They’re called Generation Z and they are becoming a major force in the economy today. Find out how to build branding and marketing messages that connect with Gen Z.
Gen Z are those born in the mid 1990’s and today becoming a major force in the economy.
Millennial’s are still the largest buyers with over $200 billion worth of buying power today, but Gen Z is catching up. This crowd now holds a buying power of about $44 billion in the current market. That should get your attention.
Personally, I love coaching Gen Z students and working with new Gen Z team members. I find that in general they are eager and excited to make a mark in the world all wrapped up in energy. Yes, many of them have a decided lack of focus. And I understand that – not only because I have that same trait as a goal-oriented entrepreneur, but because it’s also about our lifestyle.
Gen Z is that generation that has never heard a landline phone ring, never lived in a world without the internet and basically started playing with computers as early as 4 years old.
Most Gen Z’s have never mailed a “snail mail” letter or even seen a record player. Gen Z lives the reality of fast-paced internet videos, summary reads and instant communication with anyone, anywhere. So many people have noticed that Gen Z’s tend to have a short attention span, but that doesn’t mean that they can’t contribute, not by a long shot. It means that they contribute in a different way.
Here’s what I’ve found very interesting with Gen Z. Most don’t buy into into the ‘get good marks at school so you get into a good college or university so you can get a great job’.
Gen Z is the first generation to largely turn their backs on the idea of having a job for life. In fact, many of them don’t want a job at all, or if they do, it is just a way to generate money to finance their entrepreneurial dreams.
For many of the previous generations, we were raised believing the only way to success is to trade your time for money, and we’re all coming to realize that’s far from the truth
Gen Z is the first generation marked by an entrepreneurial view of money and careers.
Christie Garton, founder of UChic identifies 5 ways to connect with the up-and-coming Gen Z:
“To secure the favor of the up-and-coming generation of consumers, you have to know what makes them tick. Keep reading to learn Gen Z’s motivators and how you can shape your business to match their values.
Help them build their brand.
After witnessing millennials struggling to find a job after college, Gen Z recognizes the importance of getting valuable work experience early. Not satisfied with simply working at the local grocery store, they’re volunteering, starting online shops and partnering with companies as ambassadors. They’re constantly on the lookout for ways to build up their personal brands. This is where your organizations comes in.
Invite Gen Z to be a part of your brand as they build their own. Social media ambassadorships, influencer campaigns and virtual focus groups not only make Gen Z feel invested in your company and secure their loyalty early on, but also helps them boost their own online presence.
Rock the selfie.
Scan a Gen Z’s Instagram page and you’ll surely find more than a few selfies. Mirror their willingness to put themselves out there and showcase the personality of your brand in order to grab their attention. Gen Z doesn’t want to speak to a faceless company, they want to connect with an authentic person. Reveal behind-the-scenes looks, ditch the overly “planned” feeling for more spontaneous, honest posts.
An extra tip: pick a relatable spokesperson.
Consider enlisting a YouTube star or Vine personality rather than a traditional celebrity. Though they may not be “mainstream famous,” Gen Z values their opinions and authenticity.
Focus on quality first.
Contrary to millennials who prefer to invest in experiences rather than things, Gen Z would rather have a cool product — but there’s a catch. With a world of information at their fingertips and the digital knowledge that comes with growing up with the Internet, Gen Z is selective with their purchases. They conduct extensive research before pressing “order.” If your product doesn’t pass the quality test, no marketing campaign will make a difference.
Impact still matters.
The need to make a difference in the world remains a constant across millennials and Gen Z, though Gen Z approaches it more pragmatically. They not only want to have an impact, they want to see the impact. It’s not enough to simply say your company cares about the causes Gen Z believes in, you have to show it. Work social good into your business strategy, enlist the help of Gen Z and then provide updates, videos and emotional stories that truly convey the power of your philanthropy.
Gen Z may be young, but they’re informed, ambitious and primed to be the next big consumer market – and it’s time to pay attention.”