Millennials are more connected than ever. Constituting 27% of the US population, this part of the world’s age group will be without doubt a major spending power for the years to come, since they could keep growing to 88.5 million people by 2020, owing to immigration, according to MetLife Mature Market InstituteBeing. This generation is well connected and acquiring key positions in all domains which is why they have gained power of influence in many areas including fashion and design.
Millennials’ influence mainly acquired from their connectivity on social media has also led many fashion brands to endorse them as brand ambassadors or having them spotted wearing and using their products.
We set on a quest to try and spot the most influential millennials. The criteria used to select is based upon their collaborations with fashion brands, their involvement in the industry as well as the degree of responsiveness from the public:
-Lena Dunham: The “Girls” girl is without doubt one of the biggest influencer in popular culture and most recently in fashion especially after her appearance on the cover of Vogue. This carefully planned move was taken by Vogue’s editor in chief, Anna Wintour, aiming for attracting the peculiar millennial followers of Dunham to the magazine.
-Amber Le Bon: British model and daughter of Simon Le Bon, Amber is a millennial which is very present on social media and which has landed several collaborations with fashion brands such as Forever 21 and Michael Kors. Kors, in his turn, has confirmed that Le Bon is a perfect gateway to tap into the millennial market through her lifestyle and influence.
-Jennifer Lawrence: The 22 year old actress was named the official face of Miss Dior and was dressed by the fashion house on all official red carpet appearances.
-Miley Cyrus: This millennial’s behaviour has ranked her as one of the top fashion influencers with her style based on reviving the 90s fashion. She has been lately chosen as the muse of American designer Marc Jacobs .
-Rihanna: The world-renowned performer has always been a fashion icon and has witnessed numerous collaborations with international fashion houses. Most recently joining Karl Lagerfeld and Cara Delevingne in the Chanel 's supermarket catwalk during last Paris fashion week.
-Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen: From child stars to fashion icons the Olsen twins are fashion influencers through their high-end brand “The Row” as well as their popularisation of the “homeless look” which was acknowledged by the New York Times and which named Mary Kate Olsen as a fashion icon and influencer.
-Kim Kardashian and Kanye West: The fashion power couple are definitely influencers with their carefully coordinated outfits and their latest Vogue cover, which created a huge media buzz.
-Cara Delevingne: Picked as model of the year by British Vogue, Delevingne has been influential from the start especially through her extensive social media presence and interaction with her fans. She was also named as the top googled fashion figure of 2013.
-Beyoncé: There is no doubt that Beyoncé will always be in the top fashion influencers list considering her constant presence and collaborations in this field. Only her latest album featured 18 unique fashion styles, which confirmed her status as a fashion icon.
-Humberto Leon: Founder of Opening Ceremony, Leon is one of the main influencers of fashion cool. His presence on social media outlets accounted for a strong follower base mainly because of his trendsetting posts and his eye for multi-disciplinary designs.
All the celebrities mentioned above are daily on news, covers and campaigns, but how truly influential they are in social media? To figure it out, there was the opportunity to track their names as a trending topics in our (DMD) Digital Marketing Database on Twitter. What is very useful here is the fact that DMD tracks the hashtag as many times as it is mentioned next to fashion or luxury brands, which allows us to see if people relate this influencers often to brands in the industry. Within the period of six months, this is the rank these celebrities gained according to the mentions:
1.-#Jennifer Lawrence: 2783 mentions
2.-#Beyoncé: 2399 mentions
3.- #Rihanna: 2086 mentions
4.- #CaraDelevingne : 910 mentions
5.- #MileyCyrus : 414 mentions
6.- #kimye : 351 mentions
7.- #lenadunham : 71 mentions
8.- #MaryKate&AshleyOlsen: 47mentions
9.- #HumbertoLeon on Twitter: 15 mentions
10.-#amberlebon on Twitter: 0 mentions
What this ranks shows is that even though celebrities are chosen by fashion brands for collaborations, or fashion magazines to be featured in the cover, only through social media we can measure how much impact they have on customers minds when relating their names to brands in the industry. For instance this rank demonstrates that Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence, together with two of the most famous singers of this generation, Beyonce and Rhianna are more frequently mentioned by Twitter users next to a fashion brand.
Millennials are the focus of many fashion brands because it is the main age group to encompass influencers as well as spending power. Understanding their behaviour and interests as well as their societal habits will be a must for fashion brands in the future. Influencers on the other hand are also as varied and diverse as their public, by that fashion is more and more varied and fits the style of a wider audience.