Generation Z and Digital Influencers in the Tourism Industry

Danielle Barbe, L Neuburger

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Social media has become a vital tool for word-of-mouth (WOM) communication due to the importance consumers place on social ties and trust in the source of information. A growing trend in online marketing is the use of digital influencers. With influencer marketing, products/services are marketed through an individual viewed as being influential. Influencer marketing differs from celebrity endorsement in that the individual is often not a celebrity, but a ‘micro-celebrity’; those who gained popularity through strategic cultivation of an online audience, specifically through social media. These digital influencers sway their audiences’ opinions and are viewed as more relatable, and therefore a powerful mechanism for e-WOM. Instagram and YouTube are popular platforms for digital influencers due to their extensive reach and focus on visual content. As tourism is uniquely visual, influencers frequently use these platforms for sharing videos, images, and opinions about destinations. Since 45% of Generation Z are ‘almost constantly’ online (Anderson and Jiang in Pew Research Center 31:1673–1689, 2018), and visual platforms, such as YouTube and Instagram, are most popular among this group, digital influencers have a strong presence in their lives. This book chapter will discuss the ongoing trend of tourism and hospitality marketing to Generation Z through digital influencers and important implications for the industry.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGeneration Z Marketing and Management in Tourism and Hospitality
Subtitle of host publicationThe Future of the Industry
EditorsNikolaos Stylos, Roya Rahimi, Bendegul Okumus, Sarah Williams
Place of PublicationCham, Switzerland
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9783030706951
ISBN (Print)9783030706944, 9783030706975
Publication statusPublished - 25 May 2021

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