Marketing to Gen X and Millennials was one thing – but reaching this latest generation of young buyers is a whole new ballgame. Gen Z is built differently. If you want to tap into their $143 billion in spending power, you need carefully honed marketing strategies.
We’re talking about the buyers who were born in 1997 or later. This is a wave of consumers who grew up with social media, smartphones, and endless research opportunities. They’ve always had Google in their back pocket, and they are considered by many to be the most critical consumer group yet.
These guys hold brands to high standards, and they won’t cave to simple advertising tactics. So, if you want to start reaching them in 2023 and beyond, you need to implement some new Gen Z marketing methods – starting now.
To jumpstart your plan, we’re sharing five sure-fire ways to meet the Gen Z mindset. Let’s take a look.
1. Make the Messages Brief and Concise
The average Gen Zer doesn’t mince words, and their attention span is 4 seconds shorter than that of most Millennials. In fact, the group is often referred to as “Zoomers” in marketing spheres, due to their rapid-fire ingestion of content, both online and in person.
When you think about the Gen Z mindset, think succinct – quick videos, memes, emojis. You’re speaking to an audience that likes to chomp down on bite-sized information, predominantly in visual contexts. The more efficiently (and interestingly) you can convey your message, the better.
2. Prioritize Video Content
Speaking of quick content, we can’t ignore the elephant in the room: video. Between YouTube, TikTok, and Instagram, short-form video has almost fully encompassed Gen Z’s attention. To get in front of teens and people in their early 20s, you need to prioritize video marketing.
You’ve likely already heard about the importance of posting on YouTube and Instagram, but don’t discredit TikTok and its short-form videos. The app now has over 680 million global users, and roughly a quarter of these users are between the ages of 10 and 19. That makes TikTok a prime Gen Z marketing platform.
Regardless of whether you’re advertising on social media or on your own website, make sure your video content is:
- Eye-catching and engaging
- Easy to understand
Another Gen Z branding tip is to incorporate real people in your video content. If there’s one thing this generation wants, it’s authenticity. Partnering with genuine customers or well-known influencers is a great way to boost your credibility (and views).
When deciding who to include in your videos, think about the qualities and desires of your targeted audience. Find an influencer, public figure, or “regular” shopper that represents these characteristics – like makeup company Alleyoop did when they choose a slew of microinfluencers to serve as the face of their TikTok campaigns.
3. Meet Them During the Research Process
As we mentioned, Gen Zers are considered to be a highly critical consumer group. They don’t view shopping and consumption as previous generations do – they want higher-quality items, but they’re also more conscious about their spending habits.
Furthermore, Gen Z really cares about the kind of brands they choose to support. Since January 2020, small business spending has increased more than 260% amongst Gen Zers on Afterpay – 80% higher rates amongst Millennials.
Gen Z is heavily researching both the products they buy and where they come from. They don’t just log onto a website and purchase the first item that meets their needs – they spend time reading reviews, scouting options on social media, and learning about companies.
If you want to appeal to the Gen Z mindset, you need to meet them during this crucial research process, before they’ve made a purchase decision. Not only that, but you need to explain why (1) they should listen to you and (2) your brand is worth supporting.
This is where creating blog content supports your generation Z marketing strategies. It doesn’t matter if you run a small business or a huge, well-known company like BetterHelp – blogging offers an excellent opportunity to enter Gen Z’s research process and present your credibility, knowledge, and background.
4. Use Their Language
The Gen Z target market speaks a different language – and it’s time your brand got on board with the latest emoji use, slang, memes, and inside jokes.
Communication is key when it comes to any marketing efforts. When you speak their language, Gen Z is better able to understand and relate to your brand. The best way to learn their language? Follow Gen Z creators, watch their content, and take notes on their vocab.
A word of caution: remember, Gen Zers hate inauthentic brands. When using hip language, remember that it needs to sound natural – not forced or “cringey.” Think cool aunt, not the embarrassing parent who’s trying too hard to fit in.
The best way to make sure you’re not missing the mark? Hire a Gen Z person to add to your team, or work with marketers who keep up with the latest trends. You don’t want to sound tone-deaf or behind the times, so run your messages by someone wellversed in the Gen Z language.
5. Build a Presence on the Right Social Platform
Our final Gen Z marketing tip: pour your energy and time into the right social media platforms.
If you’re trying to hit Gen X and some Millenials, Facebook might be worth your while – but it’s not where you’ll find the young people today. The average Gen Z social user is:
- Getting their news from Twitter
- Entertaining themselves on TikTok
- Sharing everyday moments on Snapchat
- Posting about their lives on Instagram
Although TikTok has taken the world by storm in the last few years (especially Gen Z), Instagram still holds immense advertising power with up to 92% of Gen Zers using the app. Chances are, if you’re trying to attract customers in their teens or 20s, you need to spend most of your time marketing on those two platforms – more so than on Twitter, and definitely more than you do on Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.
Oh, and don’t forget about YouTube. Gen Z watch time for videos has increased by over 270% in the last year alone, and these shoppers pretty much expect their favorite brands to have some kind of presence on the platform.
Above all, Generation Z is on the hunt for brands that are transparent and genuinely care about their customers. At the same time, they’re not willing to sift through long posts or watch 20- minute videos to do so. To snag their attention, you need to strike hard and accurately.
That’s what Inbound.Studio helps you do. Our experienced marketing team stays at the forefront of all the latest social media and video trends – so that we can ensure brands like yours hit the nail on the head.
If your company needs to better understand the Gen Z mindset, let’s talk. Get in touch with our team and we’ll assess the most crucial steps you need to take.