Behind every attractive woman on Instagram is the “Instagram Husband,” the person reluctantly taking their significant others’ photos repeatedly to get it just right for the ‘gram. However, whereas in 2015, a viral video made the term a social media joke, has influencer culture made it an actual job?
In a recent article in The Atlantic, the men (and women) behind the camera talk about how the role of chief social media photographer in their relationships has evolved. In one case, a husband shifted away from his job at a tech start-up to basically manage the business end of his wife’s role as an Instagram influencer. The photographers all described the behind-the-scenes preparation that goes into a carefully coordinated shoot for Instagram, and many described the pursuit as serious business. Some even gained enough of a following as Instagram husbands to be influencers themselves, albeit on a smaller scale.
Have we reached peak madness with Instagram and influencer culture? It’s now come to the point where people are faking brand-sponsored posts just to look like influencers, and where many so-called influencers are buying fake followers that it’s hard to tell where real influence ends and the smoke and mirrors begins.
My own experience when working with influencers has been an overinflated sense of confidence and an underwhelming amount of professionalism. At Canon, we hired influencers who ostensibly used our products for many experience events. Invariably, I’d see them posting from our events with cell phones where they should have been using DSLRs and wireless transfer. In all cases, they didn't care when I called them out on it.
In another instance, I was training a group of influencers hired for our event to use our app, when one raised a hand and complained that they couldn't find it. Turns out she was spelling “Canon” wrong in the search box; the company’s name was written on the shirt she was wearing. It’s quite possible that influencer culture is the next tech bubble to burst, if these experiences are any indication.
Is being an Instagram husband a legit job? Would you leave your job to pursue something like this full-time? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.