Generation Z: Are you ready?

On March 11, 2018

Post-Millennials, Screenagers or Digital Natives. Whatever you choose to call them, Generation Z are no longer the children you have in mind. The oldest members of Generation Z are actually starting to enter their twenties.

Those born 1995-2009 make up over 2 billion of the global population, and by 2025 will represent a third of the workforce, according to McCrindle. What's more, they influence a massive amount of spending. Generation Z directly spends up to $143 billion every year, but also has the potential to indirectly influence as much as $333 billion of household spending, says Barkley.

So, with the up and coming generation set to represent an enormous and wealthy market, how should marketers be targeting them? To start, you need to understand the core values of Generation Z.

Generation Z are emerging as consumers with a focus on visual and digital communication and real, responsible action.
Generation Z are emerging as consumers with a focus on visual and digital communication and real, responsible action.

What attitudes define Generation Z?

The youngest generation further the need for conscious, intelligent marketing with the following traits:

  • Digital and connected – Having grown up in a largely digital world, Generation Z are not only comfortable with technology but, in some cases, depend upon it. Many of Generation Z rely on their phones as a time-telling device, as well as for directions, weather information and taking photos, says McCrindle. Being constantly connected to the rest of the world via their phones, Generation Z are creating an open-book world, where any question they have can be quickly answered and communication is quick, brief and primarily visual.
  • Socially responsible – With so much information at their fingertips, young people are becoming increasingly aware of global social, environmental and economic issues. Climate change, large-scale conflicts and social inequality were cited as the most serious issues facing the world by young respondents to the 2017 Shapers Survey.
  • Interactive multi-taskers – Young people are not just consuming content online, but are creating it to express themselves. In order to rebel, voice their feelings and make a change in the world, Generation Z are turning to online platforms and inviting the rest of the interenet's users to engage. As the world's best multi-taskers, Generation Z produce images, text, video and audio to allow for multi-screen interaction.

What does this mean for marketers?

A genuine digital presence will become more crucial than ever, as will product transparency.

Companies hoping to stay relevant through the rise of Generation Z need to adapt their marketing strategies to align with younger peoples' values. 

A genuine digital presence will become more crucial than ever, as will product transparency. The majority of younger shoppers will research products online before making any in-person purchase, according to AMP, so you need to be sure that all information about your product is digitally accessible. Open new marketing and sales channels online to address young people on their chosen platforms – Snapchat has the highest proportion of Generation Z users, according to Business Insider. Most importantly, stay aware of where this highly adaptable generation is – new technologies are easily adopted and one platform can become irrelevant just as quickly.

Meanwhile, remember to appeal to this generation's humanity. With a strong social conscience, 62 per cent of future shoppers prefer brands that stand for something and a similar proportion will pay more for sustainable products, says AMP. Develop positively influential business goals and demonstrate your activism in your marketing.

A complete marketing strategy should never overlook the importance and impact of integrated direct marketing. The Prospect Shop can provide you with a comprehensive mailing list to help you best reach the younger audience. Contact us today to find out more.

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