Social media’s surge in popularity means influencers are more and more integral to consumers’ everyday media consumption. It is increasingly normal for individuals to fall victim to the “influencer-effect,” buying a product simply because another person deemed it worth your money.
Brands are capitalizing on people’s appointed status as an influencer, using them to blast consumers’ pages with subliminal promotions about their products and overall brand visibility. This latest phenomenon in social media marketing has led to countless brand deals through YouTube videos, TikToks, and Instagram/Facebook reels.
As a result, people are constantly bombarded with products and fads they never seem to keep up with, thereby leading to increased rates of consumerism.
Consumerism is the non-stop desire to buy and own physical goods. Influencers promote consumerism when they advocate for products they don’t think anyone should live without. It’s also the feel-good factor people get after buying the same product an influencer uses.
The way I see it, influencers’ effect on societal buying habits leads to constant, mass dissatisfaction. Many influencers flaunt their day-to-day life and post highlight reels that can make others feel inadequate, questioning why their life doesn’t mirror that of others.
Moreover, as influencers grow their following, they may have the opportunity to live more luxurious lifestyles. Just as influencers become more material, so will consumers, which then breeds unhealthy consumerism. Even if this isn’t the influencer’s intention, they’re showing off a lifestyle that many cannot attain. Consumers will attribute an influencer’s happy demeanor to their materials or home situation. It’s this promotion of an unwavering, happy mentality that ultimately convinces consumers that material goods are most important.
We’ve all fallen victim to the influencer buying scheme. I either like the way the product looks, how it works, or the influencer is just so convincing that I feel the need to buy. Nonetheless, it’s important we don’t caught up in consumerism. Just because influencers’ lifestyles appear glamorous, there is more than meets the idea. Keep in mind self-worth is not defined by products or what you own; rather, it’s defined by the person you are.