In recent years, the rise of social media has led to the emergence of a new type of celebrity: the digital influencer. These individuals, often from Generation Z, have amassed large followings on platforms such as Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube, and use their online presence to promote products, brands, and even their own personal lifestyles.
But what is it about Gen Z and digital influencers that has made this phenomenon so successful?
What are Gen Z and digital influencers?
One reason is the increasing reliance on social media and the internet in general among Gen Z. Born between 1997 and 2012, this generation has grown up with technology and the internet as an integral part of their daily lives. They are the first generation to have never known a world without the internet, and as such, they are comfortable using it for everything from communication and entertainment to shopping and learning. The rise of digital influencers has also given Generation Z a new avenue for self-expression and creativity. Many young people are using social media as a platform to showcase their talents and share their interests, whether it be through art, music, dance, or any number of other activities. By following and engaging with digital influencers who align with their own passions and values, Gen Z can feel more connected to a community and find inspiration for their own creative pursuits.
Effect of social media technology
This comfort with technology has made Generation Z the perfect audience for digital influencers, as they are more likely to trust and follow individuals who they feel they can relate to and who they see as experts in their respective fields. Gen Z is also known for valuing authenticity and seeking out authentic voices, which many digital influencers strive to present on their social media channels.
Another factor contributing to the rise of digital influencers is the increasing importance of social media in the world of marketing. Brands have long recognized the value of word-of-mouth marketing, and social media has provided a new platform for this type of promotion. By partnering with digital influencers, brands can tap into their large and engaged followings and promote their products or services in a way that feels more organic and authentic.
Gen Z as digital influencers
For Gen Z, following and engaging with digital influencers can also serve as a form of escapism and inspiration. Many digital influencers present an idealised version of their lives, showcasing luxurious vacations, fashionable outfits, and exciting adventures. For those who follow them, this can provide a sense of aspirational living and a way to escape the daily grind. In addition, the content created by digital influencers can often be educational or informative, providing Gen Z with new ideas and perspectives
However, not all is rosy in the world of digital influencers. There has been a growing concern over the authenticity of these individuals and the impact they may have on their followers. Some have been accused of presenting a false or overly-edited version of their lives, leading to unrealistic expectations and potentially harmful behaviour.There have also been instances of digital influencers promoting products or services without disclosing their relationships with the brands, leading to accusations of unethical practices.The idealised version of life presented by some digital influencers can lead to feelings of inadequacy or anxiety among their followers, particularly if they feel pressure to live up to these unrealistic standards. In addition, the constant comparison to others on social media can take a toll on mental health.
Despite these concerns, it is clear that digital influencers are here to stay, and their influence will likely only continue to grow. Generation Z and digital influencers have formed a strong bond, with many young people looking to these individuals for inspiration, entertainment, and even guidance. It will be interesting to see how the relationship between Gen Z and digital influencers evolves in the coming years.
Looking to connect with influencers? WhizCo is India’s leading influencer marketing agency. WhizCo bridges the gap between creators and Brands and helps brands execute unforgettable influencer marketing campaigns and helps them grow online. WhizCo offers a complete solution to brands for running campaigns- from shortlisting, evaluating and onboarding influencers, to gathering feedback and performance tracking- All this coupled with years of expertise in managing thousands of creators and executing multiple campaigns at once.
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