People & Inspiration

In Focus: This Is How You Become The Ultimate 'Influencer'—Take It From Kris Aquino!

In Focus: This Is How You Become The Ultimate 'Influencer'—Take It From Kris Aquino!

As the undisputed Queen of All Media, it may be safe to conclude that Kris Aquino is the ultimate influencer, one who has predated and outlasted all those who seem to have popped out of nowhere. But, how was she able to make the transition into the digital landscape, a feat that not many have successfully accomplished?

It is clear that Kris takes her new venture quite seriously. Recognizing that she needed a fresher approach when it comes to the digital landscape, she formed an admittedly younger team who she collaborates with to come up with content for her audience. “They look at things differently,” confesses Kris, referring to her team, “Iba ang perspective nila and it opened up my eyes.”

In her new realm, Kris holds complete creative direction and she executes it with her distinct flair. In one of her shoots for her latest endorsement for Claritin, a product of Bayer, one can see that the queen is certainly in her element, multitasking with relative ease. It is a shoot that is refreshingly devoid of strain, one that almost feels like a morning spent hanging out in a close friend's house. There is a pleasant hum of activity through out the set, with an occasional burst of laughter punctuating the brisk movements of the crew. While her glam team works on her makeup, she consults with Bayer's in-house physician about the lines of her script. “All those years of doing TV, you know which sound bites are important,” she relates, explaining why she needs more clarification about a certain line. “You have to be prepared,” Kris says, “Hindi pwede yung you just winged it.”

Her fees, after all, are quite staggering, being one of the highest paid endorsers in the country. Kris recognizes that being an influencer is big business, first and foremost. “You have to be worth the money you're being paid.” It is a distinction that she intends to be worthy of, notably when it comes to her new venture. “Just because it's digital,” Kris relates, “It doesn't mean na hindi mo aalagaan ang quality.” She invested in the right equipment that would give the best output for her envisioned content. “Hindi talaga pwede magpakita ng anything na hindi maganda,” she relates, “Nag-invest kami, yan ang first buhos ng pera. Ilaw. Bumili ng magagandang camera, magandang lente. Yung second, sound: audio, lapel.

To be an effective influencer, Kris relates, one has to be credible when it comes to endorsements. This is the reason why, Kris explains, she takes pains in selecting which brands to work with. Having a clear notion about what she likes and dislikes is part of her secret and it is one she leverages with impunity. “Kasi, halatang-halata talaga sa akin pag pilit,” she laughs, “Hindi ako ganoon ka-talented na actress to pretend para matawid.” It is precisely this authenticity that has allowed her to connect with her audience who clamor for her unabashed yet charming witticisms on camera. “Kung ako mismo, hindi natutuwa sa ginagawa ko, how can I expect my audience to be engaged?”

She is also quick to recognize that in the fickle world of digital media, quality content is king. Thus, she is immovable when it comes to deadlines: “You create a habit. Kelangan, pag nasanay sila na ang posting is 8 PM, 8 PM talaga. Magkamatayan na.” Story continuity also matters. For a video that she is about to release for a particular brand, she confessed reviewing it over and over, checking for inconsistencies. She asks her editor to tweak some inconsistencies she spotted. “This is the make-or-break, this is the first. If you disappoint them on the onset, first impressions linger.”

She has a particular a mindfulness for everything that affects her new venture, including the people who represent her in contract negotiations. “You have to look the part,” she gently admonishes one of her staff about their wardrobe choices, “If you want them to pay us this amount, you have to look a certain way.” While this seems too nitpicky for some, there is a clear motivation behind her advice, one that harks back to her years of navigating through her very publicized life: “In this country, magiging problema mo and magiging responsible ka for the actions of somebody else,” shares Kris, “Magkaroon ka ng personal life 'pag hindi mo na kelangan kumita from a public life.”

[related: Fitspiration: Healthy Eating Doesn't Have to Be Boring—Just Ask Kris Aquino]

Obviously, one does not reach her pinnacle of success without acquiring some detractors. Kris recognizes this as an undeniable occupational hazard, but one that she has made her own peace with. “If you're ready to throw it at me, be ready for me to defend myself. I've learned to choose my battles," she relates, "And, I choose the ones where I feel that I have the right to defend my territory.” Kris quantifies this to mean throwing shade on her family's integrity and her children, or the legacy of her parents. “Yun talaga, hindi ko pinapalagpas,” she emphasizes, “There are things na kelangan mo panindigan.

[related: Daily Diaries: Calligraphy, Camping, And Other New Experiences Making Kris Love Life More]

At the end of the day, Kris boils her success down to one simple advice: own your brand. It is, after all, the one thing that you can rely on, no matter where the tides of fate lead you. “Identify your personality and your strengths. And, stick to that,” she advices, “Wag kang magpadikta. At the end of the day, you know yourself best.”

ALSO READ: In Focus: Here's Proof That Kris Aquino Is Just Like The Rest Of Us—Just With Much Better Skin

Photographs from the author, Bayer Claritin, and




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