Why Marketers Must Take Notice of Gen Z

By: Audrey Bell, Brand Leadership and Gaby Sosa, Social Media


Just as marketers are grasping the techniques to successfully reach Millennials, their eyes are quickly shifting as Gen Z enters the marketplace. Many brands, however, haven’t quite grasped the distinction between Millennials and this new generation. Although the age ranges differ between sources, the general consensus is that Millennials are defined as adults ranging from 18 to 34 years old while Gen Z features a slight overlap in being defined as ages 2 to 19.

The Truly Diverse Generation

Gen Z is the largest, most diverse generation yet. In fact, it is projected to be the last generation with a Caucasian majority. Since 2000, there has been a 50% increase in multiracial youth population in the U.S. Currently, this generation alone makes up 25.9% of the U.S. population. The breakdown of ethnicities of Gen Z is as follows:

  • 55% Caucasian
  • 24% Hispanic
  • 14% African American
  • 4% Asian

Given that this generation consists of individuals aged 2 to 19 years old, they have been able to witness such monumental events as marriage equality in the US, the nation’s first African-American president, and widespread growth of digital technology. They are the quintessential digital natives.

The Hispanic Gen Zer

This generation is “beginning to reflect the Gen X parenting style in their mindset.” However, the story is a little different for the Hispanic members of this generation. 55% of Hispanic Gen Z are being raised by Millennials. Due to the age of their young parents, Hispanic members of this generation are more likely to believe in the American Dream and place a large importance on higher education. They also aim to preserve their cultural roots. Brands know the importance of Hispanic Millennials, but they should take notice of Hispanic Gen Z because of their growing demographic and their rising purchasing power. After all, the U.S. Gen Z already holds over $200 billion in purchasing power.

Mobile Habits of Gen Z

Gen Z has demonstrated different mobile and social networking habits from their Millennial predecessors. Many members of this generation have left Facebook in favor of ephemeral social media, such as Snapchat and Kik. The majority of Snapchat users are between the ages of 13 and 24, meaning a good portion of the users belong to Gen Z. Overall, Gen Z is more than comfortable with smartphones, with many reporting that they are part of day-to-day interactions and activities.

  • 86% use their smartphone multiple times a day
  • 68% say they are as comfortable shopping online as offline, but 67% still prefer to shop offline

Finding a marketing equilibrium has never been more vital to brands’ strategies. In addition to strategies targeting Millennials, brands must pay attention and learn how to appeal to the rising influence and purchasing power of Gen Z to build brand awareness among them. Brands need to adapt to make room in their strategies for two generations that are very comfortable in the digital and mobile world. Check out the Provoke 59 about these tech toddlers below.


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