Confronting with others is a precious resource to personal grow: it has always been and is even more important now, in the digital age, when the continuous exchange of informations enriches us as individuals and as a society. Macy Mariano (@wanderwithmacy), an American blogger who turned her passion into a full-time job, knows it well. Traveling is for Macy the primary source of inspiration and everything she learns from other cultures she shares with us, on her Instagram profile but also on her personal blog.
Old school influencer in this sense, she still believes in the potential of a private digital platform: it is your “room”, not only in a figurative sense, because the space is all yours and you give it shape by following your taste and your interests only.
We spoke with her about very interesting things and we exchanged opinions about the upcoming future. Perhaps Instagram won’t be here forever and most likely our interests will change millions of times. What is certain is that to remain inspired we have to keep going, always dreaming of the next destination.
In your bio you say “I have an eager habit of getting lost in different places in the right direction” – in my opinion a super interesting way to describe our contemporary society’s attitude in life. We like to get lost, follow the river and eventually discover we arrive in the exact place we were supposed to be. Would you describe your career as a blogger in the same terms? How did it start: did you plan it, or did it come by chance? I try to live with my career on those terms! I love discovering new places while on the right path, in the right direction. I feel like you learn as you go, so I may get lost for a while, but I trust the journey and my path. Soon, it will lead to where you are meant to be. I never planned it; I took an interest at first. A lot of trial and error. I was perusing a modeling career in Miami/LA but didn’t seem to go where I had thought. So, I experimented with social media, learned as I took steps, and made it to where I am now.
Moving from a metaphoric level to a more realistic one, you are mainly a travel blogger, right? Among others, traveling seems to be your first interest. What’s the best part of it? My niche, interests, and specialties are travel + style. I take my style everywhere I travel. Traveling is always an interest of mine, but at the same time, I’m such a homebody! However, whenever I have a chance to go somewhere, I take advantage. Best part about traveling for me it is learning and meeting people along the way. Whenever I travel, there is always some sort of experience I run into, whether it be bad or good. So, I always look forward to that.
What are the negative aspects of traveling – if there are some?
There are always some negative attributes, I think. Forgetting something, missed flight, high expectations, illness…I just look at it as a learning experience. I have lost my luggage before for 2 weeks, but hey it happened ha-ha. Lesson learned: don’t take that airline!
You could be described as a growing influencer: less followers but higher engagement. This part is nowadays the most powerful one, because you are able to reach a good percentage of followers, in a better way – a sort of 2.0 “less is more” philosophy. How is your relationship with your followers and how do you improve and maintain it?
My relationship is authentic. I feel I can be who I am, and they love that. I’m goofy, weird, and true. People see that in my stories. My feed and content; I have made a business out of, but I show my true self and daily routine through my stories, so my following can see who I really am. They have stuck with me, so I guess I’m doing something right!
Your followers are your public, and you create content for them. Do you ever learn from them as well and how? You’re the main voice of you channel but blogging should be a sort of open conversations, I think?
Of course! I do polls sometimes, to figure out what I should change, add, improve to get a feeling of what they want to see more of. If they have likes or dislikes, I want to know. Blogging for sure is more open to conversation, but recently on Instagram, I have tried to embed that in my captions as well. If I speak more, they will too. So, I have been trying that recently to see some feedback.
I just love the blue pants you wore in Soho some weeks ago, by Antik Batik. How do you choose brands to work with? Your style is well defined, so I think you choose pretty carefully what to promote.
Aw thanks! I loved that outfit too! Every time I get an email, or do brand outreach myself, I always try to lean more towards brands I can use in my daily routine OR wear in daily life. From this, I produce organic and authentic content, because hey, I’m actually using it! It would be a waste of time and potentially money for me and a collaborator to work together and then myself never using the item/product. So, I take my partnerships seriously and have been more selective than ever.
Having a strong personality and to be clear on your tastes are important for an influencer. It’s the only way to appear coherent and reliable to the followers. How do you see yourself in the future? Especially the ones of new generations of influencers? How would you give advice to aspiring influencers?
I see myself in the future doing something bigger than being an influencer. Then again, how long will Instagram be here? I am in high hopes that from what I am doing now, something big and impactful will take over my career. Not quite sure what, when, or how, but like I said: I trust my journey. I love what I do, and I know I work hard, so I am patient that something will come out of this! I am very positive for upcoming and future-generation bloggers! I think that now a days, they have everything at their fingertips. Anyone can become one if they have what it takes. By the way, it takes A LOT. I believe that we are underestimated by many, as what we do is NOT easy. We are lucky though! However, if you believe in yourself, have patience, and know what you love then you can do it! My advice to aspiring content creators is: BE YOURSELF ALWAYS. You may not think it, but it shows on social media. People pretend, judge, and compare every day. So why not just be yourself?
We talk about blogging, which is slightly different than influencing. You are an “old style” blogger, with a proper blog. What are the advantages a real blog gives, that Instagram does not offer?
I would say an advantage of an actual blog compared to Instagram is room. You have more room to write, experiment, learn, edit etc.…Whereas IG you write a caption and post. Blogs have more room and depth to show what you are trying to do or say. Blogs also I think give off more as to who you are, shows more about you and what you like. I mainly use my blog clearly for travel, because it’s what I like to do and I can write about anything and everything, short or long, from the smallest details expanding on the highlights. People can see and read about your details; and details are important!
words by Giulia Greco