Monday, 8 December 2014

Zoella: Entrepreneur or Marketing Tool ?

Titan vlogger Zoella staggered book charts as she hit the best sellers list for her debut novel, but it left me pondering and indeed doubting the sanity of the publishing world. 

Zoe Snugg released Girl Online last week with over 78,000 copies bought, a record-breaking number and nothing to be sniffed at. Being the same age as me, the young woman first began dishing out fashion and beauty tips back in 2009, before becoming a Youtube sensation with 6 million subscribers under her belt. 

With writers toiling over their work for years on end, struggling authors praying for their first publishing deal, and creative souls among us giving up after never being discovered, it left me wondering how a young lady could get this far this quickly. 

Zoella is, on the surface, an irrestitably cutesy figure. Tiny frame, perfectly placed dimples, impossibly silky, flowing hair and enough advice on anxiety to last you a lifetime, she is the embodiment of what teen girls look up to. But is there something deeper than simply someone behind a camera talking about something  she loves? 

The 24-year-old was today forced to take a break from the internet after it was revealed that she did not write Girl Online. Giving her game away by crediting ghostwriter Siobhan Curran at the back of her book, publisher Penguin then revealed that it was in fact Curran and Zoella's editorial team who created the novel. 

So what I hear you say.. Katie Price did it! Her pages couldn't be used as toilet paper. But do Sugg's fans care? And is this all a huge marketing ploy? 

After several ghostwriters turned down the opportunity to write Girl Online (one being offered £7,000, the other refused due to the mere 6 weeks it was planned to be written in), it's not hard to jump to conclusions about brand Zoella. 

Her blogs and vlogs are pumped full of products, beauty items are pushed as Sugg describes them creating unrealistically effective results. Rip down the facade and her blogging world is a gashed ruin of brand pushes so concentrated they have sucked the life from the talent she had. Originally a young woman with dreams of being a presenter, she is now a tiny doll, advertising a brainwashingly cute image that convinces teens to invest money they dont have in products they didn't want. The most difficult question of them all is, does Zoella even realise this herself? 

Entrepreneur or marketing tool? Has she changed the world of blogging as we know it?