Marketing is a tricky business. For business owners, figuring out a plan that will be effective with Millennials as well as the younger Gen Z ers makes marketing even trickier. In the current business climate, it is just as important to consider how you present your message as it is where you deliver that message.
As you think about your marketing strategy and what you want your message to say, it is very important to also consider the audience(s) you are trying to reach. You must dig a bit into the habits of your desired market. Learn what they are responding to and what motivates them.
How do you market to both Millennials and Gen Z?
Don't make the mistake of thinking you can market to both Millennials and Gen Z in the same way. Not only are they at very different places in life, but they respond to businesses and marketing in totally different ways.
Each generation covers a period of 15 years. That means from the top of the Millennial generation to the bottom of the Gen Zs, persons will have an age span of 30 years between them. Even the oldest Gen Z will be 15 years younger than the oldest Millennial. While even mid-generation Millennials are likely settled into careers and family life, the oldest Gen Z is just getting out of college.
But don't discount Gen Z as coveted buyers just yet. They already make up more than ⅓ of the total U.S. population and account for about 40% of all buyers. Even though most of them are still too young to shop, they already represent $143 billion worth of buying power. And that number is expected to expand to $600 billion as they continue to age and enter the marketplace.
While both Millennials and Gen Z are considered the younger generation with a lot in common, they are very different when it comes to marketing.
You just need to remember you can’t market the same way to a 20-year-old as you would to a person who is in their mid-thirties. They have completely different priorities at these times in life. In addition, it is not just their priorities that are different. The two generations also have different views on buying and react differently to business advertising.
Generations have a Different Relationship with Money.
Over the next several years Gen Z will be entering the job market with a much more responsible approach to spending than Millennials had at the same age. Gen Zers are entering the workforce with a desire to make money and saving for their future is a high priority. Your marketing needs to be geared towards showing how your product enhances their life.
They will spend time researching products and don’t tend to make frivolous purchases. A product must prove useful to their life and they will spend time shopping around for the best price.
Millennials, on the other hand, earn more, are highly educated and fairly optimistic about the economy. This makes them more likely to spend confidently. They make enough money to buy what they want and see certain brands as status symbols.
Gen Zers are not tempted into remaining loyal to any one brand as easily as Millennials. While Millennials appreciate loyalty programs, Gen Z will buy from brands that have the best price and whose ideals align with their own.
Both generations are more connected to technology than any other generation, we know that. But they do have different relationships with the technology they use.
Millennials were introduced to technological advances as they came to fruition. Gen Zers have never known any difference. Gen Zers are much more intertwined with their technology and they expect a lot out of it.
While both consume their content on mobile devices, Gen Z has a much shorter attention span. Millennials like to buy directly from brands they have established a relationship (think “follow”) with. They are also much more patient and will look for detailed information and content. Gen Z prefers apps and sites that give them what they need in a tight little package and at the right cost.
Social media use runs very high in both generations, but they differ in how they use it. Gen Zs are using multiple social media platforms regularly, but they use each one for different things. This means marketing to Gen Z needs to carry your message to each platform but be nuanced differently for the way they use that platform.
Millennials primarily stick with Facebook, and tend to use it to consume content as well as interact with businesses.
Your campaign strategies must fit each audience it is meant for.
If you're marketing to Gen Z you better hope they don’t notice. For the most part they are pretty turned off by traditional advertising methods. In fact, 65% of them have downloaded some type of ad-blocker. When asked about their feelings about ads, 75% of Gen Z felt like ads interrupt what they’re doing and 74% stated they find ads annoying.
This disdain for being “sold to” shows they are much more difficult to engage than millennials. You need to catch them at the right time, in the right mood, and entertain them with great music and graphics.
Millennials, on the other hand, are much more tolerant. Only 40% felt they were interrupted by ads and just 38% felt it was annoying.
For a more in-depth look into the overall beliefs of both Gen Z and Millennials about advertising take a quick flip through the results of Kantar Millward Brown’s global study “AdReaction-Engaging Gen X, Y, and Z”. It is quite enlightening.
Not only do both generations respond to advertising differently but they also shop differently.
Millennials like to shop online. They won’t hesitate to whip out their phone or laptop, search for whatever they need and get it shipped. Boom, done!
Alternately, Gen Zs are very concerned with quality and want to see and feel the item before they buy. They like to make sure they’re making a good buying decision before they shell out their hard-earned money.
Gen z isn't as concerned with brand named gear as Millennials. But, they will align themselves with a brand that they feel is authentic and doesn't try to tell them who they should be.
As these generations age, their priorities will change but their buying habits will remain consistent. Over the next several years more and more of Gen Z will be entering the marketplace. Business owners must be prepared to craft their marketing efforts accordingly.
In addition, don't forget that millennials currently still make up the majority of the buying power and they have the income to spend.
To be successful, your marketing must bring your customers a message that resonates with them and is relevant during the phase of life they are in.
While marketing is certainly not our specialty here at Bankcard International Group, your success as a business is one of our top priorities. B.I.G. is always looking for ways to help our clients succeed in business and marketing is one of the most important acts to fuel that success.
This is by no means a complete list of marketing tips but hopefully it will give you some ideas of how to craft your marketing towards these unique generations. If you can, reach out to a marketing specialist to help you streamline your marketing efforts. But if you can’t, we hope this insight into the differences of your audience helps you create marketing that will engage them effectively.
Now get out there and make your business grow! If you are ready to switch to a payment processor that cares about your business, provides world class service, and the best rates. We look forward to hearing from you!