- Dante DiCicco, Senior Manager, International Expansion at Snap Inc writes how Gen Z is driving new behaviors, they have unique values, and they’re defining what the future will look like.
- He further shares a few ways in which brands can resonate and stay relevant with this generation.
Gen Z, a diverse group of individuals, make authentic and creative expression their top priority which is reflected in their lifestyle choices and how they stay connected. In a recent study of this group of Gen Z - which we call the Snapchat Generation, we found that they represent a new kind of consumer, one who is willing to immerse themselves in stories and experiences, using the latest tech and mobile convenience to their advantage.
This group is more likely to use AR and other creative tools and three times more likely to virtually try on products than one year ago. This generation is also committed to making a positive difference and are more likely to volunteer, give back through charity and roll up their sleeves to drive social change.
We know that Gen Z is critically important to the future of our society and frankly for businesses. They’re driving new behaviors, they have unique values, and they’re defining what the future will look like. When you consider what happens in a person’s life between the ages of 13 and 34– you understand why large brand advertisers find deep, long-term value in our audience. In this age range, they move out of the house for the first time, they get their first apartment, they get their first credit card, they get their first car, they take their first trip on their own, and they start to buy the day-to-day products that they will be loyal to for the rest of their lives.
In order to build a sustainable relationship with Gen Z we recommend advertisers consider the following key trends:
Gen Z aspires to shape a better world and they are interested in the story behind the products and what the brands stand for. In some cases, they want them to be allies for the causes they support. But in order to engage on this level brands need to show up authentically and connect meaningfully. So it's not just about telling this group about a brand’s values, but instead giving them the tools to express it themselves in their own way, should they choose to.
In India for example, brands like
Creating immersive mobile experiences
Most consumers have AR-capable smartphones which allows brands the creative opportunity to overlay virtual content on the physical world and have the two interact in real-time. The Snapchat Generation is completely comfortable using
From seeing how a piece of furniture fits in your house to trying on shoe styles before purchase, over the past couple of years’ brands including Gucci, WHO, Ralph Lauren,
As these brands demonstrate, AR is about enhancing what already exists, rather than creating a completely new reality and for brands this means that physical presence is no longer a barrier to an engaging customer experience.
Value relationships and shared experiences
As a result of the pandemic, Gen Z has a renewed appreciation for friends and family, and they will carry this deep need for connection through as a defining characteristic. When asked, what are the three things that they won’t go a day without? The Snapchat Generation cited talking to their parents and family, staying in touch with their friends and being active on social communication and camera apps. The sense of belonging and relationships are extremely important to this generation and if brands can play a contributing role in this space there is a huge opportunity to create engaging experiences that lend themselves to sharing.
Gen Z is a native digital generation. They actively seek meaningful connections and shared experiences both online and offline. The insights shared here will help brands resonate and stay relevant with this generation.