The Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) is receiving backlash for bestowing the first-ever Influencer Award to Kim Kardashian West—a woman who sparked so many controversies and made social media headlines. They disputed over her fashion cred and to some extent, questioned the tastemakers that sat within the council. But I dare ask: What's with all the hate? Make no mistake. I am not a fan of Kim K. and never have I looked at her for fashion inspo. But we can't deny Kim's authority in the digital world. Below, we listed a number of reasons why she deserved that CFDA award.
1. Kim Kardashian West in numbers.
Let's break down her social media reach: 112 million Instagram followers, 60.1 million Twitter followers, 30 million on Facebook, and 1.2 million YouTube subscribers. And, oh, she has her own mobile app and mobile games. #EnoughSaid.
2. Kashing in the #ad, #collab, and #spon content.
If Kim isn't an online powerhouse, then why would brands choose to align with her by buying her Instagram posts? Michael Heller, CEO of digital marketing firm Talent Resources shares with US Weekly that brands pay up to $500,000 dollars to reach her massive online following.
3. She peddles her own ventures via social media.
Kim isn't just an online or reality star, she's a digital savvy business mogul. She continuously uses her platforms to promote products in which she has equity, like Kimoji and LuMee phone cases.
It's also noteworthy to point out that Kim can sell just about anything, even perfumes (without anyone knowing how they really smell). Oh and btw, she's dropping a new line of lipsticks. Bet you a hundred bucks they'll be gone in a sec.
4. Her selfies and derriere.
Let's be clear: Kim's body is not the representative of every woman's and she has not exactly made a lasting impact in terms of body inclusivity. But you have to applaud her for her ownership over her body. I mean, who else can make a perfume bottle fashioned after one's very naked body, right? And how could we forget that she published a book of her selfies?
Plus, let's recognize Kim's honesty in her acceptance speech when she said, “I’m kind of shocked I’m getting a fashion award when I’m naked most of the time.” From this sly remark, we can attest to her openness over her sexuality which in a way, is an empowering voice that echoes in her every post.
5. KKW army in the making.
Okay, maybe not an army, but look-a-likes. Remember this woman who spent a lot just to look like Kim? If that's not influential enough for you, I don't know what is.
Kidding aside, I think the crux of the issue here is not about Kim K's influence in the world wide web. Her effect on the online world is almost irrefutable (see list above). What's to be cleared out is essentially what her award means. Is it her influence on fashion per se or is it her capability of making the rest of the world curious as to what's au courrant and en vogue?
Truth be told, it baffles me her feat drew so much flak. Isn't she the epitome of what an influencer is? Whatever she wears, uses, or puts out there gets bought and consumed, essentially benefiting those who are associated with her. She's been on magazine covers and sat front row at many fashion shows just so designers and brands could reach her 112 million followers. If anything, she's an effective vehicle of everything trendy and hot. To me, Kim has changed how we view fashion—maybe through a whole lot of latex and sheer pieces—but hey, if Kim Kardashian thinks it's cool enough to wear bike shorts with heels, maybe we can, too.