Gen Z has the fastest growing purchasing power of any generation – but it’s still one of the most misunderstood and challenging age groups to market to.
While earlier generations can generally be persuaded to buy products by large companies through brand loyalty, fear of missing out, or high-budget ads, Gen-Z’s relatively modest spending habits and cravings for authenticity have turned some traditional marketing tactics on their heads.
Gen Z’s budget consciousness became even more apparent in 2020 and the global pandemic. When the physical stores closed, the brands struggled to keep up with the demand for online sales, and as members of the young adult workforce became concerned about job security, the brands had to take even more steps to reach the age group .
Not only did marketing content need to demonstrate that products were essential, worth buying, or readily available to Gen Z audiences, but brands also needed to demonstrate that they were related to them, trusted, and shared values.
Since creating engaging content for Gen Z wasn’t an easy task in 2020, Fanbytes – an influencer talent agency – started hosting Gen Z TikTok influencers in a house in the UK where they lived full-time, creating content and throughout 2020 Lock. This house was called “Bytehouse”.
What the heck is Bytehouse?
Right now, Bytehouse – which the BBC, The Guardian and other news outlets refer to as the “TikTok House” – is home to influencers like KT Franklin, Lily-Rose, Sebbyjon, Monty Keates and the duo Em and Loz. According to Fanbytes content manager Shelly Chadha, the group of influencers known as “Bytesquad” has more than 10 million TikTok followers.
“Bytehouse was developed in response to Generation Z consumer behavior that has shifted from linear television to social media,” said Chadha.
By co-hosting Gen Z developers, Chadha says, “We made sure that the content was not only accessible and fun for young people, but also reflected their beliefs and behaviors. It was extremely important to us that … [the influencers] are almost mirror images and can help answer questions about identity, sexuality, and race. “
While the Bytesquad produced many unbranded TikTok videos, they also helped market products to Gen Z. For example, here’s a Bytesquad demo of skin care brand Starface products:
Shortly after the success of Bytehouse, a US version called “Hype House” began hosting YouTubers and TikTok influencers in Los Angeles. This house has also been featured in publications such as the New York Times and Cosmopolitan.
While influencer houses like this seem more entertaining than branding, these experiments have allowed content managers and agencies like Fanbytes to engage with Gen Z audiences.
While influencers may not be relevant to your marketing efforts right now, there is still a lot you can learn from the content they create for the unique Gen Z demographics.
Fortunately, if you’re a marketer who can’t attract top Gen Z talent at content creation for you, there are still many ways your team can target and reach that audience.
Chadha provided us with a handful of great tips for creating engaging content for the age group to help marketers engage the Gen Z audience.
How to Create Marketing Content for Gen Z.
1. Remember: Gen Z and Millennials are not the same.
“One of the key mistakes a lot of brands make is putting Gen Z and Millennials in one category and creating content that they believe will include them at the same time,” explains Chadha.
For example, “Despite both [millennials and Gen Z] In the search for authenticity in the content they consume, Gen Z sets new standards and has unique consumer behavior, ”says Chadha.
Besides, because Gen Z was raised around revolutionary technologyAs with smartphones and iPads, “the content they consume is always in line with the latest trends, while millennials may not be that picky,” explains Chadha. “It is mandatory for brands to be up to date with the latest innovations in the content they create if they are to win the hearts of Gen Z.”
Last since Gen Z grew up in times of recessionWhile millennials grew up in an economic boom, Gen Z tends to “not trust brands as quickly as millennials,” added Chadha.
Chadha isn’t the only marketer to notice the key differences mentioned above. In a research-oriented article HubSpot looked at similar generational differences in terms of spending, content consumption, and brand trust level.
Ultimately, brands must use authentic, trustworthy, or entertaining content that demonstrates the value of a product in order to reach Gen Z. With the tips below, we’ll go into more detail on what this looks like.
2. Choose the right platform.
One thing is certain about Gen Z. They love to experiment with the latest social networking and video creation apps.
However, when marketing to young adults it can be difficult to determine which apps are just trending, which ones have marketing potential, and which ones are not worth investing time in.
To ensure brands and influencers are directed to focus on the right platforms, Fanbytes does thorough research and testing of viral apps before recommending them to customers.
“For every new app that comes to our attention, we create a strategy that members of our team research [the app’s] Deals. Only after we’ve thoroughly researched what new platforms are offering will we tell which platforms are worth investing in and which brands aren’t, “explains Chadha.
Two platforms that Chadha’s team recently investigated are Triller – a music video creation platform and Instagram Reels – a TikTok-like feature in the Instagram app.
Aside from spending time on Trill and Instagram roles to learn how they work and which influencers use them, “we’re researching the types of campaigns that can be run on these platforms and how other brands use the platform used, ”explains Chadha.
“We also activate test campaigns with real brands ourselves to put our findings into practice and see if the platform can really deliver,” adds Chadha.
Apps Fanbytes is watching
While TikTok saw amazing growth in its launch year, it was used again during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The world has seen a tremendous surge in the rate at which we consume short-form content. In early 2020, Tiktok became the most downloaded app in one quarter,” says Chadha.
“TikTok offered so many people a form of escapism that they had to adjust to what was happening in the world while they were stuck inside,” notes Chadha, everything in between. ”
“TikTok has continued to expand and other apps have expanded or diversified their offerings to follow suit,” added Chadha.
But what sets TikTok apart from its competitors? Chadha explains:
“Instead of the sophisticated aesthetics that platforms like Instagram maintain, TikTok values personality, originality, innovation and fun. As a result, TikTok offers all types of brands the ability to reach users in ways they cannot reach elsewhere.”
Also, because TikTok’s algorithms The goal is to connect viewers with videos that they like Based on viewer data and video-specific engagement, “great content can go viral for brands and developers regardless of the number of followers,” says Chadha. “If a brand can understand that Platform algorithm, its users’ behavior and trends, even if they only have 200 followers, 75% of them are already there. “
According to Chadha, if you want to market your brand on TikTok, defining your “niche” and creating attention grabbing content is important.
Knowing that you want to market to Gen Z is a great start to finding your TikTok niche. However, it is important to keep in mind that the app has many subsets of young adults with different interests. While you’re determining what your brand niche is, Chadha suggests asking yourself the following questions:
- “Which population group would you like to get traffic, sales or clicks from?
- What content should you create to appeal to these users?
- Which influencers can you use to spread the content?
“Writing these things down is a great first step on your TikTok marketing journey, and it can make all the difference,” says Chadha.
While TikTok can be a helpful tool for brands trying to hit Gen Z, you should still consider checking out other similar apps. Although TikToks has seen historic app growth, it is still vulnerable to bans, regulations, and censorship in certain countries that could affect marketers.
If regulations affect your TikTok strategy, you can learn about other apps, such as those mentioned below, if necessary to smoothly steer your content strategy elsewhere if necessary.
“Instagram’s new Reels feature gives brands a more diverse and diverse range of content on the platform, and we’ve seen some brands benefit,” says Chadha.
For example, this Louis Vuitton role creates seamless transitional content. “
While Instagram Reels may have a promising outlook due to the success of other Instagram features, Fanhates “still” wonders whether this alternative “will ever reach the potential of TikTok,” according to Chadha.
While reels may not be as viral as TikTok, marketers should still check this out – especially if they have already gained an Instagram audience for Gen Z. While TikTok has taken over app stores, you can still reach Instagram audiences of more than 2 billion users with Instagram Reels.
Right now, Triller – a music video creation app – may be more relevant for companies in the music industry. However, it might be a good app to stay on the radar for Gen Z research, especially if TikTok continues to see concerns about the ban around the world. To show you some of the similarities, here is a video that shows how to make a trill video:
“From our research, we saw that campaigns on Triller started because of his well-deserved reputation in the music industry. With investors like Snoop Dogg and Lil Wayne, it’s no wonder musicians jumped on the app to create music videos with Trillers Build -in AI video editing software. “
While Triller has seen steady usage and campaign growth, Chadha notes that it’s still more specific to brands and creators in the music industry, while TikTok is still better suited to brands with all kinds of niches.
“We believe Triller will continue to grow after being downloaded 250 million times and ranked number one on the App Store in 50 different markets,” says Chadha. “We don’t see it as a direct competition to TikTok, however, as Triller will continue to cement itself in the music marketing world, while TikTok has the potential to grow in all other areas.”
Catering your content on every platform.
Once you’ve landed on a platform, there are a few tips that you should follow to see what types of content stand out and what your options are there.
For example, when ByteHouse launches branded content on TikTok, it’s short, fun, and to the point.
The group’s YouTube page has longer videos that need more time to get detailed information about a brand. Here is an example where the group went to a restaurant called FUWA FUWA:
While ByteSquad on TikTok offers quick information and attention grabbing storylines, they use YouTube to have a more in-depth discussion about a brand.
3. Prioritize video and audio content.
“It’s always a good idea to take a video approach to the content you create. Gen Z rejects traditional mobile first advertising and spends an average of 3.5 hours of Internet video per day,” said Chadha.
Chadha’s words are based on a handful of research studies. In one of the latest from YouTube, The interviewed Generation Z respondents stated that they could not “live” without YouTube content. The study also found that Many Gen Z members rely on video research when deciding whether to make a purchase.
At Bytehouse, the influencers there mainly focused on creating short videos, mostly for Gen Z platforms like TikTok. At this moment, BytesquadThe official TikTok account contains hundreds of original Gen Z videos, many of which have more than 100,000 views. The squad also creates videos for platforms like Youtube and Instagram.
Aside from video, says Chadha, brands may want to consider audio marketing as well. Examples of this could be Creation of podcast content and advertising on music streaming services popular with Gen Z.
“We also expect audio marketing to be big in 2021. Audio in marketing enables personalized content and intimacy that Gen Z loves, “says Chadha.” In a Report from PandoraAverage daily audio streaming hours increased by 32%. Digital audio now takes more listening time than traditional AM / FM radio and accounts for 53% of total daily audio consumption. “
4. Engage your audience quickly.
“”[Gen Z marketing] Content should not only be informative, it should also be quick, “advises Chadha.” Keep them snappy and to the point. “
Regardless of what type of content you’re using, it’s important to remember that Gen Z only has an eight-second attention span. And that length of time could be even shorter if you’re browsing fast-paced social platforms with endless content.
To get Gen Z’s attention, Chadha advises that marketing content “needs to be very concise and have a great hook”.
Here is an example of a TikTok that the ByteSquad created with a great hook. In the video, one of the members lures the secret by going up to her roommate and saying, “Look what I have.” Since the video was recorded from her point of view, you cannot see what kind of product she is holding, but the jealous reactions of her roommates. As the video progresses, it becomes clear that everyone is jealous of the McDonalds influencer’s grocery bag.
5. Embrace advertising.
Once you’ve reached out to your audience, you’ll want to entertain them while distinguishing your content from boring product placements.
According to Chadha, one of the biggest challenges Gen Z marketers face is creating fun content that still makes a product or brand interesting.
“If the campaign is intrusive with branding logos all over the place, people will know it is being promoted and the content will not appear organic,” explains Chadha.
Ultimately, Chadha says the “only way” marketers can thrive on TikTok or other well-known Gen Z platforms is by naturally aligning attention-grabbing content with branding information.
“This means adopting our advertainment approach: entertainment first, product second,” advises Chadha. “By learning [a Gen Z platform] If you take advantage of the tools, features, and trends, you can win users’ hearts successfully. “
One example of how Fanbytes helped brands reach Gen Z is a recent campaign Idahoan Foods
When food levels increased during the lockdowns, Idahoan Foods wanted Raise Gen-Z’s awareness of their mashed potatoes products.
Instead of running traditional ads, Fanbytes created a custom TikTok sound, “leveraged influencers and created a dance challenge to encourage users to connect with the brand,” explains Chadha.
The following video shows an example of an Idahoan Foods promotional video posted on TikTok. In the short clip, an influencer named Nico Bisesi compares the taste of Idahoan’s instant potatoes with that of a butter knife.
While the video clearly shows product placement by Idahoan Foods, viewers may be more intrigued by the weirdness of the story. For example, instead of getting bored of watching a video ad, TikTok viewers might ask themselves, “Why did he eat that knife?” or “What will happen next?”
Chadha notes that Idahoan Foods’ overall TikTok strategy has resulted in more than 14 million TikTok video views, 211 user-generated content, and 3,700 additional Idahoan Foods followers.
In determining why the tactic worked so well, Chandra believes the brand is focusing more on the level of content entertainment and less on intrusive product placement.
“We haven’t plastered [Idahoan Foods] everywhere but instead found a way to connect [Gen Z] User with the product through a fun concept, “says Chadha.
6. Embrace retargeting.
“Gen Z’s fast attention spans also mean they are most likely to quickly scroll past ads,” added Chadha.
Because Gen Z speeds up previous ads, brands that use advertising will likely need to show their promotions on Gen Z more than once.
“”[Gen Z is] Bombarded with ads hundreds of times a day so an ad won’t win them over, ”explains Chadha. “Using retargeting helps you stay on top of things and make users feel like they know you.”
7. Use influencer marketing (and it doesn’t have to be TikTok!).
While you don’t need influencers to take advantage of all of the tips on this list, they can still be of great use if you have access to them.
“A great opportunity to make a lasting and meaningful impression on Gen Z is through influencer marketing. Gen Z is a group that cares more about people than brands and autonomy than big companies,” explains Chadha. “So building relationships with influencers who have built strong relationships with your target market is a great way to go.”
According to Chadha, the agency has achieved “amazing results” for its brand customers by leveraging influencer marketing at Fanbytes.
“Let’s take it ACCA“adds Chadha.” You reached out to us to change the perception of accounting from “boring, boring and exclusive” to “exciting, impactful and relevant” under Gen Z. “
“We picked some of our top influencers who are trusted voices in the TikTok community to go to an accounting firm for a day and movie Content “day in life” for their fans.
In the video below entitled “Working hours vs lunch break 😂 Relatable? “, Sherice Banton, a TikTok inventor with more than 1.7 million followers, pretends to work with actual accountants. After seeing a few clips of her work in a seemingly normal office, a clip symbolizing lunchtime shows her dancing next to the accountants.
Not only did the video give viewers a glimpse into the world of accounting, it also made the subject of working in an office fun, entertaining, and understandable for anyone who saw it. Chadha notes that this campaign generated more than 6.2 million video views, 182,000 TikTok “hearts” and over a thousand comments.
Some of the best places to use influencer marketing could be short-form video platforms like Instagram Reels or TikTok. This type of strategy can be especially helpful if you want to take advantage of a viral video platform but haven’t mastered the hottest content types, trends, or audiences yet. Since influencers have built a following on a particular platform, they likely know what content works and how information about your brand or product is implemented in these videos.
While Fanbytes works with TikTok influencers on a macro level, smaller brands don’t need to toss this strategy aside if they can’t access a big name or if they don’t know if TikTok is right for them. While key influencers might be more difficult to access, there are many micro-level creators via social platforms with large follower bases and strong expertise in many niches.
For example, if you sell fitness products, you might consider working with a developer who regularly publishes their workouts, talks about the products they use, and has thousands of dedicated followers or regular comments on their content. If you are selling clothes, you can also look for developers who are known for regularly reporting on fashion trends.
8. Let Gen Z create content for you.
“Marketers targeting Gen Z also have the ability to optimize their campaigns through inspiration [audiences] to create content for their brand, “explains Chadha.” Gen Z loves to be creative and really experience a brand through content creation. If the concept [of your campaign] is on trend, you can potentially build an army of fans creating content for you without lifting a finger. “
“Take the #davidstesla Trend, for example. It started with a collaboration between G FUEL, an energy drink brand, and David Dobrik, a popular creator on Youtube and TikTok. The collaboration was started as a competition where David gives away a Tesla to the user who creates the best video and follows the G Fuel page. “
Since the start of this campaign TikTok page from G FUEL has grown to more than 863,000 followers and has received more than 12 million likes.
Aside from the high-priced award, Chadha explains that the campaign went viral “because it puts the audience in control by giving them the ability to vote on the best videos on the number of views, approvals and commitment to a video submission. ”
“Second, our concept of ‘advertainment’ is seamlessly merged by barely mentioning the product. Instead, the product is subtly integrated, but still has to follow the side to be considered,” added Chadha.
Even if you don’t have access to a top influencer or a free Tesla – User generated content can still be beneficial to your brand.
For example, you could Host a smaller version of a giveaway The audience is encouraged to create content in order to win one of your products. You can also offer to share the best user-created videos on your website or social media channels to encourage people to create videos to increase awareness online.
9. Study and accept Gen Z trends.
“A generation that grew up with rapid technological developments and social media. [Gen Z is] extremely digitally savvy and used to adapting to new technologies. Because of this, trends on platforms like TikTok are moving extremely quickly and the content that’s popular one minute on social media platforms may be out the window in the next, “says Chadha.
“Brands need to be on all social media … and keep up to date with the latest and greatest trends so they’re always part of the conversation,” explains Chadha.
“Our number one piece of advice would be to be active on the platform you want to dominate. This means not just as a marketer, but also as an interested user,” advises Chadha.
“You may hear about TikTok viral trends, but you will never know the power [a platform] and the many types of content and trends that pop up every week unless you spend at least 15 minutes a day there, “explains Chadha.
As you browse content on the platform you are most interested in, “you learn how to master the platform and develop a strong strategy so you don’t leave anything to chance,” said Chadha.
10. Don’t be afraid to share your values.
“Unlike millennials who care more about what a brand can do for them, Gen Z is looking for authentic messages and what a brand stands for,” explains Chadha. Growing up with people like Greta ThunbergGen Z is a generation that stands up for what they believe in and they expect the brands they invest in to do the same. “
“The content that Gen Z is interested in should speak to what they believe in and message them like a friend would, not a pushy company,” added Chadha. “Leave high-profile advertising behind and explore the real and raw side of your brand. Think about entertainment first, then product.”
Chadha states that branded content “shouldn’t be limited to advertising or product placement. … By creating content that is insightful.” [brand] Attitude to sociopolitical issues and the story behind the brand: “Companies could gain more trust, loyalty and potential conversions from Gen Z.
Should you be targeting Gen Z?
Now that you know how much effort to put into targeting Gen Z, you may be wondering, “Should I target this generation?”
If you’re marketing for a B2C brand or a B2B brand with products that are suitable for all ages in the workforce, you’ll either want to start planning or focus on a Gen Z strategy. While they may not yet have full purchasing power, many of them will have reached adulthood, got jobs, and are starting to make their own purchasing decisions.
As this generation approaches one of your marketing goals, it is important to do as much research on it as possible. You can start by reading our content on how Gen Z is different from other generations, spending money, and other important Gen Z data.