Influencers Created a World Where Normal People With Large Followings Can Hold Sway

This is good news for brands who are looking for people to represent them

photo of bella hadid in a yellow dress
Bella Hadid has marketed herself on social media to help boost her career. Venturelli/Getty Images for Bulgari

Influence wasn’t always quantifiable. Sure, celebrities and models could sell magazines, and there’s no question that Oscar-winning actors, superhuman athletes, chart-topping musicians and globally known politicians can convince people how to think (or to buy certain products). But the idea of influence as a measurable metric is a newer phenomenon, one predicated by normal people with large social followings putting content on the internet.

This story first appeared in the Dec. 9, 2019, issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.
@dianapearl_ Diana is the brand marketing editor at Adweek and managing editor of Brandweek.