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Influencer Culture Takes Over The Creator Economy Insights From HigherVisibility's Report On Gen Z And The Rise Of Influencer Culture


Influencer Culture Takes Over The Creator Economy: Insights From HigherVisibility’s Report On Gen Z And The Rise Of Influencer Culture


The rise of social media influencers has been a significant trend in recent years, and a study by HigherVisibility has shed light on the impact of this phenomenon on Generation Z. 

The research was conducted by Censuswide with 1,000 general consumers (nat rep) aged 16-25 in the USA between 26.07.22 to 28.07.22. 

(Censuswide abides by and employs members of the Market Research Society, which are based on the ESOMAR principles.)

The study surveyed members of Gen Z across the United States to understand their views on social media influencing as a profession and its impact on their lifestyles and future prospects.

Key Takeaways

Enthusiasm for a Career as a Social Media Influencer

The desire to become a social media influencer is highly prevalent among Generation Z, with over 30% expressing this desire across all regions of the US.

The highest percentage was found in the West, where more than 2 in 5 Generation Z individuals admitted they would like to become an influencer at some point in their lives.

The study also found that 16% of those who would like to become an influencer even said they would pay to do so.

Of those surveyed, over 38% agreed that there is enough work to become a social media influencer, with 34% believing they know what it takes.

Nearly one in five Gen Z told researchers they would quit their job to become a social media influencer, with 15% believing it was the only career option for them.

Interestingly, male Gen Z (20%) are more likely than females (13%) to believe that becoming a social media influencer is the only career choice for them.

When asked about their plans for after school, over 27% of Generation Z in America said they want to become social media influencers, and some of them even suggest that there should be social media influencer training in school.

In addition, over 12% of Generation Z told researchers that they would drop out of college to become an influencer!

A meager 7.13% of Gen Z respondents said they would not become social media influencers.

Gap between Generations

HigherVisibility’s report claims that more than 20% of Generation Z believe the older generation does not understand the impact of social media, with 92% of respondents saying their parents do not support them in using social media.

Although 1 in 4 Gen Z claimed that their parents follow them on social media, 50% of them agree that their parents would prefer for them to go to college than become an influencer. 

How much Income Gen Z expects from Influencers?

When asked how much they expect influencers to earn, the most commonly cited amount was $75,000 to $100,000, followed by $50,000 to $75,000, with only 2% indicating “over $100,000”.

Surprisingly, 10% of respondents believed influencers only earn between $5,000 and $10,000 per year.

The study also asked Gen Z about the benefits of being a social media influencer. 

In first place was ‘free products,’ with 62% of respondents agreeing that this would be the best part about being an Influencer.

Next was ‘earnings’ with 60.59%, whilst ‘meeting other influencers’ came in third place.


When asked about their favorite social media influencers, Charli D’Amelio topped the list, beating both Kim Kardashian and Kylie Jenner as Gen Z’s favorite content creators. 

The TikTok sensation (Charlie) has amassed a huge 193,900,000 combined followers on TikTok and Instagram.

Finally, the study asked Gen Z which social media platform they would most like to be an influencer on. 

Preferred Platforms

Nearly 40% of Gen Z chose TikTok as their primary platform, with over half (51%) believing it is easier to be a social media influencer on TikTok than on any other social media platform. 

YouTube came in second place with 21.68%, while Instagram followed closely in third with 21.39%. 

What Does This Mean for Influencer Marketing?

The study concluded that the line between ‘influencer’ and ‘celebrity’ has blurred over the years, with influencer culture permeating the younger generations and becoming more prominent as time goes on. 

Influencer marketing has helped take brands to an entirely new level, increasing engagement among users online by creating content that resonates deeply with their followers. 

According to the study, over 1 in 4 (26%) Gen Z trust influencer reviews more than product page reviews. 

As popularity increases, so do instances of companies partnering with influencers; and the study found that the majority of Gen Z feel that there is a place for them within this ever-growing, though saturated, industry.


The study by HigherVisibility provides a comprehensive insight into the aspirations, perceptions, and attitudes of Gen Z towards social media influencing as a profession. 

It highlights the significant impact of influencer culture on this generation and underscores the importance of understanding these trends for brands and marketers aiming to engage with this demographic.

Click here for the detailed report.

To learn more about various research and studies like EnTribe’s survey results, read our analysis of these reports at

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David Adler is an entrepreneur and freelance blog post writer who enjoys writing about business, entrepreneurship, travel and the influencer marketing space.

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