Digital Natives: Adapting Your Marketing Strategy to the Gen Z Crowd

A lot of Generation Z kids are starting to mature, as the eldest ones in the group are now 22 years old. A recent report, “Rise of Gen Z: New challenge for retailers,” says that this generation, consisting of those born 1997 onwards, find comfort in shared events and self-learning. They grew up when the internet was picking up speed, and social media platforms were popping up left and right, after all. There’s so much content on these platforms to consume now, and there are millions of them posted and shared every day.

Gen-Zers are adept at learning on their own because their library is limited by the boundaries of the world wide web. They are expected to make up over 40% of the U.S. population by 2020, and will likely be dominating user spending soon. With the amount of information that they consume every day, you should change the way you market to this generation if you want to be visible in their radar.

Master the Gists

A recent report from consulting firm Sparks & Honey says that Gen-Zers only have an eight-second attention span. Why would they watch a one minute video of a CEO giving a motivational speech, when they can skip the ad and view content they actually care about? Tell the gist of your brand messages at the start of your content to draw their attention and steer clear of flowery words.

Utilize the Power of Video

Gen-Zers are true digital natives, according to a report from management consulting firm McKinsey and Company called “True Gen’: Generation Z and its implications for companies.” They live and breathe through the screens of their smartphones, tablets, and laptops. A kid from Raleigh, NC can collaborate with a peer from New York City on a musical or artistic project easily. In fact, the band Superorganism, composed mostly of Gen-Z kids and millennials from different countries, started out by sending each other demos of their work.

Because it takes these digital natives a short time to focus on something, they prefer to learn through images and video. In fact, a report from educational services provider Pearson, entitled “Beyond Millennials: The Next Generation of Learners,” showed that Gen Z prefers YouTube over textbooks when it comes to learning materials.

As such, short, informative, and entertaining videos should be your top priority when it comes to creating your marketing content. While articles, both online and offline, are still relevant, they should be used as supplements to your visual materials.

Double Down on Your Online Presence

Marketing team working

Your brand cannot survive on word-of-mouth and traditional media alone. Though a lot of young people still listen to the radio in the background, their home is made of ones and zeroes. Your site should follow the latest trends in web design if you want to keep this crowd on your website. The style of 2019 is all about loud but controlled elements, 2D and 3D objects mixed together, interactive animations, and of course, mobile-friendly content. Think of your website as your setup at a trade show or your product launch stage. It should be an experience they’ll enjoy so much that they’ll share it with their friends.

The Gen Z population is slowly making its way into the workforce, giving them even more influence over their spending. As such, it should be every business’ mission to adapt to this generation much faster than they did with others. After all, it only takes eight seconds for these digital natives to click skip.

Leave a Comment