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As Generation Z begins to dominate consumer buying power, how should brands pivot their messaging to resonate with this digitally-native audience?

According to a recent study by Pew Research Center, Generation Z is set to become the largest consumer population by 2025, surpassing both Millennials and Baby Boomers. This digital-first generation, growing up amidst rapid technological advancements and global shifts, possesses unique consumer habits and expectations that differ significantly from previous generations.

Their unparalleled fluency with technology, combined with a discerning approach to brand authenticity and purpose, presents both challenges and opportunities for marketers. In this new landscape, it is essential for brands to deeply understand and engage with this emerging powerhouse of consumers, tailoring their messaging to genuinely resonate and spark meaningful connections.

We asked our team to share their thoughts on how brands can pivot their messaging to resonate better with Generation Z.

Bronte Howard – Account Director

“Authenticity is Key: Gen Z values authenticity and transparency. Brands should be genuine in their messaging, avoiding overly polished or deceptive content. Use real people and real stories in your marketing to establish a more genuine connection.

Social Responsibility: Gen Z is socially conscious and cares about issues like climate change, diversity, and equality. Brands should take a stand on these issues and demonstrate their commitment to positive change.

Digital-First Approach: Invest in online platforms where Gen Z spends most of their time, such as Instagram, TikTok, Snapchat, and YouTube. Create mobile-friendly and easily shareable content, including short videos and interactive experiences.

User-Generated Content: Encourage user-generated content (UGC) by involving your audience in brand campaigns. UGC can build trust and authenticity.

Short-Form and Visual Content: Gen Z has a shorter attention span, so create concise and visually appealing content that grabs their attention quickly. Utilise memes, GIFs, and other visual elements to make your content more shareable.”

Katherine Foudy – Account Executive

“We’re stepping into the era of Generation Z, a tech-obsessed, socially-conscious power group set to become the largest consumer population by 2025.

Welcome to the marketing frontier, where engagement and interactivity are king.

Brands must immerse Gen Z in interactive experiences that speak their language. Think augmented reality, virtual reality, gamified elements or user-generated content campaigns – think outside the digital box.

Gen Z expects a VIP experience, so lean into data and analytics to craft personalised messages that hit the bullseye. Honesty is your golden ticket, so open the curtains on your business practices, supply chains, and pricing – Gen Z craves transparency.

One last thing, make sure everything you do is optimised for mobile because in the world of Gen Z, smartphones rule.”

Emilia Chambers – Head of Strategy

“To resonate with Gen Z audiences, brands should consider creating engaging and shareable content that speaks to them. As Gen Z grew up with the internet being a key part of their lives and social media, being an important part of that, this generation values content that connects with them across the platforms that they use the most.

Brands should consider creating content that resonates with their values and interests and is transparent and authentic in the messaging.

Communication with Gen Z should also be two-way where possible.

This generation wants to align themselves with brands they trust and that match with their lifestyle and values and to achieve this, brands need to create opportunities for Gen Z to interact and be involved with the brand.

By focusing on active engagement, over passive, brands can also gain invaluable insight into how Gen Z’s think and act, and what they want from the brands that they align with.”

Erfan Azyze – SEM Specialist

“Adapt to Unique Needs: Recognize Gen Z’s distinct preferences influenced by cost of living and changing norms. Brands should recognize that their needs and wants may differ from those of previous generations. For instance, due to economic shifts, Gen Z might prioritize affordability, sustainability, and experiences over traditional markers of success like homeownership or luxury goods.

Prioritize Authenticity: Use relatable, less corporate content for genuine connections.This trend is evident on platforms like TikTok, where brands are experimenting with less formal messaging, even letting their “admin” go off-script.

Build Trust: Direct advertising efforts may not be as effective with Gen Z, who tend to be more conscious of marketing tactics. Instead of a hard sell, brands should focus on building trust and aligning with Gen Z values. This means showcasing the brand’s commitment to social responsibility, inclusivity, and environmental sustainability. When a brand’s values align with those of Gen Z, it creates a sense of purpose that goes beyond the product itself.”

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