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Gen Z Purchasing Decisions: What Marketers are Missing
The research is in on the emerging group your brand needs to understand, Generation Z. Those born in the late 1990s and early 2000s often don’t know a life without technology and the real-time connection it creates. This can create a gap between brands’ sales strategies and their current or future audience, Gen Z.
New research from SnapChat reveals key insights to what drives Gen Z’s brand loyalty and purchasing decisions. Luckily, marketers and advertisers are not completely off track.
However, your brand may be missing important tactics that will determine longevity when Gen Z fully enters the market. Here’s what to know about the youngest generation’s marketing preferences.
More than 25% of Gen Z members said they first learned of a new brand from a friend or family member’s recommendation, while only 9% said they heard of a new brand through a “sponsored influencer” post. That’s right. Word of mouth is here to stay! On the other hand, some marketing and public relations professionals have predicted influencer marketing to slow down as audiences are getting tired of sponsored posts and experiencing a growing increase of distrust.
It’s important to remember that how Gen Z members learn about new brands varies by category. For example, friend and family recommendations are valued for retail, fashion, entertainment and technology brands.
When it comes to food products, the best way for Gen Z to learn is seeing an item in the store. For beauty products and consumer goods, 25% agree an online ad is the preferred way to discover new brands.
To learn more about a product, 35% visit the company’s website. Fewer mentioned other methods like talking to family and friends or reading reviews.
So…what are the takeaways from Gen Z’s preferences and behavior findings?
1. Company websites must be mobile-friendly.
In 2018, 58% of website visits were from a mobile device, according to SimilarWeb. This number is expected to rise drastically over the next few years. If your brand wants to stay in the game, we suggest optimizing mobile content for your website to give you an advantage over those without a streamlined presence.
2. What is there to gain?
Keeping the varying favorite information sources for different products in mind, Gen Z members’ brand loyalty and purchasing decisions go beyond a website. A lot of their decision relies on what they are getting from the information source. In fact, they are looking for brands to entertain (42%), advise (39%), educate (40%) and provide an experience (37%) for them.
3. Gen Z members can become valuable brand advocates.
Most surprisingly, Gen Z is more likely to share positive, rather than negative, brand experiences. This can be a shock to people as young customers are commonly criticized for complaining or calling out brands on social media. Almost 50% said they’ve shared positive experiences and 40% have recently shared a good customer service experience with their friends or family.
Gen Z members can become valuable brand advocates, but they expect businesses to be accountable. How so? Many respondents said they would stop using or supporting a brand if they feel the company uses unethical business practices or negatively impacts the environment. Companies that value ethical culture and philanthropy often attract younger customers, but it must be genuine.
Understanding what drives Gen Z purchasing and brand loyalty can lead your brand in the right direction through effective messaging, delivery and tactics. Connect with our team today to learn more about reaching your prospective audience.