I was scrolling through my news feed and I came across a BuzzFeed article about Instagram. I’ll admit that I personally found the article slightly annoying, but I also learned something about how BuzzFeed defines a “good” Instagram account. I think there are takeaways in this article that could help put working artists at an advantage, so let’s take a deeper look at what it might teach us about how to make Instagram (and social media in general) worthwhile.
This article is about two stars who are seriously in the public eye: Britney Spears and Beyoncé Knowles. BuzzFeed (in their infinite clickbait wisdom) sets up the article like some kind of Pop Star Smackdown, but it ends up being more enlightening than you might think. Britney’s photos and videos show her in action: riding a bike, playing with her kids, and talking to her stylists backstage. She’s relatable, she talks to her audience, and she does more than stand there making a pouty face — unlike Beyoncé, according to BuzzFeed.
Beyoncé shows pictures of herself wearing all designer clothes standing in front of a private jet. There is no question that she’s paid a pretty penny for the outfits she models. Beyoncé looks trim, stylish, filtered, and photoshopped. Britney shows pictures of herself in the studio drinking a coffee and putting up a peace sign. BuzzFeed thinks that Britney is the clear winner of this Pop Star Smackdown.
Even if you’re not a fan of these particular hitmakers, the BuzzFeed’s commentary may be useful to you. BuzzFeed, as a staple in media dashboards, is setting the standard for Instagram users, especially performers! They’re saying that it’s better to be relatable to your audience than it is to flaunt your awesomeness and superiority to them. Your audience wants to see your process, your family, your quirky remarks, and hear your commentary. If they want to see a model posing or a bunch of famous people standing around together, they can pick up a magazine or go to Gap.com.
We can all broadcast our processes and daily tribulations to our audience.
If BuzzFeed is right about this (and since they have a significant role in determining the way the wind blows on the web right now, they probably are), every artist has a great opportunity to connect with her audience. We all have “normal” lives, busy rehearsal schedules, and family/friends who support us in our artistic endeavors. We can all broadcast our processes and daily tribulations to our audience.
BuzzFeed wants us to get personal with our pictures and broadcast what we do. It’s important to showcase your successes and your upcoming projects, but maybe it’s equally important to show who you are. How can you encompass yourself daily in a feed of photos? That’s the test, but we’re all creative, so it can’t be that hard.
Keep checking out our Artist Web School posts! Maybe we’ll find more gems in the BuzzFeed world…