Gen Z is here to stay: Here’s how Brands should be marketing to them
It’s the 21st century and understanding your target audience and marketing specific to their interests is very important. Consumer behaviour is constantly evolving due to the emergence of new trends and marketers have to be adaptable. Many marketers are clueless when it comes to marketing to newer generations, particularly Generation Z audiences. With Generation Z making up 40 percent of the population by 2020, now’s the time to make the relevant marketing changes. Don’t be alarmed, we’ve got all the scoop on Generation Z to successfully reach out to them. Buckle up!
(Consumer behaviour is always changing and marketers have to be prepared to adapt accordingly.)
Who are the Gen Z’s?
According to Pew Research, Generation Z is anyone born after 1997. Popularly referred to as the ‘Tic Tok’ generation, members of Generation Z are digital natives.
Gen Z’s consumption habits generally vary from others. This group has immersed in the world of technology since birth. Smartphones are preferred to conventional media such as television. Due to the vast amount of content that they have already seen, they are more receptive towards edgy, visually distinct creative campaigns. This is possibly why certain social media platforms such as Instagram, Snapchat, Youtube and Tic Tok are preferred over others. According to the market research firm, wildness, it has also been identified that generation Z wants to be a part of the content creation process as well instead of just consuming it. Hence, a continuous two-way open dialogue between brands and generation z consumers is crucial to keeping them engaged.
(Generation Z is becoming more influential than you think.)
Gen Z is often referred to as just teenagers and many marketers are quick to overlook them. However, by 2020, Gen Z’s will form 40% of all consumers and account for over $4 billion worth of spending. Moreover, Gen Z is particularly known for its presence as an economic and cultural force. Many notable fashion trends, memes and even political movements have started due to Generation Z. Hence, it’s of utmost importance to rally the support of this influential generation for maximum brand exposure.
We’ve put together a list of marketing changes that have been observed among brands when reaching out to Generation Z. If you haven’t already incorporated these hacks, make sure you do so before it’s too late!
Content is key
- Shorter Content Segments
“Snackable” content is key. Generation Z grew up on platforms such as Twitter, which is known for bite-sized information. With a decreasing attention span and an increasing amount of content out there, marketers need to focus on creating shorter and attention-grabbing content segments.
- Campaigns need to be edgier
Traditional marketing doesn’t work for Generation Z. Marketers have to be more creative with their approach by embracing technology. Visual storytelling is popular among this bunch. For instance, try jumping on the meme culture bandwagon and you’ll be surprised how much closer that could bring you to a viral campaign!
(Ditch your usual traditional marketing campaigns.)
Mobile optimization comes first!
- A survey by IBM revealed that about 75% of Generation Z associated mobile phones as the device they used most. Also, many of them use their smartphones to shop online due to convenience and accessibility. With that, brands need to ensure that they have a fully optimized mobile experience to stay relevant within the community. This includes easy navigation on mobile sites, short loading time and the use of mobile apps.
(Gen Z grew up with smartphones so its crucial to optimize your mobile settings.)
Value your Corporate Social Responsibility
- It’s no surprise that Generation Z is socially conscious. The political and economic factors that Generation Z has grown with has somehow contributed to its realist approach with brands. Due to their mobilization with technology, generation Z are very connected with the rest of the world via various diverse online communities, which exposes them to real-life issues across the globe. Brands will have to value their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) to gain the vote of this generation. This includes philanthropic efforts, environmental conservation, company diversity, labour practices and volunteer efforts. A staggering 94% of Gen Z expect brands to address social and environmental issues and 70% of them try to purchase products from brands considered ethical. Hence, brands should identify a social cause that they are passionate about to connect better with Generation Z and make a global impact. This doesn’t just include talking about it, but also conceptualising yearly efforts to highlight their dedication to the cause.
(Corporate social responsibility is crucial to ensure global success.)
Build authentic connections
Gen Z audiences tend to search every review and experience online so authenticity should be a core focus when marketing to this group. Gen Z appreciates personalisation and wants to be treated as an individual rather than a ‘target audience’. 63% of Generation Z prefer marketing from ‘real’ people compared to celebrity endorsements as this makes them feel like they can relate better with the product/service. Here’s how this can be achieved:
- Incorporate more user-generated content which allows consumers to feel like they are part of the content creation process.
- Keep communication casual and constant and create a community for consumers to be invested in your brand.
- Work with local influencers that share similar goals and values as your brand. This shows that your brand is being vouched by a trusted source.
(Be authentic to connect with Gen Z audiences.)
The key takeaway of marketing to Generation Z is to prioritise customer satisfaction just as much as brand success. While Generation Z is often perceived as just ‘kids’, they are highly capable of influencing other generations, particularly their parents and bringing in major revenue. With every new generation of consumers, marketers have to be open to adapting their marketing practices accordingly to not lose out on support. Gen z audience are determined to build lifelong relationships and loyalty with brands. Don’t miss the opportunity to connect with this socially active bunch!