Ok so maybe I lied in the title, but hear me out. I view Kylie Jenner’s Snapchat story and like her Instagrams just as much as my best friend’s posts. I almost feel as though I know the ins and outs of her personality – but in reality, I only know the sides of her personality that she wants her viewers to see. So why are people so fascinated with following celebrities on social media? Although Snapchat has not released any specific stats, they have hinted that Kylie Jenner is the single most viewed user on Snapchat, and her app has been reviewed more than twice as many times as her sister’s platforms. Can the other Kardashian siblings keep up?
Upon visiting the Snapchat corporate offices, Kylie Jenner was told she is the most viewed person in Snapchat history. I follow Kylie Jenner on Snapchat, but I don’t necessarily click through every single story of hers unless I’m extremely bored. Some fans take
it to a whole other level. There are Youtube videos recounting her stories, making assumptions about what they may mean, and fan-girling over her latest hair/ makeup/ clothes/ etc. Kylie’s Snapchat stories often include either snippets of her relationships or previews for one of her new makeup collections.
Kylie gives viewers a look into her relationship with Tyga and his son (who’s baby mama is her brother’s wife…normal), her best friends, and the lifestyle she leads. She is infamous for posting videos, typically in a mirror or in the car, with her favorite songs blasting through the speaker. I won’t lie – I’ve definitely looked up a few of the better songs, but there’s also a “Kylie Jenner Radio” offered on her app as well as many Spotify playlists dedicated to the songs she plays.
Kylie Jenner has stated in an interview with her sister, Kim, that “I always like to give people what they want to see”. She goes on to say that “it’s not that I necessarily [want] to post all of my cars today. It’s that I know that people want to see that and live their life through ours”. If you’re interested in learning more about what Kylie has to say on her social media presence, click here.
Kylie Jenner has a hair extension line, a clothing line with sister Kendall featured at PacSun, and her new makeup line. Kylie has taken to social media in order to endorse all three of her lines, but most notably her makeup line. Kylie Jenner’s Snapchat stories often give sneak peaks at her newest makeup collection or hints at where the next pop-up Kylie store will be. Most stories feature her, again, blaring her favorite songs and swatching her newest palette onto her forearm. She shows on her story when exactly her products will be launching, so only fans who pay close attention seem to have the opportunity to purchase the products.
By doing so, Kylie has created an incredibly high demand for her makeup products. Most of the merchandise sells out within minutes. Kylie has also successfully added clothing, phone cases, and pretty much anything else she can put her logo on into her collection. My personal favorite is a t-shirt in which she capitalized on the many memes and gifs making fun of her for saying in an interview that 2016 would be a year for “like realizing stuff”. Overall, Kylie Jenner has utilized her social media in order to promote her products before they’re available and create an adrenaline rush for fans able to purchase her products before they sell out.
Each of the Kardashian sisters has their own mobile application, and each has different features based on their lifestyle and day-to-day activity. I don’t personally have any of the applications, but the app store shows that each application costs $2.99 per month. So what exactly is the viewer paying for? It seems as if they’re paying for more – more makeup tutorials, more personal interviews, more connection to the celebrity. One of my friends has both Kim Kardashian and Kylie Jenner’s applications. When asking her why she pays for both applications, she stated “as a girl and a fan I’m interested in Kylie Jenner and the rest of the Kardashians for makeup, hair and fashion trends and inspiration.”
So what is the fascination with Kylie Jenner and other celebrities on social media?
Are we bored with our own lives? Probably. Is there a benefit or value-add here? Nope. Do we look for inspiration? Maybe, but most of us certainly can’t afford the same lifestyle as the celebrities we follow.
My guess is that fans want to feel some sort of genuine connection to celebrities. By getting more access and view into famous people’s thoughts, actions, and relationships, maybe we can feel closer to the person. I want to clarify two things here.
- Kylie Jenner and the Kardashian sisters are not the only celebrities that have dominated social media. Look at Chrissy Teigen on Twitter, or Lauren Oshie on Instagram. Lauren Oshie isn’t famous for anything other than being married to hockey player TJ Oshie, and yet she has 152,000+ Instagram followers.
- The obsession/fascination with celebrities is not new. People have always been crazed over celeb’s lives – but social media has fueled the obsession and given fans much more accessibility to the rich and famous.
I think that Kylie Jenner in particular has truly capitalized on social media and used it to enhance both her personal and makeup brand. As the youngest of the sisters, it could be that she grew up with social media as a more integral part of her life, or maybe she just simply is a social media mogul. I’m curious to see how she uses social media as she grows older, and whether social media can sustain her brand image in the long term.