Merchandising/Marketing/Retailing: Branding

An Influencer Like Me: Does Influencer Social Status Matter?

  • Do Yuon Kim (University of Minnesota)
  • Hye-Young Kim (University of Minnesota)


Social media influencers deliver marketing messages, however, they do not necessarily have to be well-known celebrities or famous people. Instead, ordinary people have risen up the ranks of social media to amass hundreds, thousands, or even millions of followers due to their approachable images as well as their expertise on a given subject (Sirohi, 2019; Williams& Valencia, 2019). Even though these relatable influencers tend to be more persuasive and trusted than traditional celebrities (Wischhover, 2018), it is still unclear how ordinary people appeal to social media users compared to those with powerful social identity. This study examines the effect of influencer social status (high/ dissimilar vs. ordinary/ similar) on desirable marketing outcomes (i.e., product attitude, willingness to purchase, and loyalty to the influencer). In so doing, this study investigates whether a follower’s social comparison orientation intervenes in these relationships

Keywords: Social media marketing, Influencer

How to Cite:

Kim, D. & Kim, H., (2019) “An Influencer Like Me: Does Influencer Social Status Matter?”, International Textile and Apparel Association Annual Conference Proceedings 76(1). doi:

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Published on
15 Dec 2019