Time Magazine announced recently its second annual (unranked) list of top 30 influencers on the internet, and they aren’t all Hollywood celebrities and business moguls.
The celebs who did make the list did so because of the interesting ways they use the Internet to are cross promote their content. For instance, Late Late Show host James Corden, created segments like Carpool Karaoke which have been a big success both on television and online.
DJ Khaled has also enjoyed roaring success online. Despite a relatively short tenure on Snapchat, he’s become a core star of the service, and gained more than 20 million followers. His content is part inspirational, part aspirational, and tailor-made for the internet.
But the real story of influence this year, are digital media stars who started out from nothing. Felix Arvid Ulf Kjellberg, the personality behind YouTube’s biggest channel PewDiePie, is creating his own network in partnership with Disney’s Maker studios. Popular sex and relationship vlogger Laci Green is leading the creative team for Trojan condoms’ “Consent. Ask for it” campaign.
Short form video content has also changed the market drastically, pushing many social media creatives to the top. Lele Pons, the most watched user on Vine, has made multiple deals with brands like Starbucks and Coca-cola, while also being invited to the White House to create vines advocating for children’s education. Other vine stars like King Bach are now adding feature film credits to their resumes.
There are many other influencers who made a significant impact on the networks they inhabit, including the eccentric rapper Kanye West and the woman behind I Fucking Love Science Facebook passion page, Elise Andrew. Sometimes it’s about aggregation, sometimes it’s natural star power, and sometimes it’s about good content. No matter what, it’s always about the ability to draw and retain audiences.
Readers: Who are your favorite internet influencers?