How to Prepare Your Social Media Strategies for the Consumers of Tomorrow

Sep 05, 2019


BEST PRACTICES SERIES

Article ImageIt’s estimated Gen Z, a generation that has grown up in the world of Facebook, will account for 40% of all consumers by 2020. As the purchasing power of millions of Gen Z consumers continues to grow, it’s time for brands to re-evaluate their social media strategies. 

The face of social media is changing, carrying younger generations’ attention and dollars with it. With this transition, the digital marketing tactics used with millennials will not produce optimal results with Gen Z. 

Continue reading to learn about the type of social content the post-millennial generation wants your brand to post.

 

1. Choose Your Platform: Go Beyond Facebook! 

If companies wish to engage with these young consumers, it will mean populating the networks Gen Z trusts for information. In fact, trust plays an important role in deciding which platforms they use.

The post-millennial generation prefers individualized experiences with content preferences available to protect privacy. For example, Snapchat photos vanish in seconds, and users can choose a personalized list of recipients.

Beyond privacy, young users congregate on platforms with interactive multimedia content. In particular, Gen Z appreciates innovative, brief videos as a way to amass new knowledge.

It’s no surprise, then, that the top three platforms Gen Z populates allow private experiences with visual media.  

  1. YouTube
  2. Snapchat
  3. Instagram

According to The Manifest, Gen Z’s social media use doesn’t span as many platforms as previous generations, but they allocate a longer, more targeted amount of time to their favorite accounts.

Similar to millennials, they check social networks multiple times per day. In particular, they access YouTube at least once per week for video content.

If your business is accustomed to implementing digital marketing tactics on text-based platforms, you may want to consider how to create compelling content for image and video-based networks. 

 

2. Know Your Audience: America’s Most Diverse Generation 

Generation Z is the most diverse generation in the United States. According to a study from the Pew Research Center, almost half of post-millennials are racial or ethnic minorities. 

Content that represents the young consumers’ identities and lifestyles will resonate more powerfully than generic messages.

For example, Sprint has successfully engaged with Gen Z by connecting to users’ identities. Sprint recruited millennials and post-millennials to head up its youth marketing efforts, and it prioritized collaboration with Latin business units to produce content that speaks to Hispanic and multicultural markets. 

 

Source: Instagram

Sprint’s content has featured influencers such as Prince Royce, a Latin celebrity, and it heavily relies on visual platforms such as Instagram and YouTube.

If you invest time to research Gen Z’s demographic, lifestyle, and pop culture, it will pay dividends when your campaign launches.

 

3. Lift Them Higher: Feed Their Desire for Positivity

Brands connect with Gen Z when they disseminate uplifting messages.

Even though Gen Z uses their social accounts daily, they are conscious that certain browsing habits could negatively affect their mental health. 

They know that consuming certain messages will lower self-esteem or increase stress, and they structure their digital habits accordingly.

Post-millennials tend to react favorably to educational, uplifting, or empowering messages. According to a study by American University, themes that speak to Gen Z include justice, diversity, and authenticity.

For example, the Pizza Pops brand championed teens expressing their true personalities on social media, rather than airbrushing images to perfection. 

The campaign caption on the YouTube video pictured below states, “We know we’re a little weird, but weird is good. And weird is everywhere. Like this cat lady, she’s super weird.”

Source: YouTube

The video here demonstrates acceptance about a particular lifestyle, which preaches individuality. 

Young audiences gravitate towards this content: integrating this sort of content helps your business better engage with younger audiences.  

 

4. Deploy Social Ads: It’s OK To Be Paid

It’s more than OK to fund social ads—paid advertisements and influencer networks are ripe grounds for product discovery, according to Gen Z. 

Over half of Gen Z social media users have purchased goods initially noticed via a paid social advertisement. They’re also accustomed to learning about brands through celebrities and endorsed opinion leaders.

When choosing an influencer, remain mindful that the Gen Z values authenticity. Choosing an opinion leader with a lifestyle that already aligns with your brand is an effective tactic for creating genuine messages.

 

Brainstorm, Strategize, then Create

Social media platforms are rich with opportunities to capture the attention of this young, creative, diverse generation. Not only do they use social accounts to connect with friends, but they also rely on social media for educational, inspirational, and entertaining content. 

Now that you know how to communicate with Gen Z, it’s time to ideate how your brand could add value to their social feed! 


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