WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- The University of Southern California now considers influencing as more than a hobby.
- Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism opened a class last year to teach students how to become influencers and content creators.
- The influencer industry was valued at 8 billion dollars in 2019 and is projected to grow up to 15 billion dollars by 2022.
The University of Southern California offers a program wherein students are trained to become influencers and content creators. There are no specific majors in this program, but the university now considers influencing a legitimate career path for today’s students. The details of this new program are published by NBC News.
The course was offered last year at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism by Prof. of Strategic Public Relations, Robert Kozinets.
“I think we’re just starting to see this emerge into the phenomena that it’s going to become. So I think this is a huge area. I can tell you the students who are focusing on these areas are not having a problem finding jobs here in Los Angeles and in other places,” Kozinets told NBC. “They’re in demand.”
The influencer industry was valued at 8 billion dollars in 2019, and is projected to grow up to 15 billion dollars by 2022, Business Insider reports.
The proposed syllabus is a marketing curriculum largely modernized. The course focuses on brand management across different social media platforms, not lessons on how to become an influencer.
There is also an organization for influencers called “Reach” inside the university that is harder to get into than class offered since the membership screening process is highly selective, only admitting 10 students per semester.
Reach is structured to train its members on how to build a personal brand and then market that persona on social media. Today, this craft is highly profitable but it can also be infallible.
Influencers could also be canceled easily after one wrong move. The largest college admissions scandal in the country recently leads to numerous sponsorships lost and canceled contracts for the youngest daughter of Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli, Olivia Jade from USC. This stemmed from her involvement in this scandal.
No matter the controversy, it might seem that the tide is still in favor of influencers today. There have been projections on the continuing rise of influencing in Forbes.
“In the new decade, expect to see influencer marketing surge”, Amine Rahal says.