- How Gen Z uses the internet is different from all other generations
- Brands must be responsive to what Gen Z cares about
- Gen Z will share their personal data, but they want something for it in return
Kathryn Lundstrom from Adweek recently spoke with CGK President and lead generational researcher Jason to discuss the state of Gen Z. Jason shared CGK’s latest Gen Z research findings, in partnership with WP Engine, specific to Gen Z’s relationship with technology, society, and how they behave as consumers.
Jason, along with CGK’s CEO Denise Villa, Ph.D., cover these subjects and much more in their upcoming book, Zconomy, How Gen Z Will Change the Future of Business—and What to Do About It. It is essential reading for all leaders looking to make a true connection with the newest generation entering the workforce and that are becoming more reliable consumers.
Gen Z and technology: Marketers who approach Gen Z differently from Millennials will be more successful
While previous generations have been much more guarded with their personal information online, that is not the case with Gen Z. Further, marketers must treat this new generation as its own separate and distinct set of consumers. As our research has shown already, this generation is tech-dependent, and it shows. Marketing strategies that treat Gen Z as Millennials 2.0 will fall short. You can read all about this in WP Engine’s latest study report, Generation Influence: Reaching Gen Z in the New Digital Paradigm.
As Jason shared with Adweek, “That kind of marketing exposes a fundamental misunderstanding about the way that Gen Z, which now represents more than 40% of global consumers, interacts with the world.”
As WP Engine’s research in collaboration with CGK shows, and we shared with Adweek, “56% of Gen Z surveyed said they have friends online that they’ve never met in real life, and 58% said they’re uncomfortable going more than four hours without the internet.” That is really impressive and unheard of before Gen Z.
Brands that care will have Gen Z consumers that care about them
With information at our fingertips now, and Gen Z having been brought up in a digital world, they are incredibly aware of the world around them. They care about issues and believe that engaging with a movement online is just as good as any other form of agency.
And it doesn’t stop with their activity alone. As the article points out, “[Gen Z] want brands to take a stance on the things they care about, too. The same percentage of respondents said they’re more likely to buy from a brand that contributes to social causes.”
Gen Z is more relaxed when it comes to sharing data if it provides an experience customized to them
Many of us who use the internet are wary about what website and companies do with the information collected when we visit a web page. Gen Z, on the other hand, simply wants to get something in return. And in fact, they expect it!
As mentioned in the article, “72% of Gen Z surveyed said they want a website to know what they’re looking for before they get there, and 66% said they expect websites to talk to each other.”
WP Engine’s CMO, Mary Ellen Dugan pointed out that they want a ‘predictive experience’ even when privacy regulations may change how the process works.
How to market effectively to Gen Z now
In this extraordinary time, there are many challenges in connecting with our target audiences. In spite of this, marketers, and leaders from across industries must ensure that their organizations can engage Gen Z now and emerge from this time with strength. This has never been more important for employers and marketers as well as for Gen Z’s future.
At CGK, we are constantly researching how Gen Z and all generations are thinking about spending, work, brands, family, the economy, and much more throughout the pandemic. Our team is providing these insights to you with strategic advisory sessions, webinars, and virtual keynote presentations to help leaders at all levels be accurately informed with missing data and solutions to drive results at this incredibly important time.
Contact our friendly team here to learn how our custom research and generational strategies can help your team and organization lead and solve challenges through this time of uncertainty. We are all in this together.