14th February 2017

Forget Millennials. Start Targeting Generation Z

Forget Millennials. Start Targeting Generation Z

Up until now, Millennials have been seen as the number one social group that all marketers should be looking to target. This is perhaps placing too much importance on them, as there are plenty of opportunities to make revenue through other social groups. One such social group that is growing in market value is Generation Z. These are young people aged 15 to 24 with significant spending power brought about through either family money or newly acquired employment. This demographic is set to change the face of retail. Communicative and confident, marketers are already developing clever ways of targeting this consumer set. It’s time you created a strategy so that your brand can also make waves in this particular pool of consumers. So how do you do it?

Social media and more social media – this consumer set is always online. They love to shop and they love to consume. They have grown up with technology all around them and woven it into their lives at every opportunity. This is great from a marketing perspective as it means that your brand has a clear and obvious way of targeting its customer base. The types of ways you can use ocial media to target Generation Z are endless. Instagram is one way. These kids love taking pictures and sharing them with their mates. They willingly will follow your brand on Instagram. Unlike previous generations who viewed social media as a means of keeping in touch with family and friends, Generation Z-ers look at it as a way of also following their favourite brands and as a means of shopping. Generation Z-ers are not shy about using social media buy buttons to purchase the latest clothes and shoes. These kids consider online shopping to be a means of killing boredom and view it as a pastime all on its own. Bearing in mind that these consumers are always “on” there is a great opportunity here for marketers to target them around the clock.

Generation Z-ers are captivated by brands that offer products with added social value. This consumer set is tuned into social issues and causes a whole lot more than its predecessors. They frequently report wanting to make a difference, as a key motivational factor for why they purchase products. They want to know that when they spend their money, some of that currency is going towards affecting positive change. Failing that, they want assurance that they are not causing any harm to the planet in environmental terms, or in a social sense when they make a purchase. Letting members of Generation Z know that they have not contributed to their carbon footprints when they pick up one of your garments is always appreciated. Ethically sourced materials and donations made to worthy charitable causes by your brand, should always be shouted about.

Generation Z is renowned for giving cult status to various different brands, Converse being a good example. Consumer-gifted cult status can be achieved if you are willing to offer a brand-led experience. That is an experience for the consumer that is curated and dictated, by you the brand. For example, brands like Mac set up their stores so that kids can sample their products, get to know their story and their values via in-store multimedia and they, in essence, end up providing a space for kids to hang out. This is what Generation Z-ers want when they shop; something much bigger and bolder than just a retail transaction. They want an entire experience that they can immerse themselves in.

Your online content must be on-point. Remember this consumer group is more inquisitive than most and loves reading online copy that interests and inspires them. Some brands cleverly encourage users to generate their content themselves, through opening up their blogs in order to feature guest bloggers, who often promote their previous experiences of the brand, including how they shopped and what are their style tips. This approach combines social proof and editorial inspiration.

Generation Z is the future. Tap into how these kids browse, research and shop and you can set up a long-term relationship with this consumer set that is not only mutually beneficial, but the seeds sown will harvest to last the long haul.

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