The best way to learn anything is from the people who lived it, and with everyone living their lives a little more online these days, there are a lot of influencing lessons to learn. At nofilter, we’re not just covering the latest influencer drama (although there’s a lot of that, too), we’re also bringing you essays and interviews from people in the industry who have first-hand experience—and solutions—to some of influencing’s biggest problems.

This week, there was yet another development in the TikTok versus Trump saga, and people are understandably confused. We also chatted with a number of different creators, including Violet Sky, who only wears ‘80s clothing and only watches ‘80s movies and TV shows, too. 

Here are the top tips for influencers we learned this week.

Download TikTok before Sunday

Update 9/21: The app store ban of TikTok has been delayed after Trump approved of a deal between Oracle and TikTok—which doesn't actually accomplish any of the things he first demanded. 

When it comes to monetization, your passions are your best asset

When TikTok user Emmaline Carroll Southwell joined the platform, she had no intention of making money. She was simply using it as a place to document her family life in Melbourne, Australia. But then their family mantra about love and acceptance ended up going viral. Affirm Press saw the video and is turning it into a book. In an interview Southwell shared her advice for anyone else looking for similar success: “The words I wrote came from the heart (as cliché as that sounds), so just write what you’re passionate about, what interests you, what you love. When you do that, magic can happen.”

Celebrities can’t change Instagram

On Wednesday, around 30 celebrities boycotted Instagram as part of the #StopHateForProfit movement seeking to hold Facebook, its parent company, accountable for its inability to combat hate speech and misinformation. However, their “boycott” only lasted one day, rendering it wholly ineffective at pressuring Facebook to meet any of the campaign’s demands. Plus, my feed didn’t really miss them, anyways. 

Brands want you for you

Even though TikTok creator Erika Priscilla’s whole bit is making fun of influencers and brand deals, brands didn’t want her to change a thing when she got popular enough to do them herself. 

“I'm working with a couple of brands right now and they want me to make it the way that I've been doing it. They're like, ‘We want you to do it. We love the influencer [parody] thing,’” she told me in a phone interview. “Which I appreciate, but other times they don't really specify. I'll show off the brands or do whatever I have to do, but I'll always add a little comedic twist.”