A new generation representing almost 27.5 million people in South Africa is the new generation that brands are taking a keen interest in. Born between 1997 and 2015, who are within the age range of 7 – 25yrs this year are called Gen Z or ‘Zoomers’. This generation overlaps the born free audience, the generation born in South Africa after the fall of the apartheid in 1994.
For some brands, marketing to Gen Z can seem like a daunting task. The reality though? Figuring out how to make your marketing click with a younger crowd is easier than you think.
The internet and social media have enabled Zoomers to always have access to information in a timely manner, which gives them political awareness at a relatively young age. Constantly connected and demanding seamless digital experiences doesn’t mean they don’t value human contact. Zoomers value interaction and engagement and place significance on building relationships with others as well as brands.
Now that we understand that this audience is digitally lead, value interaction and engagement, have short attention spans, and have massive spending power. Having a pulse on what young customers want not only opens brands up to new business but also ensures they aren’t missing out on key social media trends.
One of the most common errors brands make is viewing social media platforms as simply different channels of distribution, rather than diverse societies. Great marketing is all about keeping up with your target customers and their communities. Each platform comes with its own customs and traditions, and fitting in is critical.
Zoomers use each social media channel for a different purpose, they use Twitter to get news, Instagram to exhibit their aspirational lives, Snapchat to share daily interations and Facebook for information. Social media is also their most preferred channel to engage with a brand. The average young person spends around 2.5hours on social media a day.
No generation has been empowered as Gen Z is. Technology has given them the freedom to break free from traditional media channels and have given them a choice of what they consume, when they consume it and on their preferred platform.
Marketing to younger customers might require a bit of finess, but doing so isn’t reserved only for the ‘hip’ brands on social media. By taking time to learn about Gen Z’s preferences and what makes them unique compared to other generations, brands stand to build valuable relationships that benefit all parties involved.