Gen Z: Getting to Know the Next Generation of Mega Consumers

Top Three Ways to Tackle Marketing to Gen Z

Marketing efforts have been so focused on the “Millennial Mind” that time has slipped by us: Gen Z is here and ready to take over the consumer markets. These youngsters will account for 40% of all consumers by 2020, and they know how to handle their money. In fact, 60% have a savings account already. This sense of number crunching and frugalness is attributed to watching their parents’ net worth fall by 40% in their lifetime.

While their attention spans are shrinking by what seems like the minute, Gen Z truly has developed highly evolved filters to process all the information coming their way faster than any other generation before them. Imagine growing up with Wi-Fi everywhere you go and the ability to ask Siri or Google anything at any moment. It’s a digital world for them, and we need to adhere to their rules. But how do we do so?

Navigate Social Platforms Like They Do

Gen Zers can navigate social media with their eyes closed and know when brands can’t. Some Gen Zers check their social media almost 100 times per day, so from a marketing standpoint, we need to become fluent in social media.

The biggest mistake advertisers make is not changing their content per platform. Sure, it’s easy to copy and paste the same message onto the top social media sites but changing your brand’s advertisement is respectable and shows your digital knowledge. Understanding online filters will save your brand from getting lost in the sea of information hitting Gen Zers.

Here’s a quick guide as to how Gen Zers use their social:

  • Twitter stands as their main source of news, whether it’s international politics or when their favorite artist’s next album is dropping.
  • Snapchat captures the real moments in life. They want to document the winning game right as it’s happening, not wait to update their followers later.
  • Instagram shows their superior selves. It’s what they aspire to be in real life with a few touch ups here and there. Their feeds have themes, and the pressure is on to get that perfect food pic.
  • Facebook exists for general updates. Basically, it’s to let grandma know you’re alive without having to dial the phone.

Authenticity Is Rewarding

Gen Z wants to know brands care about the same things they do and that those stances go beyond a few marketing campaigns. The main rule of authenticity — if you market an opinion statement, make sure you have the corporate culture to back it up. Gen Zers have access to any review, fact, and article available and are willing to do their research on the companies they are buying from.

Authenticity also encompasses your brand’s communication with its audiences. According to a study done by IBM, 60% of Gen Zers said it is important that brands value their opinions, yet 47% said they either did not get a response or were not satisfied or neutral about the response they got from companies. Think of the possibilities if this audience felt a company was honest and agreed with the Zer’s overall opinion. It would strengthen their brand loyalty to an entirely new level.

FOMO Is Real

FOMO, fear of missing out, is a huge portion of the Gen Z culture. The group continues to be addicted to peer connection and the affirmation they get via social media, using platforms like Snapchat stories, Instagram stories and Twitter.

To combat the FOMO, social media fills the void for those who can’t attend events and rush to their feeds to feel the hype. The right combination of using influencers and social media can sky rocket your brand in minutes. Take Kylie Jenner’s Lip Kit San Francisco pop-up event for example. Beauty junkies swarmed the city’s streets, but it wasn’t the just the makeup driving the crowds. Jenner could have been selling calculators and people would have bought it. The true draw was the fear of missing an experience they could document and share on their social channels (or in this case, missing a chance to meet the Insta-famous Kylie Jenner). FOMO-driven advertising techniques such as this have proven time and time again to help brands grow in popularity and understanding the Gen Z consumer ideology.

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