Gen Z. The original “digital natives.” A generation that has never known life without unlimited digital access. With a perpetual fixation on Millennials, many marketers are overlooking this generation that is unlike any other generation that has come before. They do so at their own peril, as this generation is already showing its tremendous ability to impact consumer marketing. More
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According to Adweek, Millennials as teen consumers were virtually ignored by marketers, who were waiting for them to acquire discretionary income rather than engaging them early. Only later did brand marketers realize that with early access to technology and social media, Millennials became the first generation to consume and influence much earlier than previous generations. By the time the lightbulb came on for many brand marketers, it was too late – that ship had sailed. More
Just when you’re confident that you’ve figured out how to reach the Millennial market, along comes a new audience: Generation Z. This group makes up a quarter of the U.S. population and by 2020 will account for 40% of all consumers. And while many are teens still living with their parents or grandparents, Generation Z holds nearly $44 billion in spending power. If you consider their influence on household spending, that number can top out at $200 billion.
That’s a lot of money on the line, so understanding the needs, aspirations, and behaviors of Generation Z should be a top priority for marketers in 2017. If you want to reach them, you have to understand how they think. Here are a few thoughts to get you started.
Offer True Multi-Channel Experiences
Generation Z are digital natives in the truest form. They’ve been completely influenced by technology their entire lives, and spend most of their time online. They’d rather have a digital conversation than a face-to-face discussion any day.
Consequently, the easiest way to reach Gen Z is through your social media presence. Social media is where they live and play, and where they discover the brands they love. This generation is used to seamlessly moving between television, laptop, desktop, tablet, and smartphone—from websites to social media to apps. Smart brands will invest in digital platforms that allow these consumers to co-create shared brand experiences. Gen Z is hands-on: they want to try it, take it apart, and recreate it.
Be Truly Engaging
Authenticity is a must with Generation Z. They’re savvy, and they want to see that a brand is authentic and aligns with their own values. They don’t stick around for brands that don’t ring true. They want to be amused, and appreciate social content that is funny and entertaining. A great example is Chubbies. Constantly posting humorous photos to Instagram and other social platforms, Chubbies’ frat-boy mentality and the catchphrase “sky’s out, thighs out” set the brand apart.
Another key part of authenticity is engagement. Real, two-way conversations, where questions are answered and relationships are forged are the way to Generation Z’s heart and wallet.
Recognize Their Mindset
Gen Zs are much more realistic than Millennials. They’ve lived through 9/11, witnessed an ever-increasing number of school shootings, and watched their parents lose jobs during the Great Recession. As a result, this generation is more cautious and more focused on social causes, as well as their own financial futures. Having seen the effects of the failing economy firsthand, Gen Z consumers will work hard to avoid debt and are less likely to make impulse purchases.
They also have a genuine desire to have a positive impact on the world. Show that your brand believes in social good by finding something you really care about as a company, and let that passion shine through in your marketing messages. Share your story so that Gen Z can determine if your brand values match their own.
Video Content Is Huge
With 90% of Generation Z saying they watch YouTube videos daily, video content is one of the most effective ways to engage with this generation. They even get their television content—both broadcast and cable options—through streaming options like Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu.
Videos that are both educational and entertaining are especially effective. Thinking along the lines of “edutainment” can reap big rewards. But this group is not just watching videos; they’re making their own, too. Give these teens and young adults a chance to shine by creating user generated content contests and watch your audience grow by leaps and bounds.
Look for ways to let your brand personality shine through in your marketing, because Gen Z consumers want relationships with brands they can genuinely connect with. If you’re interested in learning more about how you can reach this generation and others, give us a call. We’re here to help.
The Moms of Generation Z
Oh, happy day! According to a new report by the Retail Advertising and Marketing Association, I’m officially cool. Why? Because I’m the mom of a tween – which means, according to the report, that I’m cooler than the moms of non-tweens. Tween moms are more likely to be on Facebook (true), read more blogs than other adults (true), listen to Top 40 radio (true again), and use our web and mobile technology to do more research online than other adults.
Tweens (or Generation Z as demographers are now beginning to label kids ages 8-12) have emerged as the new “it” market in the last few years, leading marketers to want to know more about their gatekeeper moms. It turns out that we’re a very busy bunch, but I guess we’re busy in different ways.
We’re very adept at multitasking: while using any media, more than three-quarters of us say that we’re also doing laundry and housework. And while our other mom friends are listening to rock and oldies most often, more than one-third of tween moms listen to rock and top 40/pop music.
Social media has quickly become a favorite for many moms, but tween moms use Facebook more than moms of other age groups. It could be because we enjoy catching up with friends and colleagues, but we’re also fanatically monitoring our own tween’s Facebook pages. But for whatever reason we’re online, we’re also tuned into the growing popularity of retailers’ social networking sites that are helping us track coupons, as well as in-store events and promotions.
I’d like to suggest the following theory: perhaps it’s not so much that tween moms are cooler than other moms, but that we’re so busy and in such transition that we have to multi-task just to survive. Tweens aren’t yet old enough to be given free rein to do what they please, but they’re old enough to have very strong opinions and to fight for that freedom they so desperately seek. Their voices are changing as their hormones are raging.
And while I’d like to believe I’m cooler than the average mom, the fact is that at this life stage I’m just extremely busy and grabbing onto whatever tools will help keep my life sane.
So for this weekend I’ll happily embrace my status as a cool mom, because next week my son turns 13 and I’ll have to hang up my title.
For years, well before adopting the moniker of influencer marketing, brands have sought endorsements from celebrities and people of note. Generations that came before Millennials, Gen Z and Gen Alphas—notably Generation X and Baby Boomers—can also be swayed by the right message from the right person at the right time.
Influencer marketing has become the catchall term for certain types of celebrities, experts, thought leaders, bloggers, and content creators who use their online presence to affect a group of people’s purchasing choices. It is one of the fastest-growing brand-building strategies, nearly tripling in value to an estimated $9.7 billion in recent years.
To develop killer influencer marketing strategies for all generations, it’s essential to understand the formula of the message, influencer, place, and time most effective for each generation. More
What Is Generation Mom?
We all know the established generations of Mom: the Boomers, Gen X and Gen Y. But are all Moms equal, or do the generations dictate their parenting values and core marketing preferences? My colleague Stacy DeBroff, founder and CEO of MomCentral Consulting, recently conducted a survey to find out how ages and stages impact Moms.
In looking at generational differences, the survey originally assumed that a Mom’s generational characteristics would deeply influence her parenting style, attitudes about brand messaging, and use of social and traditional media. Surprisingly enough, however, the survey showed that regardless of Boomer, Gen X or Gen Y status, certain universal truths for all Moms emerged in four key areas:
- Moms would rather stay at home instead of forging ahead on their career path
- Moms would forgo a bigger paycheck to spend more time with their kids
- Moms say contentment in kids trumps future success
- Moms put parenting ahead of their marriage
When Moms surveyed were asked “What Makes a Great Mom?” and given 25 choices, these Top 3 emerged:
- Spending quality time with her children
- Raising children with good manners
- Setting boundaries and keeping them
When asked about their perceived inadequacies, the Top 3 responses were:
- Moms feel guilty for being short-tempered with their family
- Moms feel guilty because they don’t play with their children enough
- Moms feel guilt for not spending enough time with their kids
All Moms Yearn to Connect
The study also revealed that Moms are feeling more isolated than ever before – due primarily to today’s mobile society and their own attempts to achieve “Super Mom” status. This isolation, coupled with the feelings of guilt, has resulted in Moms seeking alternative ways to reach out and connect. Social media has become the conduit between Moms and their trusted connections to other Moms and brands. Much like Moms want relationships with fellow Moms, they also want relationships with the brands they love – and when they feel engaged, they are more likely to make a purchase, or recommend a brand to their friends.
What’s Important to Generation Mom?
What’s important to Generation Mom? Her family, her passions, her relationships, her children. Generation Mom feels a deep need to connect with the world around her – and social media has become the way in which that happens. Twitter and Facebook now mimic the neighborhood friends of previous decades. They help women expand beyond their immediate worlds and make new friends, while reconnecting with old friends. The Internet also provides Moms with access to ready-made communities that provide support for those who knit, do yoga, need help with potty training, or other issues.
As social media becomes the new “picket fence” for Mom conversations, the age of those Moms appears to be proving irrelevant. Regardless of age, brands will find her online. There may be some slight media preferences by age – Gen X Moms read more magazine articles than Gen Y Moms for example – but all generations surveyed embrace social media. And whether a Mom is 25, 35 or 45 – shared parenting values bring them all together as Generation Mom.
When marketing to moms, is your brand participating in the emergent platforms where Moms are congregating online? Does your messaging map to a Mom’s core values?
By the time TikTok burst on the U.S. scene in 2017, it already had a following due to its first iteration as an app called Musical.ly. Since then, it has overcome a long list of problems—including increased pressure from legislators and copycat features from long-standing social media giants—to become one of America’s fastest-growing social media companies. More
We don’t always need a crystal ball to see the future. However, the current state of CPG marketing trends gives us a lot of information about how things are going and how we can expect them to develop over the coming years. Although disruption can happen and evolving technology has the power to divert the current path, we can see some solid trends that are sure to be around for a while. More
COVID-19 is changing consumer behavior across all industries. Some of those changes are easy to see, and others were easy to predict. Who could miss the worldwide shortage of toilet paper that we’re still experiencing, even today? We probably could have predicted the increase in online shopping and stockpiling our pantries as well.
We don’t know yet how permanent these changes will be, though we can take a few hints from history. For instance, smart gyms and telehealth services were already on the rise before the pandemic. Continued popularity with consumers once life returns to “normal” isn’t hard to foresee. More