Comprising nearly 30% of our population, Generation Z are the first natives of technology, having been exposed to it since birth and knowing a life surrounded by the internet of things. This audience are savvy, they grew up in a recession meaning they are cautious with what they spend and have lived through scandals surrounding privacy so have become conscious of their data.
Gen Z are the first generation to pass the tipping point and be spending longer online on their mobiles than all other devices combined. It is due to this audience that mobile first design and development is a necessity that won’t be letting up anytime soon. Brand marketing must span 5 screens to be best positioned for this audience – phone, computer, tv, tablet and wearable all must be covered to accommodate their multi-tasking nature of device usage.
Authenticity is arguably one of the key things that must be present when marketing to this audience. They have been present users of Snapchat and Instagram Stories since their respective launches and appreciate how these platforms bring you closer to people and brands, allowing insight into personalities and behind the scenes access. This exposure has led to brand engagement requiring better connections and interactivity through live streaming and video, as opposed to relying solely on instant messaging and chat bot functions.
A particularly important note from this generation is their expectation for ease and speed online. They are naturally impatient having never needed to wait like the generations before them. Websites must be instant and easy to navigate; marketing messages must be clear and honest and movement between channels must be seamless. They haven’t ever known a struggle for information retrieval and therefore expect to be able to access what they need instantaneously.
Experiences are valued by this audience, they want to do things as opposed to just owning things. To target this audience, brands should look to create experiences and offer opportunities showcase and inspire. The ability to spend time with a brand through this kind of outlet will build a connection between the individual and brand. Luckily for the brands, experiences encourage the digital minded Generation Z to share their brand encounter across their social platforms.
Generation Z are challenging marketers, but through overcoming the hurdles, the industry has been inspired to create innovate solution and consequently is making positive changes to ensure their audience is captured.