A study conducted earlier this year by Oracle and CRM Essentials illustrated how social media influencers have become a trusted source for consumers seeking to purchase or discover opinions about a product. Only 13% of respondents said they have discovered new products or brands via traditional TV advertising, while 80% reported purchasing products in direct response to social media content.
Gen Z and Millennial participants were twice as likely as Baby Boomers to rely on influencers, but 37% of consumers overall reported trusting social media influencers over brands. Gen Z was the most likely to discover new products through influencers, with 84% of them saying they have purchased products in direct response to social media content. Less than half of Baby Boomer respondents (46%) reported the same.
YouTube remains the most popular channel for following influencers across generations, but Gen Z favors TikTok (25%) while Boomers prefer Facebook (23%).
Post-purchasing interactions are also happening in online communities. Rather than engage with traditional customer service channels, 93% of consumers reported turning to a brand’s social media platform to find an answer to their question.