Two weeks ago, I embarked on a 10 day adventure around Egypt with 8 of our incredibly talented influencers (@christinagalbato, @choosingchia, @explorerssaurus_, @haylsa, @lisahomsy, @mvandersluis, @professionaltraveler). The whole point of this trip was to put emphasis on what Boost Society is and what we represent as a community (Next Week: Deep dive into Boost Society). This trip created an opportunity for creators from all around the world, some who have not even met before, to experience a new country with like minded individuals.
I will be honest…I was a bit worried headed into the trip. Being a manager myself and not an influencer (hence the ‘Newuencer’ in the title), I was not sure what to expect or what my day to day would look like. The day before I took off, my mind went a mile a minute. What scenarios will I be put in? What is the timeline of our activities? What content do the creators owe? These are all the questions I’ve asked myself a million times in my work.
But why was I so freaked out? I was finally about to experience the process it takes to deliver the content of the partnership I help these influencers out with. From start to finish I was about to witness and be apart of the whole creative process behind the influencer world.
Well, I recruited back up. At that time, I thought I needed someone in the middle to ease my transition. Cue, Justin Manabat (@jmanabatoriginals) to the rescue. He is an incredible photographer/videographer, a friend, and bonus…had also never been on an influencer trip before. He was there to record the behind the lense experience us ‘outsiders’ don’t get to see, or influencers don’t get to share. I am not going to lie, it was nice to have Justin to glance over at and be like “holy s***, look at this!”
All of the sudden we were in Egypt sitting down for our first group dinner and briefing with our tour guide, Sam, from Travel Talk Tours. We later discovered, he was the most incredible tour guide you could ever ask for. So there I am, sitting at the dinner table, surrounded by some of the most talented creators and I was busy trying to read the room. How was this going to go? What does a day as a travel influencer entail? Where would I fit in? Could we all build a special bond/community? I think almost everyone was just as curious as I was, as none of the team has ever been on a trip of this size before.
The next morning was the start of our 10-day adventure across Egypt, and it all began with what you would expect from Egypt…pyramids. We headed to our first location and I think everyone was a bit unsure as to how it was suppose to go. First off, we were there as a team, but secondly, we were there to get content for each creator. Within 20mins after arriving, everyone had shot off into their own direction, cameras in hand. I was a bit amazed to be honest. It was as if everyone had already decided their exact shoot locations during the walk through tour and presentation. My first assumption was their mindset was more about work than about truly realizing where they were standing… the freaking Great Pyramids in EGYPT!
It was like this all day, everyday. I quickly came to realize, content creating is hard work. They just kept shooting and shooting. They would check out the picture, and if it wasn’t just right or the way they wanted it, they would head back to shoot it again. Every individual had their own style and process. It was pretty awesome to be able to witness how each influencer got those famous shots we see all over the internet. The behind the scenes process was fascinating. Everyone worked differently but everyone worked hard. That team bonding and community I was hoping to achieve came true. Everyone found their partners right off the bat, that would end up helping them with shooting during the rest of the trip.
Some took their time, made sure the shot was right, others knew right off the start what they were looking for and went and got it. Not one was better than the other, but rather it was extremely interesting to see how each creator was was unique in their approach, all the way down to the camera they used and the way they shot.
Day 1-3 went by extremely fast. That question I asked earlier, “what does a day as an influencer entail?”, well I was witnessing it, and it was busy. We were all exhausted by the time we woke up on the 4th morning. We had been up for sunrise and jumped from location, to the van, to another location, all day long. We missed meals, got little sleep, but the experience was totally worth it. We saw the Great Pyramids, the Nile, a Nubian Village, multiple different temples, including Abu Simble, which was such an incredible monument, with an insane history and story behind the creation of it.
We even slept one night on a cruise ship ON THE NILE! I had originally thought that maybe it was not the right fit for us, why? Well, because 10 of us were sleeping on one MASSIVE mattress on a sailboat, on the edge of the Nile where we couldn’t run away from each other (haha). Sam, our tour guide, convinced the entire team that sleeping on the Felucca, was going to be a worthwhile experience. He was not wrong. We finally had an opportunity to not only enjoy and take in this amazing country we were so privileged to visit but also time to enjoy each other. It gave us a small window to unwind and put down the cameras in the middle of the trip.
Honestly, besides the felucca cruise, the middle of the trip was a blur. Everyone was so focussed! We had such a jammed packed itinerary, we didn’t have anymore time to relax or appreciate being in Egypt together. It was go, go, go. As you would assume in the influencer world. We had for the influencers, just a day in the life, opportunity to watch the sunrise in a hot air balloon. For the ‘Newuencers’, this involved a 4 am wake up call to the chance of a lifetime flying hundreds of feet above Egypt and watching the sun come out. Being with that group of people, in that balloon together, will be something I will never forget.
Our trip came to a close in Dahab. This is a beach town on the edge of the Red Sea. The best part about Dahab was the opportunity to disconnect and in the influencers case, take a break from work. There were multiple activities where cameras and cell phones were not needed or could not be used. We got to try new things together as a team, like scuba diving in the Red Sea, which I believe everyone should try. We had dinner in the mountains, cooking over a fire with no light other than the moon and best of all no cell service. It was the first time we all just sat and took a breath. We were able to express to one another the gratitude we felt for the fact that we were in Egypt, that we created a community and were surrounded by such an amazing group of individuals.
This location gave me the opportunity over the last couple of days to speak to everyone about how they started, where they are now, and what they are thinking for the future. To hear people from all around the world, with such different histories and personalities, come together and discuss their passions, was truly an amazing conversation to be a part of. I can now say, I was successful in completing my mission on this trip. The team of creators came to the conclusion that this is an important piece of the influencer market. Building connections and a community is an integral part of their work. Therefore the team wants to continue to do more trips and experiences together.
Check out next week to see what is Boost Society’s mission and how we think building a community is so important.
Overall, it was such an accomplishing experience. As an entrepreneur myself, I can say that it is a wild ride building and growing your business, in my case, Boost Society. Egypt was one of the most amazing feelings for me. To start with one influencer on the roster just a few years ago, to now be in the middle of the desert with 8 of our team was surreal. It was great to see the team posting about Egypt and giving their insights into safety, dress code, experiences, and much more. It was nice to see the team had truly enjoyed their trip and were excited to share Egypt with their communities.
I have to end this by telling each and every one of you something that is super important. Everyone thinks influencers live such glamorous and easy lives, but to be honest, it is not that way at all. I watched our team for 10 straight days, and I can tell you, there is nothing easy about what they do. Sure they shoot photos and post on Instagram, Youtube, or TikTok, but their mindset is very different than a normal individual heading out to shoot a photo. They put a lot of stress on how great their content is, so that you all love it as much as possible. They rely heavily on giving their audiences amazing content and advice, since their whole business revolves around this. Imagine having to be ‘ON’ every single day, 365 days a year and be posting about all aspects of your life on social media, whether you feel up to it or not.
Sure being an influencer has a ton of perks, but it is not for everyone. It is a tolling job that can really change a person. I think there are a ton of positives to social media. It allows these creators to connect with a worldwide audience, but we all know, some members of those audiences are not always nice. Some of the words and statements made against our team throughout their careers have been quite hurtful and it has definitely changed some of them, permanently. These are the tough things most people do not see. So the next time you hear someone say, “oh man, influencers got it easy!”, just remember, it is a lot harder than you could ever imagine.
To the influencers reading this, I appreciate the work you do from start to finish. To those of you, who live outside of the influencer lifestyle, make yourself a ‘Newuencer’ and I challenge you to live just one day in the life of an influencer.
I am very proud to call each and every one of these creators a part of Boost Society and also to call them my friends. The Boost Society 2019 Team Trip was a success. Are there things we can work on for next year, yes of course, but I definitely feel like this was an amazing beginning to a new trend and one I hope to be able to share with many more creators over the years to come.
Check out the Boost Society Egypt video HERE.
Let me know in the comments where you have travelled recently! Who did you go with and how was the experience based on what you imagined it would be?
Keep an eye out next week for why Boost Society was started, how we view the industry as it is today, and how we plan on changing it!