With social media at the fingertips of people all over the globe, many individuals have been able to gain a true influence in society through attaining an increasing group of followers on these platforms, especially those in the field of direct selling. This study examines the strategies that direct selling distributors use on social media to personally brand themselves and build relationships which result in them being successful social media influencers for their direct selling organizations. In particular, I conducted a series of 40-minute interviews with various distributors about their day-to-day social media use. The first overall theme that surfaced from the analysis of their interview responses was the importance of keeping a constant presence on social media, specifically through keeping a consistent image on the platforms, utilizing a variety of features, and being active on the right platforms in the right way by understanding the platform audiences. Another theme was that these distributors build relationships with their users in order to maintain a positive personal brand. Relationship building occurs through the use of emojis and voice messages, showcasing the unedited pieces of everyday life through different features, and responding to user posts.


Johnson, Michelle


Communication Studies


Social Media Influencer, Direct Selling, Online Personal Branding

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



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