The Power of Authenticity: How the iGen and Influencers are Changing the Game.

A recent study by the Morning Consult, based on over 2,000 survey interviews within 13 to 38-year-old, was set up to explore the scale and nature of influencer engagement. By looking at which influencers young Americans follow, why they follow them and how much trust they have in influencers we can paint a pretty accurate picture of what actually drives young minds to make choices.

The study highlights how crucial influencers have become in the marketing game, so much so that an astounding 72% of the people interviewed admitted to follow several influencers compared to “regular celebrities”. This result could be due to the constant rise in popularity of platforms such as Youtube, Instagram and TikTok that are able to deliver massive amounts of engaging content in a fraction of the time that traditional media generally needs.

“Influencers have become a central part of social media for young Americans, and social media is an increasingly central driver of consumer decisions. Nearly three quarters of Gen Z and Millennials follow influencers on social media, and a majority say social media is where they most often learn about new products, they’re interested in.

Because of this, influencers provide brands with a key opportunity to reach young Americans – so long as they adequately understand how and where to engage them.”

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(Photo: Morning Consult)

Another possible explanation of this phenomenon can be found within the concept of Authenticity:  the study found that both Millennials and iGen’ers look for deeper connections with their role models and are more likely to get influenced if they perceive a sense of genuine care and raw authenticity, a feeling that they can relate because “they’re so real!”.

It will come as no surprise that more than 50% of the people interviewed put their trust in influencers they follow, on product recommendations, compared to 38% for their favorite celebrities.

Source: Morning Consult, The Influencer Report (November 2019)