Millennials get most of the attention, not Gen Z. They have for a while now, and that isn’t going away—but shouldn’t we focus more on the generation that will account for 40% of consumers by 2020?
Even at a relatively young age (members of Gen Z are born post-1995), “Gen Z” contributes $44 billion to the economy. We market things to make money, so it would stand to reason that we should cater our content to where the money is now, and where it will be in the future. It’s an investment that pays immediate and long term dividends.
As things currently stand, the Gen Z cohort represents 25% of the population—that’s more than Baby Boomers or Millennials. How can we reach the up-and-coming influencers of the American economy, and how can we optimize our marketing content accordingly? Besides the obvious SEO reasons to provide a steady stream of relevant content, Gen Z is making it more important than ever to produce on-point and interesting blogs and videos. They’re a pretty tough crowd, content-wise. With an attention span shorter than your average goldfish—8 seconds against a goldfish’s 9—Gen Z demands to know the value of your content right off the bat.
Marketing to Gen Z: Numbers and Stats
You’re probably still reading this post because the first paragraph grabbed your attention somehow, and that “somehow” was probably the use of statistics. Statistics consistently keep people tuned in to what you have to say, both because stats are interesting and because they use numbers. We’ve seen reliable evidence stating that using numbers increases your PPC click rate, so why shouldn’t they help in other instances as well?
Get to the point
Here’s the gist: grab their attention early, and don’t let go. “Noodling” around without making your point is a thing of the past.
Microsoft reported that “early adopters and heavy social media users front load their attention and have more intermittent bursts of high attention.”
This doesn’t mean that Generation Z (a generation loaded with more early adopters and heavy social media users than ever before) can’t pay attention. It means that they decide right away whether they want your content or not, and then they concentrate their mental power on absorbing the main points in a short amount of time.
If you’re marketing to Gen Z, a ten-page whitepaper isn’t viable. Sorry.
Make it visual
This can either mean a visually interesting post full of infographics or interactive content, or it can mean a post that can be easily followed with the eyes. Do you use bulleted lists, subheadings, or other means of communicating big ideas at a quick glance? Remember, you only have a few seconds to show your readers that your content is worth their time, so let the outline speak for itself. Here’s a HubSpot statistic for you: “online video now accounts for 50% of all mobile traffic”. We don’t have time to open the video can-o’-worms, but online traffic is increasingly headed in that direction.
Gen Z Has Different Values
Gen Z isn’t like you, and its members aren’t like any previous generation. They’ve grown up immersed in technology and communications, and they can see right through your branding. They grew up with social media platforms that you had to study in college to understand. They are also more interested in social causes, and they probably have different social viewpoints than you do. How will you adapt?