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3 Specific Tips for Reaching Gen Z on Social Media

How to engage the most elusive generation with social marketing

Generation Z, the new kids on the block after Millennials, now holds $44 billion in purchasing power. But they have different online and mobile habits, making it difficult to connect with them on social media—yet every business needs to know how to reach these increasingly important trendsetters. Below are three unexpected marketing approaches for reaching Gen Z. It turns out that the generation that does not remember a time before smartphones have some unexpected preferences.

Reach Out Creatively

Generation Z—occasionally referred to as iGen—is more willing than other generations to engage with brands, but they want online communication that fits their expectations. Some key expectations:

  • Offer one-on-one interactions with brands for questions, requests for more information, and general friendliness. Treating Gen Z as one-size-fits all is a definite turn off.
  • Foster peer-to-peer conversations across social media platforms. This gives Gen Z customers and fans a chance to build a deeper connection with the brand by connecting with others who like the brand, too.
  • Have someone on your team focused on trying out new Gen Z engagement platforms. Even if they are not a fit for your brand, testing new social media platforms is a great way to stay ahead of the curve (and especially better than paying huge amounts of money to catch up!).

Limit Your Ads To The Right Time and Place

Gen Zers are more ad-averse than previous generations. Consider:

  • Gen Z is the more likely to skip ads than any previous generation
  • Gen Z is especially resistant to pre-roll ads that they can’t skip as well as mobile pop-up ads
  • Gen Z is more tolerant of mobile app rewards and skippable pre-roll ads
  • Gen Z members have an average attention span of 8 seconds, compared to 12 seconds for Millennials
  • Bottom line: Make your ads shorter, more compelling from the first second, and give Gen Z the chance to skip—doing so will actually win you more views

Millward Brown study examining social media use between Gen X, Millennials, and Gen Z noted more resistance to ads from this youngest, despite the fact that Gen Z spends the most time consuming digital media. The study found that Gen Z responds best to funny video clips or endorsements from respected influencers.

Forget Perfection, Be “Real”

Generation Z sees through the false images of perfection that so many brands advertise. Instead, they appreciate more realistic stories and images. They follow and trust lesser known stars like:

  • Youtube influencers
  • Instagram personalities
  • Talent on lip-syncing app

These up and coming stars are more down to earth, compared to mainstream celebrities. Companies should keep this in mind as they seek out brand ambassadors and social media influencers. The right ones will help you stand out in the right way with Gen Z.

Are you looking to market a product or service to Gen Z? Contact us to see how we can help. We lead research and do extensive consulting on Gen Z as consumers, trendsetters, and market-changers.

Check out our new Gen Z Study and follow us on Twitter at @JasonDorsey or @WhatTheGen for our latest research and discoveries

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