Social media natives and valuing authenticity over anything, Gen-Z (born between the mid-90s and early 2010s) are making waves as consumers. They’ve got a collective $360B of disposable income to spend – so it’s about time to make use of it.
As the significantly more tech-savvy and socially conscious generation come of age, marketers have been forced to adapt their strategies to connect with them effectively – or else!
We’ve got at least 3 Gen-Zers in the Puddle office, which is essential for not making the same mistake as The Body Shop (who got roasted in a company critique, and righted their wrongs by hiring a whole board of 20-somethings).
In this article, we’ll explore the five essential strategies for marketing to Gen-Z.
Establish clear values and mission
Gen-Z are highly values-driven. Social and environmental causes are to fight for, and so they expect the brands they engage with to share their values. To connect with Gen-Z, it’s crucial to be authentic, and communicate your values and mission clearly.
- Identify the causes or values that align with your brand.
- Create content that demonstrates your commitment to these values.
- Support social and environmental initiatives, and make sure to showcase your involvement.
Be transparent and accountable
Gen-Z are sceptical of traditional advertising tactics. They value transparency and authenticity above all else. To build trust with this generation, be open about your products, practices, and any shortcomings. Admit when you make mistakes, and show accountability.
- Share behind-the-scenes content to give Gen-Z a glimpse into your company’s operations.
- Respond promptly and genuinely to customer feedback, both positive and negative.
- Be transparent about your product’s sourcing, manufacturing, and ethical considerations.
Establish your brand’s personality
Gen-Z gravitates towards brands with a distinct personality. Whether it’s humour, quirkiness or a strong sense of purpose, infuse your brand with a personality that resonates, and feels real. Consistency in tone and messaging is key. It’s easy to see through posts that have been overthought, so don’t be afraid to take risks and experiment!
- Develop a brand style guide that outlines your personality traits.
- Create content that reflects your brand’s personality across all platforms.
- Engage with Gen-Z on social media using your brand’s unique voice.
Gen-Z are constantly bombarded with information, so to capture their attention, your content needs to not only be informative but also entertaining. Use interactive content like quizzes, polls, and gamified experiences to keep them engaged. TikTok filters are increasingly popular, too.
- Experiment with interactive social media features like polls and live streams.
- Create quizzes or challenges related to your products or industry.
- Incorporate storytelling and humour into your content to make it more enjoyable.
Build a community
A powerful tool for reaching Gen-Z is by making them feel part of an active, supportive community. A helpful way of doing this is through influencer marketing. This generation values the opinions of individuals they admire and trust. Partner with influencers who align with your brand’s values, and have a genuine connection with their followers. It also helps to be active in terms of customer engagement. If you’re quick to respond to any queries, via email, form, or comment section, and do it with personality and empathy, they’ll favour you above your competitors.
Equally important is to meet them where they are. You’re not going to find the perfect Gen-Z audience by posting on Facebook. TikTok and Instagram are where it’s at – with video content that keeps their eyes on you.
- Identify influencers who resonate with your target audience and brand.
- Collaborate with influencers on authentic, creative campaigns.
- Encourage user-generated content and community engagement through influencer partnerships.
Marketing to Gen-Z requires a deep understanding of their values, preferences, and expectations. With transparency, authenticity, and real personality, you can connect with this generation effectively. Gen-Z’s loyalty can be earned through genuine engagement and a commitment to shared values, making them a valuable audience for businesses willing to adapt their strategies.