Although influencer marketing is dominated by Millennials and Gen Z, it’s becoming increasingly important for brands to include talent from older generations.
Meghan Peterson is the Senior Talent Manager at Gleam Futures, an agency that represents influencers, connects them with brands, and helps develop influencer marketing campaigns. One of the notable influencers on their roster is Nadine, a beauty and wellness influencer who is in her fifties. In this article, we discuss why it’s so important that the older generations are represented in an industry that is dominated by Millennials and Gen Z.
The internet is dominated by younger generations, but more people from older generations are signing up on social media every day. If brands forget to include the older generations in their influencer campaigns, they risk missing some great opportunities.
Take Nadine, for example. She is a woman in her fifties who is represented by Gleam Futures, an influencer marketing agency and management company for social media and entertainment stars in the U.K. and U.S. In November of 2020, she teamed up with Superdrug, a pharmacy retailer, to create a curated skincare kit that would be sold in Superdrug stores and online.
Nadine’s talent, knowledge, and opportunity combined to make an incredibly successful campaign that achieved an 89% sell-through rate in just a few weeks.
Great Opportunities from Great Representation
Meghan Peterson is the Senior Talent Manager at Gleam Futures and she represents Nadine. Her career began in public relations with Walt Disney and then she transferred to a social media agency. As soon as she saw that a position at Gleam Futures opened up, she jumped at the opportunity.
“I’d always wanted to work there. I loved digital creators,” Peterson said. “I thought that talent management was a really interesting field and I’d already departed from public relations, so I knew that I didn’t really want to do that anymore.”
Peterson was hired as a Talent Coordinator, an entry-level position at the time, five years ago and has grown through the business since. Today, she manages a roster of seven as the Senior Talent Manager and works alongside other talent managers, overseeing their rosters and making sure they are hitting their targets
The agency’s roster includes influencers of all ages, which is largely uncommon in the digital marketing world – but perhaps not for long.
“Overwhelmingly, the people who are online are young people. That’s just a fact,” Peterson said. “But, what I think is really interesting is that ‘young people’ was a pretty static age group on social [media], whereas today the ‘over-fifties’ are growing so quickly on all platforms. There’s such an opportunity there because you’ve got all of these people who are ready to have content that’s relevant [to them] but it’s not really there.”
Influencer marketing isn’t the only marketing sphere that seems to be behind the times. Big brands that run international campaigns aren’t exactly recognizing the older demographic.
“Whenever brands do big, flashy campaigns there’s never really a person over fifty in that content,” Peterson said. “They’re ticking all the boxes, making sure they’re hitting all of the areas they need to hit, but age is so regularly not included in that.
“Nadine always says, ‘Every single person in the world, doesn’t matter who you are, if you’re lucky, you will one day be an old person.’ And that is universal. Everyone is going to be old one day. So why wouldn’t you talk to people who have the most money – which is, typically, people who are over fifty – and are a huge demographic, especially in the U.K.?”
Nadine’s Super-Successful Superdrug Campaign
Superdrug is a popular health and beauty retailer in the U.K. that Gleam Futures works with closely. A couple of years ago, they wanted to launch skin care as a vertical that took inspiration from brands that offer high-quality skin care products at accessible prices.
One of the things that Nadine frequently talks about on her social media platform is how high-quality skincare products that produce great results don’t have to be expensive.
“There was a logical link between Nadine and Superdrug,” Peterson said. “We were chatting with Superdrug for a really long time and we eventually locked in on a campaign, which is one of the few larger-scale campaigns that we’ve done with Nadine. It included in-store point-of-sale, lots of web usage and other marketing partners.”
Together, Nadine and Superdrug created a beauty box with seven items.
“It pulled all of the best bits of Nadine and all the best bits of Superdrug,” Peterson said. “It was a great product that was affordable and it sold out quickly. It was one of those campaign moments where I thought, ‘Wow, she’s so powerful and she’s so great at delivering key messages of a brand in an audience-friendly way.’”
For Superdrug, one of the most impressive outcomes of the campaign was how many people had gone onto the Superdrug website and searched for the Nadine box.
“It was far more than the amount of boxes we actually had,” Peterson said.
Within 24-hours, Superdrug sold out of the boxes they had reserved for online sales and was required to reallocate stock from their brick-and-mortar stores. Only 1,000 boxes remained unsold in stores when the government initiated a lockdown in an effort to contain the coronavirus that was rapidly spreading throughout the world.
Looking to the Future with Past Generations
The influencer market needs more people who have genuine talent and marketable skills- which is exactly what Nadine and other members of her generation can bring.
As more members of older generations join social media, it is going to be crucial for brands to take advantage of their presence. Influencers who are fifty-plus years old are likely to have more experience and connections in their field than the majority of online influencers today. Brands may find that they are as pleasantly surprised by older influencers as Superdrug was with their collaboration with Nadine.