Influencer Marketing Trends Across Multiple Generations

Age-Specific Influencer Marketing: Connecting with All Generations

Age-Specific Influencer Marketing: Connecting with All Generations

Key Takeaways:

Understand how influencer marketing has evolved.

Discover which generations value influencer endorsements the most.

Learn practical tips to better reach different generations of shoppers with your influencer marketing strategy.

Ever browse a retail store and try on that hat or pair of gloves with a “one-size-fits-all” label, only to try it on and experience disappointment when it’s too tight or too loose? The same is true of influencer marketing. It’s not a one-size-fits-all strategy.

Depending on their age, consumers favor specific platforms and influencers, influencing how they perceive brands and products. Let’s discuss influencer marketing to uncover the nuances of how it’s evolved over the years from Baby Boomers to Alphas. We’ll also touch on how each different generation interacts with influencers and offer practical tips for tailoring your strategy to align with your target audience’s preferences and media habits. 

What Influencer Marketing Is

If you’re new to the phrase “influencer marketing,” it’s defined as a strategy where brands partner with popular social media users to promote their products. These influencers, who can be celebrities or everyday people with a large following, lend their credibility to brands, making the marketing seem more genuine. This approach helps brands reach a wider audience and potentially boost sales.

The Influencer Hierarchy

Not all influencers are the same. It’s important to note that there four main types based on the size of their following:


This type of influencer has more than 1 million followers. Think Kylie Jenner, Selena Gomez, and Cristiano Ronaldo. As you might have guessed, they’re the priciest influencers for marketers to collaborate with to promote their products. 


This type of influencer has between 100,000 to 1 million followers. Aimee Song, Desi Perkins, and Chriselle Lim fall into this category. Macro influencers are a bit more affordable to collaborate with for those with a high budget who want to tap into a larger audience but who don’t have the means to join hands with a mega influencer.


This type of influencer has a following between 1,000-100,000 people. One benefit of micro influencers is that they’re highly influential but have more specific audiences and are less pricy to partner with than mega or macro influencers. Katie Sturino, Brittany Xavier, and Jeanne Grey are just a few prominent ones.  


This type of influencer has less than 1,000 followers while still impacting a local or super niche community. Blake Gifford, Sophie Suchan, and Candace Hampton are just a few nanos that are on their A game. Connecting with nano influencers not only requires less financial investment, but you’ll reap the reward of amplifying your products’ reach to local shoppers.

How Influencer Marketing Has Evolved

Some date influencer marketing to ancient Roman times when consumers would gravitate toward products that gladiators used. But for the purpose of this blog, we’ll focus on modern influencer marketing.

Influencer marketing has changed a lot since its early days of blogger and celebrity endorsements in the early 2000s. Traditionally, large brands leveraged celebrities to reach wide audiences through high-profile ads. Recently, however, there’s been a distinct shift toward leveraging micro and nano influencers. For instance, instead of partnering with global movie stars, companies like Glossier have thrived by collaborating with lesser-known beauty influencers who share genuine product experiences to their dedicated followers. This strategy leverages the influencers’ credibility and the trust they’ve built within their communities, making the endorsements feel more personal and relatable.

The rise of platforms like Instagram and TikTok has contributed to the shift towards micro and nano influencers. These platforms allow everyday consumers to become key opinion leaders in very specific niches — from eco-friendly products and DIY home decor to specialized fitness regimes. A notable example is how Adidas uses micro influencers in the running community to reach dedicated athletes looking for authentic gear recommendations.

This transformation in influencer marketing underscores a broader trend: consumers increasingly value individual voices and authenticity over the polished, broad-scope approaches of traditional media. Today, influencer marketing not only focuses on alignment between a brand’s values and the influencer’s principles. It also ensures that the partnership resonates with the audience’s values and lifestyle, enhancing both engagement and trust.

The Key Role of Influencer Marketing for Younger Shoppers

Current research indicates that influencer marketing is particularly influential for retail brands that are targeting Gen Z and/or Millennial shoppers. Per Klarna, more than 40% of Gen Z and millennial shoppers follow and buy from accounts run by influencers compared to just 25% of Gen Xers and 9% of Boomers. And when it comes to brand discovery, influencers hold more clout with Gen Z and Millennials than they do with Gen X and Boomers. According to Forbes Advisor, 25% of Gen Z and 21% of Millennials discovered a brand from an Influencer, while only 9% of Gen Xers and 3% of Boomers did so.

Younger shoppers are also more likely to purchase a product recommended by influencers. Per Statista, 45% of Gen Zers and 45% of Millennials fell into this category, while only 33% of Gen Xers and 14% of Boomers made this claim. 

“45% of Gen Zers and Millennials are more likely to purchase a product that an influencer recommends compared to just 33% of Gen Xers and 14% of Boomers.”

– Statista

Influencer Marketing Tips for Each Generation

When planning influencer marketing for your retail business, consider the preferred platforms and campaign styles of your target generation. Here are key strategies to effectively leverage influencer partnerships across different generational audiences.


Boomers often interact with influencers on platforms like Facebook and YouTube, gravitating towards those who are industry experts or peers. Content that highlights trustworthiness and expertise resonates well with this demographic. Successful campaigns targeting Boomers emphasize these elements, using clear, expert-backed information to engage them.

Gen X

Generation X prefers engaging with influencers on Facebook and Instagram, appreciating content from relatable and practical influencers. Effective marketing strategies for Gen X include offering discounts and practical demonstrations that showcase the utility of a product. Case studies show that campaigns that combine relatability with utility tend to win over this cohort.


Millennials dominate platforms like Instagram and YouTube, following influencers who integrate lifestyle tips with activism. Influencers who embody authenticity and champion social responsibility connect deeply with Millennials. Messaging for this group should mirror these values, emphasizing transparency and ethical practices.

Gen Z

TikTok and Instagram are the go-to platforms for Gen Z, where influencers who prioritize creativity, entertainment, and authenticity thrive. To effectively engage Gen Z, marketing tactics should include interactive content and social media challenges. Campaigns that embrace these elements tend to perform well with this highly digital-savvy generation.

Gen Alpha

Though still very young, Generation Alpha is beginning to engage with influencer content, particularly through child-friendly platforms like YouTube, where family vlogs and animated characters are popular. According to Digital Voices Ltd., 49% of kids have the same level of trust in influencers as their own family and friends, while 55% of kids want to buy something their YouTube or Instagram star endorses. Gen Alpha will likely continue the trend of highly digital engagement, with their influencers likely evolving from the current landscapes their parents manage.

Support for Influencer Marketing and More

Need help refining your social media strategy or finding the right influencer to promote your products? Tap into TTG’s Strategy service!

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