As a Millennial (those aged between 20-35) I am what is considered to be the first of the two true tech generations. Technology like computers and the internet have been commonplace for more of my life than not, however, compared to the new Generation Z (those aged between 11-20) I am a bit of a technophobe. To Generation Z the things I grew up with; myspace, dial-up internet and only 5 free TV channels are strange concepts. They have always had the answers they need with the click of a button and a social media world on their smartphone.
I have found whilst most brands know how to market to Millennials, Gen Z remains elusive. In this blog, I will be investigating some of the differences between the two generations and how to win over Generation Z.
To Millennials, social media is a way of connecting with friends and sharing aspects of our lives. However, Gen Z views it much more as a way to entertain themselves, favouring visual content such as videos and memes. Brands need to capitalise on this by creating content that they want to watch and share with their friends. Gen Z consumes content at an alarming rate, due in part to the culture of instant information they have grown up with, they are a generation who with smartphones have always had the internet in their pockets.
My first phone was Nokia 3310 (remember those) all you got were calls, texts and of course snake. Gen Z however, has been using smartphones from the get-go and view most content through either a phone or tablet. Therefore, mobile-friendly content is vital if you hope to connect with them.
Whilst we were the first generation that demanded less fakery from the internet (we have a particular dislike for photoshop), Gen Z has really taken it to a new level. They don’t want to just be the subjects of another marketing campaign they want to feel part of a movement, to see behind the scenes. This desire for authenticity from both generations has led to a rise in the popularity of influencers, particularly amongst Gen Z.
Social Media Platforms
Unlike Millennials, Gen Z has grown up having access to a wide range of social media from a young age, this has led to them using more platforms at once. They can bounce between up to 5 screens at a time, as opposed to our 3 screens, this makes Gen Z much harder to reach than Millennials. In order to get through you need to focus on the platforms they favour; particularly Snap Chat, Instagram and YouTube. Gen Z tends to favour these platforms over Facebook and Twitter (our favourites) as they are more fast-paced and visually lead.
Like most young people Generation Z wants their independence and to be taken seriously, hopefully by looking at the differences between the two tech generations it will enable you to market your brand to both groups more successfully.