • Start sharing within five minutes.

Keep Them Coming Back for More

  • Keep your content fresh and new. Don’t just do the same thing everyone else is doing. Find a way to put your own spin on it.
  • Lean to what your audience is asking for.
    • Give them what they want, and they will remain loyal.
      • It’s their word of mouth that will help you become viral enough to consider yourself an online celebrity.

Internet Celebs You Might Know

  • S. Gymnast McKayla Maroney
    • Her infamous facial expression during the Olympics award ceremony spurred the “McKayla’s Not Impressed” Internet meme.
  • Ridiculously Photogenic Guy: Zeddie Little
    • His photo was captured while running a race in South Carolina and uploaded to Flickr.
    • His face then became part of memes all over the Internet.
  • Korean Pop Star Psy
    • His Gangham Style pop video got 8 million views in two weeks, and currently holds the Guinness World Record for Most Likes on YouTube with over 700 million.
  • Former head of PR for InterActive Corp, Justine Sacco
    • An offensive tweet about taking a trip to Africa caused the woman not only to lose her job, but to skyrocket to Internet fame.
      • Not all Internet fame is good fame.
  • Blake Wilson, aka BatDad
    • A Vine star who used his Internet videos to teach people better manners; providing fatherly advice in a fun way.

What Makes People Internet Famous?

Some Internet fame, like McKayla Maroney and Ridiculously Photogenic Guy is accidental. But, these three have achieved fame by doing something others aren’t prepared to do.

  • Perez Hilton: Known for dishing celebrity gossip, no matter how embarrassing it may be.
  • Jenna Marbles: Known for running one of the most popular channels on YouTube, with nearly 13 million subscribers as of March 2014, comedian Jenna Mourey posts a video every week.

    • Her videos are funny, and are usually not safe for work, because they address subjects not everyone is willing to talk about, including:
      • Better Names for Body Parts
      • How to Trick People into Thinking You’re Good Looking
      • How to Avoid Talking to People You Don’t Want to Talk to
      • What Girls Do in the Car
      • Drunk Makeup Tutorial
  • Reality Steve: Reality TV blogger who leaks reality TV information.

    • Recently leaked information about The Bachelorette Season 10
    • Leaked information about The Bachelor Season 18

Sources

  • Internet Famous: Becoming an Online Celebrity – webdesignerdepot.com
  • How to be Internet-Famous with the Help of Social Media – digitaltrends.com
  • How to Create Memes about Your Life (and Maybe Achieve Internet Fame) – gigaom.com
  • 15 People Made Famous by the Internet in 2012 – mashable.com
  • 16 People Made Famous by the Internet in 2013 – mashable.com
  • Two New Women Accuse Billy Cosby Of Sexual Assault — Read The Disturbing Details HERE – perezhilton.com
  • A Gossip Bad Boy Tries Being Nice – nytimes.com
  • ‘The Bachelorette’ 2014 Spoilers: Andi Dorfman Begins Filming New Season; Reality Steve Leaks List Of Reported Contestants – ibtimes.com
  • “Reader Emails,” Update on the Group Date This Saturday, and Final Live Video Chat For A While Tonight at 9:00pmEST/6:00pm PST – realitysteve.com

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  1. cool

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