In the world of social media marketing, there’s a new player in town: the granfluencer. These are seniors who have built up a significant following on platforms like Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube, and they’re quickly becoming a force to be reckoned with.
While traditional influencers tend to be younger, with a focus on fashion, beauty, and lifestyle content, granfluencers are a bit different. They’re often retirees, grandmas who are breaking the mold and who are sharing their wisdom, experiences, and passions with the world. And while they may not have the same level of engagement as their younger counterparts, they do have something that’s just as valuable: trust.
In fact, according to a recent survey, 70% of Baby Boomers say they trust the recommendations of influencers over traditional advertising. So, it’s no wonder that more and more brands are turning to granfluencers to help them connect with this valuable demographic.
Who are Granfluencers?
Granfluencers are seniors who have amassed a significant following on social media, empowering and inspiring grown-ups to break from societal norms, challenge ageism and old stereotypes.
Many of them are over 70 and often focus on topics that are relevant to their age group, sharing their expertise and experiences to help their followers navigate different aspects of life. From cooking and gardening to travel and finance, granfluencers offer a wealth of knowledge and insights that are valuable to their fans, who are drawn to their personal style, outrageous sense of humour, or their success in a specific niche.
Well known for their authenticity and reliability, they don’t try to be something they’re not and are comfortable in their own skin. This makes them appealing to their followers, who appreciate their genuine approach. Thanks to their ability to create a sense of community, engaging with their followers, responding to comments and messages, they are also able to create a strong sense of belonging. This is especially important for seniors who may feel isolated or disconnected from their social circles.
The Rise of Granfluencers in Social Media Marketing
Marketers who struggle to imagine older generations with smartphones will be surprised to learn that 82% of online Baby Boomers have social media accounts. That’s 4.6 million people between the ages of 57 and 75 who spend time on Facebook, Instagram, and—as we discovered recently—TikTok.
The rise of granfluencers in social media marketing can be attributed to the changing demographics of social media users. According to a report by Pew Research Center, social media usage among adults aged 65 and above has more than tripled since 2010. This demographic is also the fastest-growing group of social media users. As more seniors embrace social media, brands are starting to recognize the value of granfluencers in reaching this demographic.
Another reason for the rise of granfluencers in social media marketing is the COVID-19 pandemic. With seniors being one of the most vulnerable groups to the virus, many have been forced to stay at home and limit their social interactions. Social media has become a lifeline for many seniors, allowing them to stay connected with the world and engage with their interests. As a result, granfluencers have seen a surge in followers and engagement during the pandemic.
Granfluencer Case Studies and Success Stories
There are many examples of successful granfluencer campaigns in social media marketing. Brands such as H&M, Urban Decay, and Nutella have recognized the power of elderly influencers in connecting with their target demographics and promoting their products in an engaging and meaningful way.
Brands are embracing these inspiring individuals to reach a broader audience and champion diversity. Actually, senior influencers strike a chord with people of every age with their unmatched perspective and genuine authenticity.
One notable example is the partnership between Airbnb and granfluencer Paula Sutton. A British grandmother, she shared her experience staying in an Airbnb property in the Scottish Highlands with her followers. The campaign generated over 18,000 likes and 500 comments on Instagram and helped Airbnb connect with an older demographic of travellers.
Another example is the collaboration between makeup brand Glossier and granfluencer Linda Rodin. A former model and fashion editor, Rodin shared her love for Glossier’s makeup products with her followers on Instagram. The campaign generated over 7,000 likes and 200 comments, and helped Glossier reach a new audience of older women.
Specializing in food and lifestyle content, Barbara “Babs” Costello has partnered with notable brands like Pillsbury, Roth Cheese, United Healthcare, and Talbots, with 31% of her content dedicated to branded promotions. With an estimated reach of 466.69k and estimated impressions of 700.03k, she has established a significant online presence on TikTok and Instagram and captivating a large audience.
As social media continues to evolve, it’s likely that granfluencers will become an even more important part of social media marketing igniting inspiration within us all. Will you be the next one?