Step aside millennials, a retail revolution is on the horizon, and a new generation is the driving force behind it!
Yes, we are talking about Gen Z. These new customers are more aware, self-reliant, passionate, and pragmatic. They are bringing a whole host of changes to customer habits and preferences with them.
So, is your business ready for this next big retail disrupter? Let’s find out.
The evolution of customers and its impact on sellers
Customers are an integral part of running a successful business. And, over time, these customers evolve, or their habits and preferences evolve. This evolution is inevitable. It might be due to the social, cultural, political, and technological changes that happen around them. As we know, in ancient times, customers preferred the barter system. From there on, we have witnessed various evolutionary cycles and numerous business models as a by-product of it.
For sellers, this is a tricky predicament. In order to stay successful, they have to adapt to these changes. Sometimes all it requires is a small tweak, but sometimes you will have to rethink your total business strategy. On the flip side, this changing customer habits and preferences is an opportunity. You never know, the Gen Z customers might like your product or marketing strategies more than the millennials, and this opens up a whole new avenue of opportunities to sell your products more and boost your brand image.
But who are Gen Z customers?
Gen Z, also known as the post-millennials, is an extremely demanding set of customers with new tastes and preferences. With access to technology from a very early age, Gen Zs are digital natives in a way. They understand and prioritize digital experience unlike the previous generations, which makes them a force to reckon with.
Gen Zs are slowly becoming an integral part of the retail business with tremendous influence in purchase decisions among friends and family. And, it has become vital for businesses, irrespective of their size, to learn to connect with them and understand them. So let’s look at some of the characteristics of Gen Z customers and how you should adapt to them from a business point of view.
Be Social Media Savvy
Unlike millennials who had to adapt, Gen Z customers were born into the social media era. For Gen Zs, Facebook, Twitter, Tiktok, Instagram are tools that will help them build a social identity. And, because of it, this generation is known for spending a significant amount of time on these social media platforms.
If you are a seller trying to cater to the needs and demands of Gen Zs, a good social media presence is an absolute must-have. This generation of customers is far more engaging in these platforms through product reviews, testimonials, and much more. If the millennials were a group that needed reaching out for brand engagement, Gen Zs are a different group of customers who is ever-willing to interact freely with the brand.
As sellers, you must always update your social media channels with product updates, polls, quizzes, and other interactive content. For example, look at the Twitter hashtag “TikTokMadeMeBuyIt” to understand the power of social media when it comes to influencing Gen Zs. As mentioned in the hashtag, the famous video content sharing platform TikTok is one of the major shopping platforms for the Gen Z customer, and many sellers are already leveraging its potential to reap benefits.
Keep It Real
Traditional advertising is not an attractive prospect for Gen Z customers. Instead, they like ads to be authentic and relatable to their daily struggles. More importantly, they like to see real people in ads. And this has given rise to a new form of advertising using social media influencers. They can be fashion models, photographers, travel bloggers, or anyone who have considerable social media followings. Several brands have already spotted this shift in customer behavior and stated using influencer marketing when it comes to Gen Z.
By using these influencers as a medium for advertisements, brands have been able to pull off successful campaigns and reach a higher number of customers due to their authenticity. For example, the below YouTube video by Sprint (T-Mobile now) as part of their #LiveUnlimited campaign featured Lele Pons, Bradley Martyn, and many other influential personalities. The video racked up over 200k views on Youtube, and when Lele Pons posted it on her Instagram handle, it generated around 7.4 million views.
Keep It Short
Like coach Lasso (from the critically acclaimed British TV series Ted Lasso) says, a goldfish is the happiest creature in the world because it has only got a ten-second memory. We believe Gen Z customers are similar to a goldfish because they have a short attention span. So it means that you have a very short time to get your point across before these Gen Z customers start to look elsewhere.
If you are trying to tailor your brand and appeal to Gen Z customers, you need to rethink your marketing strategies. Traditional long-form marketing strategies have a very small chance of hitting the mark. Instead, you should embrace the “Keep it Short” movement. Take advantage of visual elements, use short texts, and capture their attention. Gen Zs communicate using various emojis, memes, GIFs, and more, so you need to be accustomed to these new-age communication trends to create a connection with them.
Slim Jim, the American snack brand, is famous for its Gen Z marketing strategies. With quirky memes and images, Slim Jim’s Instagram page is able to connect with modern customers and send its marketing messages efficiently while boosting the brand image.
As sellers, you must always be proactive. Do extensive research on the changing customer habits and understand how your products, services, and strategies can be tailored around them. With the advent of this new generation of customers, we have already witnessed many brands losing their sheen and appeal. It is due to the fact that they weren’t willing to change. Remember, in a dynamic digital environment, the key to survival lies in innovation and adaptability.
Vajro is here to help as well. With our instant mobile app factory, we will deliver your dream mobile app that is tailored for the Gen Z audience in no time. To book a demo with us, click here.