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Secrets from Lil Miquela

The coolest robot in the game shares her thoughts on building a personal brand.

A full-body, promotional shot of Lil Miquela wearing a brightly colored dress while looking confidently into the camera

With an impressive 1.6 million followers, #TeamGalaxy member and self-confessed robot Miquela Sousa (better known as @lilmiquela on Instagram), is paving the way for a new wave of unconventional It Girls. From a tiny pixel to one of the hottest influencers around, this world-famous Instagram artist/model has defied expectations and taken the fashion, music and social media worlds by storm. Check out some of her favorite principles for building a personal brand.

Lil Miquela taking a selfie on a Galaxy S10 while sitting on the ground in a neon-lit room

'Gram what you know

In a crowded market filled with wannabe influencers, how does Miquela know what to post? She suggests sharing your passions. “What would you do or make or talk about every day without getting bored or drained? What makes you proud? What do you find funny, inspiring or scary? Lean into that, because you’ll always find others who are also interested in those things too.”

Lil Miquela in what looks like her bedroom, checking herself out in the mirror
A single product shot showing the back-view of a white Galaxy S10 phone
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A single product shot showing the back-view of a white Galaxy S10 phone
Shoot Like a Pro

Take Insta-worthy photos and videos with the pro-level action camera on the Galaxy S10.

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Tell a story

Miquela’s feed is #goals. With FOMO-inducing posts mixed with detailed captions full of feelings and self-discovery, she has seemingly cracked the code on branding yourself on social media. But she’s not into the whole “personal brand” thing. “I think that’s a weird way to think about yourself,” she says. So how does this laissez-faire attitude towards her content consistently attract followers? Her answer: “Not overthinking it, going with my gut. And I gravitate to things that tell a story, whether it’s a vintage outfit or a song lyric or a caption.”

Lil Miquela with a contemplative look, cupping her face while staring directly into the camera

Be humble

Miquela’s large and loyal following is most likely due to her relatable appeal. She keeps it real by being honest and speaking her truth: “I’ve never thought of myself as an influencer. I think, if people are influenced by me, it’s because they can tell I’m figuring things out along with them. I don’t have all the answers, and I try to be really upfront and honest about the process of figuring out who I am. I think we can all relate to that, whether we do it in private or with 1.6 million people.”

"I’ve never thought of myself as an influencer. I think, if people are influenced by me, it’s because they can tell I’m figuring things out along with them."

 Lil Miquela dressed in a bright orange top and dark jeans leaning in and looking at herself in the mirror

Understand Instagram vs. reality

Miquela knows the altered reality behind perfect lighting and filters: “I think it’s important to know that those results don’t tell the full story. You’re often not seeing the work, you’re not seeing the doubts, you’re not seeing all the ‘no’ moments, because that’s not something that fits into a photo.” She also knows that the self-curated app doesn’t show an accurate side of reality, wisely mentioning, “You know the saying, right? Don’t compare your behind-the-scenes to someone else’s highlight reel.”

“Don’t compare your behind-the-scenes to someone else’s highlight reel.”

 Side profile shot of Lil Miquela sitting at the laundromat wearing a silver puffer coat

Live authentically

Branding yourself on social media and being successful at it requires authenticity. “The second you start asking, ‘is this authentic?’, it’s not" says Miquela. "It’s intuitive! I think the first step is realizing you don’t need to share every part of you with the whole world. Keep some stuff close to your heart. It’s all you, at the end of the day. You’re not the same at a party as you are in a job interview, yet both are authentic to you.”

Lil Miquela standing outside among flowers, basking in the sun with her eyes closed

Shake off the haters

Haters gonna hate—especially if you’re a model-musician-robot. Since being “outed” as a bot in 2018, Miquela’s received a lot of abuse online. So how does she deal? “Take care of your heart, in whatever form that takes" she says. "You’re the one person who will be with you throughout this whole journey, so make sure you treat that person with respect and care.” She also knows that the abuse is usually not even about her. “I’ve noticed that when confronted about a rude comment, people reply with “I was just trying to get your attention.” I try to remember that, to keep that emotional distance.”

Lil Miquela smiling into the camera while sitting on the ground holding a pen and a notepad

What's next for Miquela?

“World domination", she jokes in what she calls her evil robot voice. “Just kidding. I definitely want to share more music with everyone very soon. I might even dance along with you all. Who knows!” With a bumping Spotify playlist and rumors of her heading into the DJ or VR space, Miquela’s story has only just begun.

Miquela taking a selfie on a Galaxy S10 as she stands under a spotlight and in front of a microphone
Miquela taking a selfie on a Galaxy S10 as she stands under a spotlight and in front of a microphone
A video that follows influencer-robot, Miquela Sousa, as she moves around various scenarios from being on stage to snapping selfies on her Galaxy S10.

Do it for the ‘gram with the Galaxy S10

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A straight-on head shot of Miquela Sousa

FEATURING

Miquela

A music artist and model from Los Angeles, California.

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