Want to be IG-ready? Check this Vietnamese influencer

This photograph taken on March 2, 2021 shows instructor Pham Kieu Ly (C) demonstrating a pose to participants during a course teaching them how to pose for photographs on their mobile phones at a studio in Hanoi. (Photo by Manan VATSYAYANA / AFP)

HANOI — How to smile, where to place a hand, which direction to face: Young Vietnamese social media users are snapping up a popular influencer’s course on posing for the perfect photo.

In communist Vietnam, where 70 percent of the population is under the age of 35, the classes are particularly popular among young women.


Pham Kieu Ly — who has hundreds of thousands of followers on Instagram and TikTok — set up the $130 course in Hanoi after women began asking her how to look their best in photos, largely for social media. Her lessons also cater to aspiring amateur photographers.

Ly told Agence France-Presse (AFP) she saw women in the class who wanted “to learn how to pose and take photos to help their work while others wanted to build confidence.”

Since her first class in September last year, Ly’s day-and-a-half-long tutorial has amassed a substantial following, attracting around 500 people from a range of professions, including online merchants and estate agents.

“The image I am aiming to create is one of a successful businesswoman,” said 29-year-old Nguyen Thi Thanh Loan, an employee of an insurance company who also wants to boost her photography skills through the course.

Other participants said they were convinced beautiful photos would help them sell products on Facebook, which has more than 53 million users in Vietnam—over half of the population. The platform has become a crucial marketing tool for local business.

Nguyen Huong Tra, 29, who runs a housewear shop and sells candles and scented oils online, said: “In the past I didn’t pay much attention to my images or number of followers on social media, but then I realized they are important to my business.”

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