Consumer Behavior

Exploring the Parasocial Impact of Nano, Micro and Macro Influencers

  • Maureen Lehto Brewster (University of Georgia)
  • Jewon Lyu orcid logo (University of Georgia)


Social media influencers (SMIs) are figures who have cultivated an online following by commercializing their social media content, establishing credibility, and building parasocial relationships (PSR) with their followers. SMIs can be categorized by their follower count: mega (<1m), macro (100k-1m), micro (5k-100k), and nano (>5k). The purpose of this study is to investigate (1) how PSR and influencer credibility vary across nano, micro, and macro SMIs, (2) how credibility in different levels affects the development of PSR, and (3) how PSR affects brand attitude. The findings of this study show that credibility is linked to PSR development among SMIs but is not significantly different across SMI levels. PSR is also found to be significantly higher among nano-influencers than the micro and macro levels, and positively influences brand attitude. The study extends existing research on follower count and offers new theoretical and practical insights into nano-influencer marketing.

Keywords: parasocial relationship (PSR), Instagram, credibility, parasocial relationship, social media influencers, social media influencers (SMIs)

How to Cite:

Lehto Brewster, M. & Lyu, J., (2020) “Exploring the Parasocial Impact of Nano, Micro and Macro Influencers”, International Textile and Apparel Association Annual Conference Proceedings 77(1). doi:

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Published on
28 Dec 2020
Peer Reviewed