It’s no secret that millennials now make up for the largest percentage of the population, outnumbering baby boomers in the US alone. It’s also no secrets that they have figured out the balance between work and life and that their spending habits are more focused on the current pleasures such as travel, fashion, leisure, technology and beauty products. They can also be accredited for both being the forefathers of the occupation that goes by the name ‘influencer’ as well as the term itself.
There are virtually hundreds of thousands millennial influencers out there, and probably the same number making efforts to become one. Now, the question that poses itself is – how does one manage to make social media platforms their own personal, highly lucrative playground? How do they attract sponsors and more specifically, how do they appeal to their followers and ‘convince’ them into purchasing a certain product and service. Those are the exact questions we’ll be answering today.
The target group
Being part of the millennial generation themselves, these young influencers know ‘their people’. They’re aware that they share at least approximately the same values and interests, so it’s not that difficult to speak to your audience as there is no age gap. The millennial influencer is aware that whatever he wants his followers to respond to is the same type of thing they themselves would respond to.
Aside from that, being the same generation as their followers, influencers immediately have that ‘starting’ vote of confidence and all they have to do from there is gain more credibility.
Investing in content
They don’t respond to paid advertisements and trust only authentic content. That is precisely why the influencer takes the time and effort to create great content – a blog post, a tutorial, a vlog, high-quality and inspiring Instagram posts, even interesting and candid Instastories. Managing these platforms is a full-time job and they never post anything short of perfection.
They know that their followers are not concerned with loyalty, at least not when it comes to whom they follow on social media, so in order to get the numbers up, and not down, they can’t afford risking it with content that leaves something to be desired.
Pushing a brand
A true influencer will never allow themselves to be sponsored by a brand they personally don’t like – it’s not good for their image and it makes it that more difficult to be convincing. However, knowing their audience, they will often promote vintage shops, second-hand stores that sell vintage dresses, blouses shirts and more, and often with no reimbursement at all – why? Because it’s good for their image; first, they help and indie brand or a vintage store gain popularity, which will hence ultimately become lucrative for them, and gain points for authenticity as they support brands which they aren’t sponsored by.
This is one of the crucial elements of trustworthiness – making it apparent that you’re a real person and not a sponsored robot.
Being aware that their peers don’t respond very well to advertisements, making sure a blog post that mentions a particular brand is authentic is paramount to their credibility. They make sure that they’re wearing a certain dress they truly like, genuinely enjoy a vacation, give their honest approval of a certain makeup brand. To take things further, in order to maintain their integrity, beauty bloggers for instance, will often give a negative review of a product, or at least point out certain flaws. One such example is the international You Tube sensation whose channel is called Nikke Tutorials. Even though she has gained massive following and even a collaboration with Ofra cosmetics, this beauty vlogger doesn’t shy away from telling the truth about a product. That’s what makes her followers love her and believe in her opinions.
Speaking of love, another way young influencers pave the way for themselves is by keeping their feet on the ground. That means that communication with audiences is of the utmost importance – replying to messages, not getting on a high horse, answering questions in the comment section, sharing genuine love – it takes all that and much more to keep the love of your audiences.
Rebel with a cause
One final, but in no way less important aspect is the choice of brands they choose to ‘advertize’. Knowing that millennials are increasingly staying away from makeup and cosmetics brands that still test on animals, or retailers who have a history of unethical practices and aren’t committed to sustainability, most smart influencers will stay away from these brands and focus on those with which they have shared values. This is firstly because they genuinely believe in environmental causes and secondly, they don’t want a riot among their following.
How savvy are the influencers you follow and how great is your trust in them?
By Sophia Smith