Who Are The Influencers? - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Who Are The Influencers?

Who Are The Influencers?

Published May 19, 2017

Elías Þórsson
Photos by
Hörður Sveinsson

Technology has changed the way we consume culture, and social media platforms like Snapchat have provided the everyman with access to thousands. With that the individual has become able to carve out a piece of the marketing pie and become an ad agency in his own right. Behold the dawn of the ‘influencers’.

Garðar “Gæi” Viðarsson
Snapchat Handle: Iceredneck

How many followers do you have?
Somewhere between 15,000-18,000.

Why did you start snapping?
I thought it was a very neat app and I was certain I could have fun with it.

What do you think you do different which makes you more popular than others?
I am sincere, unfiltered and cheerful. My Snapchat is also sort of like reality TV and not one acted out scene.

Why do you think people have an interest in following people they don’t know on Snapchat?
I guess it is a way to satisfy people’s curiosity. Man has always been a curious creature.

Do you use Snapchat for advertising purposes and have you made money off it?
It has happened, but I think it’s important to state that I have never discussed things I don’t like myself and I never will.

Eva Ruza
Snapchat Handle: Evaruza

How many followers do you have?
I have 7,000 rocking followers.

Why did you start snapping?
It really happened by accident. I downloaded the app about two years ago, but I was such a novice that I didn’t know you could make it private. I was quite happy with having 30 followers, but then all of a sudden followers started pouring in, I couldn’t really understand it. But I thank God that I didn’t have many followers in the beginning, especially since people didn’t see the snap I sent to my friends where where I was shaking my tits.

What do you think you do differently which makes you more popular than others?
I don’t know how to answer that question. My snaps are mainly about having to deal with shit and doing missions. I also don’t take myself too seriously and I try to make people laugh, while they watch this little TV station called evaruza. I also never censor myself and live by the motto, If it isn’t fun I don’t do it. The Eva Ruza people see on Snapchat is the girl that exists in real life.

Why do you think people have an interest in following strangers on Snapchat?
It’s a really interesting medium, because followers are allowed an enormous access to the person they follow. People feel like they know you and I always love when people come up to me on the street to say hi. I think people start out by being curious, but then connect to shared humour, work and the like. It really is incredible.

Do you use Snapchat for advertising purposes and have you made money off it?
I try to keep my Snapchat as much away from ads as possible, simply because I’m bad at it and don’t enjoy it. I think I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of products I have told people about. I have, however, done snaps for companies and had some fun with that, but then people know the purpose.

Helga Gabríela
Snapchat Handle: Helgagabriela

How many followers do you have?
I have around 10,000 followers at the moment.

Why did you start snapping?
It started with curiosity because it was such a new medium. But then I noticed that people were extremely interested in what I was doing in the kitchen and then I really started to enjoy it.

What do you think you do differently which makes you more popular than others?
I have a really hard time evaluating it, truth be told I haven’t spent much time contemplating it. But I mainly snap because I am passionate about it. Cooking is both my job and biggest hobby. I am a real health freak as well and I hope that comes across.

Why do you think people have an interest in following strangers on Snapchat?
I think people are naturally curious and wants to know what others are doing. It’s just something in our nature and probably always has been. It’s also a form of entertainment. Smartphones have become a vital part of our lives and Snapchat is just one of the things they offer.

Do you use Snapchat for advertising purposes and have you made money off it?
I have been asked to promote a variety of products, but I don’t want to do those sort of things unless the product is something I really like. But when I do I always make it clear that this is a promotion. I have not made any money from Snapchat, not yet at least.

Snorri Björnsson
Snapchat Handle: Snorribjorns

How many followers do you have?
I have seen snaps that have been viewed up 30,000 times, but I don’t have an exact figure.

Why did you start snapping?
In 2015, I was asked to film the Icelandic team at the CrossFit Games and spent a month in LA documenting the games from A to Z. But I wasn’t allowed to film the actual games, so I started making Snapchats of the games and soon I had over 1,000 followers. You could say that was the beginning of my Snapchat adventure.

What do you think you do differently which makes you more popular than others?
I have a hard time putting my finger on anything specific, but people filter out accounts they don’t find interesting. It’s all about how well you tell stories, what you are doing in life and what you are showcasing. The biggest challenge is how to make everyday things interesting—like going to the dentist or changing a tire. If anything has given me an edge then I think it’s my feeling for how to present my material.

Why do you think people have an interest in following strangers on Snapchat?
Personally I am not really interested in following others on Snapchat, unless they have fun stories or are interesting characters. There are also some Snapchatters who discuss personal issues and things that are happening in their lives and their heads—I think those are the most difficult topics. People always want to get close to the lives of others—whether through reality TV or social media—and Snapchat is the closest you can get to a person.

Do you use Snapchat for advertising purposes and have you made money off it?
I have used it for advertising purposes, but I wouldn’t say that’s how I use it. When I have done it I have at the same time tried to create my most ambitious story. I reject around 99% of the offers I receive, because most of them are at odds with the aim of making fun videos. Every time I advertise I make it clear that I am. But I want to take the opportunity to make money through making fun videos. Then the advertiser, me and the viewer all benefit.

Hjálmar Örn Jóhannsson
Snapchat Handle: Hjalmarorn110

How many followers do you have?
Just under 10,000.

Why did you start snapping?
I finally found a medium where I could make sketches, shows and more without being dependant on editors, audio engineers and actors.

What do you think you do different which makes you more popular than others?
I do a lot of sketches and comedy material that is acted out. People have responded well to the characters I do, like Bjarni the chauvinistic excavator operator and the feminist Karl Önnusson Magnason Sigrúnarson.

Why do you think people have an interest in following strangers on Snapchat?
Curiosity about the lives of others, although that is probably not the case with me as I don’t really talk about my personal life.

Do you use Snapchat for advertising purposes and have you made money off it?
The money I make from Snapchat comes mainly from people asking me to host events or entertain at birthday parties and the like. I have done ads a couple of times, but I found it tiring.

Alexandra Sif Nikulásardóttir
Snapchat Handle: alesifnikka

How many followers do you have?
Around 6,000.

Why did you start snapping?
I got Snapchat long before it became a thing and to be honest I didn’t think it would last. But I wanted to use the app to share with people things I know—stuff related to makeup, living a positive and healthy lifestyle and so forth.

What do you think you do different which makes you more popular than others?
I don’t think I do anything differently, I am just myself and what you see is what you get. I also think my success in fitness has helped.

Why do you think people have an interest in following strangers on Snapchat?
You can learn a lot from following others on Snapchat, plus it’s always exciting seeing what other people are doing.

Do you use Snapchat for advertising purposes and have you made money off it?
I have not made any money from Snapchat, but I have had offers and have always refused. I have, however, advertised products I’ve bought or gotten for free. I don’t want to talk about products because I need to, but because I want to.

Read more about the influencers here. Add us on Snapchat—rvkgrapevine—for our influencers takeover.

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