Social Media Influencers

By Taylor Caesar ’19

Influencers: A Pretty Big Deal

Instagram is a social media phenomenon!For users, it’s all about authenticity and connecting with the people they follow. Social media influencers have taken advantage of many opportunities that Instagram can offer.

I spoke about the frequent updates in Social Media. Instagram has started to update more frequently. Right now it is similar to Youtube, Snapchat, and Facebook. The most recent updates of 2018 areIGTV and InstaStory. Instagram has more networking qualities than Youtube.Youtube contains many resourceful videos like tutorials, funny videos, storytelling for influencers to connect with their followers.

Followers enjoy and look forward to how real and honest influencers can be with them on a personal level. Many followers appreciate good and bad reviews especially when these influencers talk about products and services. They are share their experience and advise their followers by letting them know what is worthwhile in addition to encouraging followers not to waste their money on certain things.

Most influencers talk about building their brand and even ask their followers what they want to see and ask for suggestions which motivates the followers to stick around and also creates a wider audience. For some influencers it took years for them to get a huge following. For others all it took was one viral photo or video.

According to a survey by CollectiveBias, 70% of millennial consumers are influenced by the recommendations of their peers in buying decisions. We are in an era where social influencers can use their platform as a full-time profession. They get endorsements from companies who want them to promote their brand. These companies benefit from targeting different demographics so essentially it is helping them because it then diversifies the market.

YouTube seems to be the second most influential social media platform for purchases. 18% of consumers are influenced by YouTube regarding their purchases. On Instagram, companies start looking at these “influencers” when they have close to 10,000 followers. OnYoutube, Companies start paying you when you have 10,000 or more viewers. These companies benefit from targeting different demographics so essentially it is helping them because it then diversifies the market. In addition Influencers usually give their followers discount codes as incentives which allows companies to know who is effective with marketing. Consumer decision is impacted a lot by reviews and things like “unboxing videos” so anytime someone who watched the video and clicks the store link that rejuvenates money. Not only do they get money from consumers but brands like google pay the Youtubers money when they allow ads to be present during or in between their videos. Brands pay Youtubers for advertisement!

Student Activity

I had the class take a survey to ask basic questions on whether they use social media, if they shop online, if they like discounts, if they go on YouTube as a source for information. For the most part I got the responses I was looking for so I knew what I presented was well informative and well received. I talked a lot about influencers on Instagram and Youtube and how they talk about what it takes to build their brand. I mentioned that most of these influencers got popular because of a viral video or photo but for some of them it also took years to increase their following. Listening to what their followers what or suggest which keeps them coming back for more and gives them a wider audience. When giving this presentation I realized students reacting to the information as if it all made sense so I knew they were intrigued.


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II. Ashman, Rachel, Anthony Patterson, and Stephen Brown. 2018. “‘Don’t Forget to like, Share and Subscribe’: Digital Autopreneurs in a Neoliberal World.” Journal of Business Research 92 (November): 474–83. (