Millennials are defined as the generation group born between the 1970’s and early 1990’s. What is the next generation, you may ask? Generation Z — and yes, we are running out of letters.
Generation Z is defined as the generation born from 1995 until the present, and they exemplify a core group of traits important to marketers. This group tends to be:
- Exposed to more technology
- Equipped with more resources
- Experiencing an even mixture of hardship and ease
- More self-driven than any other generation before them
Getting their attention is also more difficult because of how well educated and aware they are of their surroundings. As we start to look at this generation as being a bigger part of society, there are a few trends marketers must recognize to better understand Generation Z.
More online learning
Generation Z uses the Internet to further their learning. Many of them use online databases to complete homework assignments and use their tablets as textbooks. Classmates also use online telecommunication systems (Skype, Google Hangouts, etc.) to work on group projects and assignments. Many teachers of this generation also invite guest speakers through online video conferencing instead of inviting them into their classrooms.
Millennials were introduced to the smartphone, tablet and laptop era in their early adult lives. Generation Z is introduced to this type of technology once they are brought into this world. One of their traits includes being more visual and process learners — they learn by “trying and seeing” rather than being told how things are done.
Social media usage
Social media is the biggest influence for Generation Z, especially those platforms that are visually appealing. Facebook and Twitter have more millennial followers than Generation Z followers because the platforms are more text based. Generation Z is more attracted to visually appealing social media sites such as Instagram, Vine or Snapchat.
How is this affecting the advertising and marketing world? Advertising firms need to adjust to be more visually tactful and create more exclusivity to their product/service. Many retail companies targeting teens and early college students have been utilizing apps such as Snapchat to advertise exclusive content and products. Also, many advertisers have been focused on being more mobile-friendly with their social media content.
Here at Archer, we are preparing ourselves to follow these types of trends as Generation Z begins to gain buying power and influence the marketplace. We are continuously experimenting with visually-based social media sites, mobile-friendly designs, and preparing ourselves for the inevitable Generation Z Apocalypse . . .