Why Emojis, Hashtags, and Mobile Apps Are Key in How to Target Generation Z
Generation Z, or “iGeneration,” is our future. They are the first generation to grow up with smartphones, apps, and new technology that wasn’t even a thought for Millennials or other previous generations growing up. Your business already knows how to target Millennials, but what many companies don’t know, is that their branding must be continually monitored to keep up with Generation Z and beyond.
Branding is working well for the Millennials and their parents right now, but what happens to branding when Gen Z takes over social media? Generation Z has already jumped on the social media train, as young as most of them are. 14-year-olds are Snapchatting their snow days, sharing memes on Facebook, and attempting to hashtag correctly on Instagram. Before you know it, they’ll be interested in the ads that pop up between Candy Crush levels and not long after that they’ll be searching for relevant companies for their personal needs.
So, how do we target Generation Z and brand to the future generations? First, you need to re-evaluate your business. Branding is essentially the personality of your business, so make sure it still presents what you wanted it to present since day one. After you’ve established the current personality, find ways to appeal to a younger crowd, or research what they pay attention to. Although Gen Z seems to spend most of their time on social media or living life as a Sim on the PlayStation 4, they still appreciate human connection.
How can we mix both human connection with social media branding?
- Create playful ads.
An ad that relates to their generation, or one that looks appealing, is important. Do you own a bakery? Post pictures of your new emoji cookies with a fun caption. Do you manage a paint store? Snapchat your paint pouring into a tray or being applied to a wall. Don’t forget to add a fun filter and a creative caption.
- Improve your mobile website.
Having a mobile website that is easy to use and engaging is extremely important to Generation Z. Most of this generation searches the web on their smartphones as opposed to a laptop or a desktop. (What’s a desktop you ask? A computer that has a monitor and sits in one part of your house.) If your company has a well-designed, easy to use mobile site, it is more likely that you’ll receive more business from the younger generations.
- Make online purchases easy and smooth.
Who shops in actual stores these days? If most Millennials are getting their holiday shopping done on Amazon.com and other online stores, where do you think Generation Z is going to shop? Make sure the checkout process is a simple and hassle-free experience. A few clicks here and there, and an option to pay with PayPal or Apple Pay/ Samsung Pay is a must.
Adapting to the times should be your business’ priority. Do the research, talk to some Gen Z kids, pay attention to what they like to see online, and pay attention to the platforms they are using the most. Just like technology and most aspects of life, branding changes with the times.