Lee From America
Written by: Media Analyst, Sarah Johnson
A picture is worth a thousand words. But post that picture to Instagram, and it could be worth a thousand dollars- especially if you’re a social media influencer.
Carefully sprinkling chia seeds atop brightly colored smoothie bowls, taking a perfectly styled photo, and posting that picture for 265,000 followers to see is just another day at work for Lee From America and many other social media influencers.
Lee Tilghman, the 28-year-old writer turned content-producer behind @leefromamerica, has built a career as a social media influencer and blogger.
But in this one billion dollar industry that is expected to grow to two billion in just two years, what sets Tilghman apart? As a life-long fan and follower, I decided to take a deep dive into the reasons behind the success of Lee From America.
Number one- this girl knows what she is and what she isn’t. Although veganism has grown by 500% since 2014 in the US, Tilghman is not vegan nor does she pretend to be even though it’s one of the trendiest lifestyle choices in her industry. Her website greets you with the tagline “recipe developer, fitness lover, holistic lifestyle, and balancing hormones.” It doesn’t get much more straightforward than that.
Next up is consistency of posts. Though trite advice, you can’t effectively influence and engage an audience if you don’t post anything for them to engage with. Tilghman ensures she is posting regularly by publishing a new playlist every month (like this list of February favorites!) She also shares a list of intentions every month on her website in addition to posting daily, or multiple times a day, on her Instagram page. Consistency is key. To be a content creator you must create content regularly; this rule seems obvious but is so important.
One of the most important characteristics unique to the success of Lee from America is that she doesn’t always try to seem perfect or put together at all hours of the day. She wants people to see how the products she endorses really work in everyday life. Tilghman does this by keeping her Instagram story updated throughout the day. This gives followers a behind-the-scenes look into her morning meditation and weekly meal prep- and by only working with brands she truly believes in. While 92% of consumers already trust media like peer recommendations, similar to the recommendations given by Tilghman, only supporting brands she believes in serves to add to Tilghman’s credibility and trustworthiness.
At the end of the day, Tilghman has crafted an industry and a career built on her passions. She works with brands that she truly loves to promote a healthy and sustainable lifestyle. Influencers like Tilghman have done a great job of capitalizing on and monetizing their passions- in other words: making people envy them and shop accordingly.