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They’ve flown the nest and are making their presence known to the world. “They” are those born after 1995 and have inherited the moniker “Generation Z’ers” from those who make it their business to create a unique brand to distinguish one generation of humanity from another. This new aging group is earning a reputation of becoming a real challenge to the marketing establishment even before they have a license to fly solo among the clouds with older versions of themselves. The first generation to be born with a mastery of all things tech is following the Millennial generation who were the revolution’s beta version. Z’ers are dropping out of the nest seemingly preordained to demonstrate a mastery of the technology that has so completely disrupted social and marketing norms that had taken former generations a century to establish. This newest generation accounts for 25.9% of the United States population.
Marketers, many of whom are reeling from past efforts to make sense of the Millennial generation, are standing a safe distance away from embracing the newest group of consumers, licking their wounds from what clearly didn’t work for the previous crowd. Sometimes being a pioneer carries greater risk and subsequently more serious casualty. A recent study revealed that only 5% of marketers were specifically targeting Generation Z members as 50 percent of them continued to pursue aging Baby Boomers. With Generation Z poised to spend $143 billion in America’s marketplace, it is time to throw extreme caution to the wind and get into the game no matter how daunting it may appear.
The most tech savvy and information consuming generation in history, Generation Z’ers tend to be less focused on a single thought and demonstrate an amazing ability to multitask but have a lack of patience with a single subject. In order to successfully market to this generation, it is important to recognize how this new set of consumers differs from previous generations. Not every member of any group or demographic segment can be expected to see the world from an identical perspective and follow a single behavioral pattern, and grouping an entire generation of people into a single marketing segment has its pitfalls, but each generation is shaped by the context in which they arise. Always connected, Z’ers move around the online world with ease and demonstrate a unique mastery of everything mobile.
Until now, this new generation’s spending habits were aided by their parents. While the choices of what to buy was derived from personal wishes, the source of spending more often than not flowed from parents’ accounts, but that is changing. Entering the work-world at a time of economic revival, Generation Z’ers are more financially stable, better educated and more entrepreneurial minded than their predecessors. They are more likely to be motivated to make a purchase by social media influencers than by celebrities and are more socially diverse and conscious than former generations. Their trusted brands are identified as Google, Netflix, Amazon, YouTube and PlayStation while Baby Boomers trust brands like USPS, UPS, Hershey, the Weather Channel and Cheerios. Clearly, traditional marketing strategies and concepts will not work with this newest group of consumers.
Prepare to reinvent your brand, embrace authenticity and focus attention on providing valuable content that reflects this generation’s position on social issues and promotes conversation and engagement. Be innovative and willing to explore new marketing trends that connect with this emerging generation of consumers.
To learn more about how you can best connect your brand with Generation Z, call Junction Creative Solutions (Junction) today at 678-686-1125.