THE INTRICACIES OF INFLUENCING - AN INTERVIEW WITH LAUREN BATH
Lauren Bath is one of Australia's top Instagram travel influencers. More than this, she is a prolific writer, photographer, educator, speaker and general bastion of the industry.
Ohkari had the pleasure of catching up with Lauren about her journey, lifestyle and new things on the horizon.
As what you do is so intertwined into your life’s journey, how do you manage your work / life balance?
To be honest I don’t have a work/ life balance and I used to stress out about that and attempt to put limits on how much I work but I have learned that it’s not important when you are doing what you love. Work that truly inspires and drives you.
These days the main attempt I make at balance is to balance the jobs that I take to make sure I am never bored or complacent. I do a lot of travel work as an influencer and photographer but I also love public speaking and educating so I make time to work at conferences and events. I’ve also gotten much better at booking my own personal trips so that I can shoot with less pressure. Overall I’d call what I do a lifestyle, my work is a part of me.
If you were in any other line of work, what would it be?
Well I used to be a chef and I’d say that cooking is a passion I’ll never grow out of. Although I would never go back to working for a boss there’s no reason why I wouldn’t some day open my own little place and cook whatever I damn please. haha
Everyone has off days. What advice would you give to someone finding it hard to step out of their comfort zone?
Everyone most definitely has their off days and I see it in this industry a lot. Even with my hardy personality I have days where I question all of my life choices. The best advice I can give is to just ride the waves. If I’m having a particularly bad day I’ll schedule some time to just watch a movie or read. If I’m out on a job and I don’t have that luxury then I’ll focus on just creating and leave social media and emails alone for the day. Basically you just have to try and look at the bigger picture and if you’re working in a job that fills you with purpose and you’re doing the right things in life then the hard work will pay off even if you have the odd rough day.
Would you like to share any of your new projects with us? Will the bootcamp be coming to the USA or Europe?
The Travel Bootcamp is my conference for aspiring instagrammers, bloggers and writers and I run it with two amazing business partners. We started it to actually be able to give back to the community and to strengthen industry standards in the incredible new field of influencer marketing. We are actually taking a month off at the moment but will be getting back together soon to discuss plans for 2018. One massive new project that we are considering is an online version, to enable us to reach and help even more people.
Apart from that I have my own online photography course being released this year and I’m also working on a plan to run photography tours in Zimbabwe.
One piece of travel gear or kit you wish existed?
One lens that has all the focal lengths and is f2 and portable. Can you imagine? From fisheye to 1000mm at f2 in the size of one regular lens. Argh, if I could invent that I would be rich!
What made you leave your career as a chef and enter the tech and travel game?
For me it was the lack of career advancement opportunities in the hospitality industry and the potential to do something really new and really fun. I think if I was still happy as a chef I couldn’t have been swayed into a new path so the timing was definitely right. From the very start I looked at this as a possibility to live the life of my dreams and I literally wrote my biggest passions onto a piece of paper and made my business decisions based on them. They were photography, travel and social media.
Your instagram profile is prolific, with awesome content. Do you have any advice for other travel instagrammers just starting out?
The one piece of advice I give to everybody that thinks I have the best life ever is to ask themselves if they like my job or if they like the ‘thought’ of my job. Because I can tell you that this is the hardest thing I have ever done and it has come at a big cost to my relationships and health. Luckily I have managed to balance that out but I definitely still have work to do. Basically if you do decide that you want to get into this industry the first thing to do is to grow your online influence and to grow it naturally and for the right reasons. People genuinely look at being an influencer as an overnight career choice and they take short cuts to get their online numbers to the right place and then launch themselves in without questioning how the industry actually works. Grow your influence because you love to share and then learn the ropes of the industry you want to work in (The Travel Bootcamp is a great resource) and then work your way in professionally and respectfully.
8. What are the five most important things that you take with you on a journey?
My camera, my computer, my mobile phone, my passport and my credit card.
9. If you could disappear to anywhere in the world, where would it be?
I’d disappear/ stay in Australia. I love my country and there’s so many wonderful places to get lost.