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The time has come for brands to shift their marketing strategies from Millennials to Gen Z. This new generation of customers has now become one of the highest spenders as well as users of social media, dominating mainstream media with over 45% in 2021 alone. This generation is marked by their exposure to the internet, with most growing up with the internet well in use. Though the statistics and sales showcase their overwhelming presence, many companies have failed to adapt quickly to what they want. This is primarily due to the fact that Gen Z is a generation that throws out conventional media in favor of a presence on social media. They represent a whole new way of thinking, distancing themselves from the concepts of cable TV and billboards in favor of brands that showcase personality on a personal level of relatability. In this article, we explore some of the best ways marketers and brands can successfully target Gen Z and engage them to create meaningful leads and conversions.
1. Focus on the value and not the product
What Gen Z wants is a brand that can give them products and services that improve their lives in subtle ways. They are used to the usual ‘push’ and ‘hard-sell’ based strategies and can spot generic corporate messaging from a mile away. They are put off by brands that feel like a corporation. Because of this awareness, they are instead more drawn to brands who put out their products and services as concepts that can boost their daily lives. They seek to gain an understanding of the underlying benefits and experiences an offering can bring them, and are drawn to value-based marketing strategies.
2. Short form videos are the way to go
Gen Z is a generation that has a high affinity to video-based content. They want snappy videos that are eye-catching and get to the point quickly. Their shorter attention span means that companies usually have 5 seconds at most to create an impression and convince a customer to watch more. TikTok is considered to be a testament to this principle, with over 60% of the platform’s 2 billion users belonging to this generation. Most brands have realized this and have successfully adapted their ads to showcase the best aspects in the beginning, appealing to their target demographics with ease.
3. Use the right platforms
It has become increasingly important for brands to target their demographic accurately. Promoting a cool and fresh concept on Facebook and LinkedIn won’t necessarily give brands the Gen Z exposure they need, since the individuals in this generation don’t use those apps as often as others. The point of the matter is that though they use social media often, they don’t use all the mainstream platforms available. Most of their attention is only focused on a handful of apps including, TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube. Creating an appealing campaign will only work if the demographic in mind is present on the platform the brand is actively promoting on.
4. Create engagement heavy content
Gen Z stands out from the other generations due to their use of engagement tools. Where other generations might scroll without really interacting, Gen Z actively presents their opinions, queries, and values under a brand’s post. The best way to capitalize on this aspect is to create content that influences them to like, share and/or comment on posts. This can be done by actively seeking out their feedback through free-answer questions and polls.
5. Inclusivity is key
This generation is one that is deeply involved in social issues that have seemingly been pushed under the rug and avoided. One of the main issues some brands face is the lack of inclusivity in their offerings. Diversity in race, body size, and other individual traits have become a big factor in determining whether a brand is worth investing in or not. This generation of customers no longer want to purchase from a brand that only showcases aspects that can be related with one group of people. Instead, they actively seek brands that try to be as inclusive as possible in their offerings and messaging.
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