Talent (for e.g. model, actor, influencer, videographer etc): model, influencer
Occupation (for e.g. Teacher/Model): model, baker, property manager
Location: Bali, Indonesia & Manila, Philippines
How long have you been a talent on TRF: Since August 9, 2023
1. What inspired you to become a (model/influencer) and how did you get started in the industry?
I was inspired to model ever since I watched America’s Next Top Model when I was a little girl. My parents were quite strict about letting me explore my interests because they wanted me to finish my studies first. My first year of university, I was scouted by a friend’s booker and started going to castings! I was an avid reader of magazines back then as well and saw the credits of the editors and creatives and I added them on Facebook. One editor, Sam Potenciano of Candy Magazine, started booking me regularly and other magazines from the same publishing house started hiring me as well. I’m forever grateful to those who saw the potential in me!
2. Can you walk us through a typical day in your life as a (model/influencer) from start to finish?
My morning starts at 6I do my morning routine, prepare my coffee for my wife and I, feed the dogs, tidy up the kitchen and do some laundry. By 8:30, I’ll start getting ready for work (I manage a property in Bali). At 1pm, I hit the gym and by 2:30pm, I freshen up and have lunch. I shoot some content for clients or personal use in the afternoon or edit some for submission. 5:30pm, I start making dinner and relax for the rest of the night!
3. Are you a (model/influencer) full-time/part-time, or casually? And how do you manage your finances and what strategies have you found most effective?
I work casually as a model and content creator. I’ve worked in the industry for about 12 years and I’m exploring a new career outside of it. I currently have a part-time job and for the first time in my life, I have a regular monthly income. Being a model is such a freelance lifestyle that some months the income can be high, other months, barely any depending on the season. It can be stressful. Luckily, I’ve always had the habit of saving. I make sure I have enough to cover my recurring expenses for a few months. I rarely shop. Most of the clothes and makeup I have are from collabs or as part of the payment for a job. Saving really helped me during covid when work was very limited and I was previously in Bali.
4. What types of brand partnerships have you worked on in the past, and how do you decide which collaborations to take on as a (model/influencer)?
I’ve worked with brands such as Pantene, Canon, Smart Telecom, and more. When I was vegan, I also had to decline partnerships for milk products, fast food, or any brands that use animal products/testing. The brands I mainly work with now are slow fashion, small/sustainable businesses, brands that have diversity representation.
5. Can you share any tips for negotiating rates with brands, and how do you determine your own value as a (model/influencer)?
Oooh, this is always the tricky part for me! I think having a bare minimum rate for the type of job/project depending on the materials used is a starting point. I consider which country the brand is based on as they can have different budgets - I’d say this is one of the big factors. I also take into consideration my years of experience in the industry. The formula changes but this would be my starting point.
6. How do you stay updated with industry trends and best practices as a (model/influencer), and what resources do you rely on for education and inspiration?
I’m lucky enough that some of my friends also have the same line of work and they are open to sharing some insight of their previous/future work. Tiktok and some reels can be very educational when used correctly. I also make use of free online courses on udemy or coursera for topics in marketing and social media strategy. There are so many free resources out there, best to make use of them!
7. Have you faced any challenges or setbacks in your career as a (model/influencer), and how did you overcome them?
One of the biggest challenges I faced was definitely trying to adapt to social media. I think halfway through my career, I noticed a shift in the industry, clients were interested in people with an online presence/following. Suddenly, getting booked on jobs wasn’t about a model’s portfolio anymore and focused solely on the amount of followers one may have. It was frustrating because I worked so hard to build a strong portfolio and my professional photos did not exactly translate to social media at first. In short, I had to create a different portfolio that would translate through this new platform. To overcome this I re-evaluated what would work on socials and also by taking breaks from social media was helpful in overcoming stress and the pressure. As a model/influencer I always strive to create content that feels in-line with my values and who I am; regardless of what new obstacles may come my way.
8. How do you achieve work-life balance as a (model/influencer), even when life throws unexpected challenges your way?
I think allowing myself to take a pause if needed and prioritizing my mental health was the best thing I could do. I also choose which brands I work with now, which provides great flexibility in my schedule. Remaining professional with everyone I work with is something I have always strived for. I also try to find a job in the process no matter how challenging it may be!
9. What advice would you give to aspiring (model/influencer) who are starting out and looking to build a successful career in the industry?
Find what you love and figure out what your core values are and align yourself with people and brands that have the same vision. Collaborate with different artists and just have fun with it! This approach will help you build your portfolio, connections, and broaden your creative mind. This might be a curveball, but I also believe a better mind, better motivation; that's where a therapist could also help. I think mental health should be talked about more in this career avenue as it can be a very cut throat industry. You definitely need thick skin in order to thrive. Having a good support system could help in the longevity of your career and it will help you communicate better, as well as have confidence in advocating for yourself.
10. How do you see the (model/influencer) industry evolving in the next 5-10 years, and what changes do you anticipate?
I think there’s still room to grow for a more inclusive space for various representations. It’s already present now, but it’s still fresh in my opinion. Social media marketing will still continue to grow but shift into people wanting to connect to the values of the influencers. Asking the question “How does the product/brand add value to my life?”.
The rise of new realistic AI models is also another one, I find it crazy and will definitely be challenging as real people would be competing with AI; but I think it will circle back if people connect with working with real people and having a certain look to their campaign.
11. Can you share any upcoming projects or partnerships that you're excited about, and how do you plan to continue growing your brand as a (model/influencer)?
I am starting the New Year with my calendar open for new partnerships! I am excited to focus on creating content for brands that I genuinely love and use. I have a few ideas for filming that I’m ready to execute; 2024 is my year of consistency!
Marianne’s remarkable journey, balancing the realms of being a model and influencer exemplifies the potential of dedication, authenticity, and adaptability. Their story encourages us to pursue our passions, maintain unwavering determination, and forge our own unique path.