Nov 20, 2018 6:51:42 AM | 6 Min Read

Marketing to the Next Generation – Gen Z

Posted By Sam Tetsos
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Marketing to the Next Generation – Gen Z

Well, it’s officially happened; the generation of youth glued to their smartphones are becoming adults. Projected to make up roughly 32% of the American population in 2019, Generation Z is slowly becoming a larger market segment than their parents, the baby boomers, and the millennials that preceded them.

The trouble is – how do you market to a group that is defined by its overstimulation, tech savviness, and rapid browsing habits? Here are some useful tips on  Gen Z marketing.

Mobile Marketing

Reach them where they're most active – on their phones

When talking to parents in 2018, you’d be hard pressed to avoid having a conversation about kids and their seemingly endless screen time. According to some sources, nearly half of Generation Z spends 10 hours or more of screen time on their devices.

It’s evident that mobile phones are now intricately involved in consumer buying behavior. This can be seen from the increased popularity of mobile wallets, mobile bill payments, and apps designed around having a consumer’s credit card attached to their account. Many brands are also utilizing their consumers phones as an opportunity to reward consumers for their participation in promotions. Leading consumer brands like Kellogg’s are expanding upon programs like Kellogg’s Family Rewards with digital gift cards, media, and more. 

Kelloggs Family Rewards

Reward Programs

Give them something desirable

Do you ever have a hard time trying to pick out a gift for your teenaged niece/nephew? Marketers face these same dilemmas when trying to find new ways to engage younger consumers. While cash is still king in the world of promotions, a unique reward offering can be an extremely effective way to capture the eye of young consumers and their notoriously dynamic attention spans.

Premium apps like Spotify and Lyft have become integrated into our consumers’ way of life. Rewarding them with these digital services is more enticing to a consumer than traditional discounting or any other of the vanilla offers they’re bombarded with on a day-to-day basis.

P&G has done a great job at reaching a younger audience by leveraging Lyft credits to drive sales:

P&G Partnership with Lyft

Furthermore, brands who offer unique rewards and experiences to their consumers can better differentiate from their competitors and tell more impactful stories in their branding. Slim Jim’s did a great job of this recently in their NBA 2K19 promotion, building brand affiliation with Gen Z with the ever-popular basketball video game and rewarding their consumers with in game reward codes. 

Focus On The Consumer Experience

A seamless consumer experience is key to high engagement levels

The days of cutting out a printed rebate and mailing it via carrier pigeon are long gone. Consumers in 2018 are not engaging with offers inherently designed to create slippage, and brands need to make a conscious effort to reduce the barriers of participation as much as possible.

A seamless consumer experience is crucial in engaging consumers with your promotion, but perhaps even more critical in ensuring repeat purchase and engagement beyond the initial sale. A poorly executed digital/retail activation can not only lead to poor ROI short term but can also increase bad customer reviews and negative brand perception, which are very impactful on the purchase decisions of young consumers.

Here’s a great example of how Energizer made the move to a fully digital rebate offering, with 5 retail specific components: 

Energizer Bunny

Topics: demographic profile, GenZ, Shopper Marketing

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