• Hayley Gibson

Are you using the right social media channels to effectively target Generation Z?

Similar to millennials, Generation Z are fixated with technology, growing up in a fully digital era, ever-connected to their peers through social media. It makes sense for brands wanting to engage with Gen Z consumers to build their online presence, utilising social sites used most often by this generation.

Bridging the ‘attention span’ gap

Known for their increasingly low concentration, Gen Z’s avoid advertising by instinctively reverting their attention to a different device. Alternating between five devices (smart phone, TV, laptop, tablet and desktop) traditional forms of advertising will make no impact on this group of users who do not have time to sit through a 15 second YouTube ad. Rather than focusing on one-way messages, brands should aim to collaborate with this generation through their preferred social media channels. One of the main reasons they are attracted to these platforms is to connect with their friends and the wider online community – your brand should become an integrated part of that community.

Appealing to identity seekers

Generation Z see social media as a tool that helps shape their individual identities and express themselves. They feel pressured to not only fit in but to also distinguish themselves in a professional manner. Brands should strive to inspire and influence this audience, providing them the necessary tools to manage their personal and professional identities.

Social Media usage

Compared to millennials, Generation Z prefer to use social media as a more private broadcasting tool, consciously choosing the stories they want to share with specific people on a particular channel.

Facebook is less favoured with Gen Z than previous generations, with a reported 25% of 13-17 year olds deactivating their Facebook accounts in 2015. Originally the key platform for engaging with users, Generation Z consider Facebook as more of an information hub.

Snapchat is an essential app for the typical Gen Zer, with more than half of users saying they would feel cut off from friends without the platform. As well as sharing images with friends, Gen Z show high levels of interest in the featured content, ranging from real-life stories, behind the scenes and how-to videos. Brands should utilise Snapchat for storytelling, delivering interesting and engaging content and connecting with Gen Z in a meaningful way.

With a staggering 88% of Generation Z using Instagram on a regular basis, brands have huge potential to connect with this influential audience on this popular platform. Similar to Snapchat, drive brand awareness by optimising Instagram stories. Also consider partnering with an influencer popular within the Gen Z age-group – not only will they endorse your brand but teens will associate your product/service with their needs.

Embrace the Gen Z mindset

As an independent age-group striving to find their own identities in a digital world, it is crucial for brands to understand the tensions they face and fuel their ambitions and desires. Providing platform-tailored content will encourage digital conversation and help you to build strong Gen Z connections