Want to Reach Gen Z Customers? Here’s Your Marketing Strategy
The era of Millennials dominating has passed and Generation Z has taken over. With a complete digital transformation happening in the world today, there’s a lot to keep up with. Case in point, the fact that Generation Z is quickly gaining tremendous influence around the world, determining what exactly is trendy, popular, and in essence, successful in the world.
Gen Z, Millennials, and Marketing
Many people often make the mistake of confusing those belonging to Generation Z with those who are classified as Millennials. To clear things up (thank you, Pew Research), Millennials are people born between 1981 and 1996, and anyone born from 1997 onwards is now known as Generation Z.
What’s cool about Generation Z is that they’re the first generation to have access to such powerful technologies starting at such a young age. Being exposed to a mass amount of technology in their formative years has resulted in this generation forming a special bond and, as some might say, obsession with digital media and technology. Let’s not forget that it was during Gen Z’s time that the term “influencer” evolved into a full-time job. Gen Zers have spent less time flipping through channels on a television and more scrolling through new YouTube videos. After all, how else do you think the modern-day influencer was created?
This vast change eaves previous generations with a lot of questions about how and why the Gen Zers are so different from any other generation. Why are they always glued to their phones? What is the difference between learning with technology vs. traditional education? How is this generation changing the world? Well, let’s find out.
Gen Z Marketing Insights
Looking at the top marketing trends for 2019, some Generation Z characteristics include making use of live video and chatbots, as well as an increased usage of smart devices like the iPhone and Echo series to search the internet. It’s pretty clear that this generation brought a lot of change, and with that, a lot of opportunities for business owners and marketers. Marketing strategies are tailored to the person making the purchasing decisions, and in this case, it is Gen Zers who are leading the charge.
Whether it’s in the form of begging their parents for the latest and greatest video game system, influencing friends to go to certain events, or raving about their new favorite restaurants on social media, Gen Zers know what’s cool and will not stop until everyone else knows it. When you take this into consideration, as well as the fact that many Gen Zers are glued to their phones, you arrive at a couple of ways to get their attention.
Effective Content Marketing Strategies to Attract Generation Z Customers
Gen Zers are smart- it takes more than flashing an ad on their screen to get their attention and take action. Here are some hot, new content marketing strategies to attract the generation Z customers:
Use Influencer Marketing
Gen Zers’ love for social media platforms has created a whole new type of celebrity: the influencer. These “celebrities” are different from past ones because their followers will do just about anything and everything to be like them, something you can use to your advantage. In fact, collaborating with these influencers can be a great way to attract a large audience to your brand. How? Through influencer marketing.
A company that did a phenomenal job at Gen Z influencer marketing is Sephora. Sephora has a special group of influencers known as ‘Troop SC’ who promotes their products and brand through exclusive events, meetups, and trips that they post about on their social media accounts. Sephora hosts the exclusive meetups to meet these influencers and requires each attendee to make a $30 purchase to meet them. This influencer marketing strategy is not just a great idea, it’s a brilliant one, going down as one of the best Gen Z marketing campaigns. This endeavor brought happiness to the fans, great branding to Sephora, as well as a bonus in the form of a lot of sales.
Find a Cause and Back It
With Gen Zers being on social media and the internet for a large portion of their days, they’re aware of the many problems and hardships going on around the world. Creating a marketing campaign that goes past just selling a product and focuses on actually making a difference will attract this generation more so than anything else.
For example, one of the hot brands engaging Gen Z is Love Your Melon, who donated hats to childhood cancer patients. Gen Zers felt good buying these hats and wore them knowing they helped out a great cause. Plus, with the huge social media craze that Gen Zers have, the brand gained a lot of exposure as users posted all over their social pages and started conversations all about the good things they saw.
Aside from just donating hats to childhood cancer patients, Love Your Melon also took the extra step of donating 50% of their net profits to the Love Your Melon fund, helping improve the lives of the children battling cancer. To attract the Gen Zers even more, the brand has also released customized hats with school logos, sorority letters, sports teams, and even partnering with other brands and causes, bringing forth a connection to the brand and their personal lives.
Form an Intimate Connection
Gen Zers like things that are real. They like seeing real people, solving real problems, and witnessing real events. Creating marketing campaigns that tell a story and leave them feeling a certain way will draw them in toward a particular product or service. A great example of this type of marketing is Lokai. They market their products to show you that no matter where you are in life, you can stay hopeful by wearing their bracelets. In use, this tactic creates an emotional connection with the customer that makes them more likely to come back in the future.
What makes this brand so unique to the Gen Zers is that they partner with specific causes around the world with their bracelets, and highlight specific colors and designs for each organization. For example, they have a pink design for breast cancer and a lilac color for diabetes.
Many young kids are exposed to hard problems at a young age due to social media, and supporting a cause they may know someone suffering through gives them the strength they need to get through the hard times, bringing forth the strong emotional connection to the brand.
Create aVideo Strategy
To no one’s surprise, one of the top Gen Z marketing trends is video marketing. More so than other generations, Gen Zers love video. In fact, they love it so much that it’s one of their favorite mediums to learn! That’s no surprise considering that Gen Zers spend over 3 hours on YouTube and similar platforms every day. In other words, video marketing is the secret ingredient for creating content that the Gen Zers will love and interact with. While video is what attracts this generation, it’s what’s in it—the content—that will make them stay.
A brand that continually generates phenomenal video content is Seventeen Magazine. With over 1 million YouTube follower and thousands of original collaborations and creative ideas, their users are always on the lookout for new content and ways to stay engaged. As a matter of fact, many who follow them and similar video producing brands actually memorize their content schedule (and even set up post notifications) so they always know when the next video goes live.
In Review: Is Gen Z Marketing the Future?
Creating a marketing strategy that caters to Generation Z customers is incredibly critical, especially since Gen Zers have such a loud online voice and are quick to start and follow trends. Make sure to keep the four marketing strategies we covered today in mind, all of which will help you attract Gen Z customers! Let’s take a second look:
- Use Influencer Marketing
- Find a Cause and Back It
- Form an Intimate Connection
- Create a Video Strategy
Contributed by Hannah Gabaldon, a creative content writer with a passion for digital and influencer marketing. She works at Aumcore, digital marketing agency based in NYC, and writes on everything that ranges from creating the best content marketing plan to social media marketing.