Marketing to millennials is a common headline and strategy these days, but there’s an entire technology-driven generation most businesses fail to consider: Generation Z. These consumers are also known as the iGeneration, Net Gen, or Digital Natives. They’re born between 1995 and 2014 and comprise an emerging and important part of today’s market. They are the first generation that has grown up swimming in a vastly digital world. The way they shop, socialize, work and engage with businesses requires a slightly different approach from brands.

Here are some strategies for reaching Gen Z consumers more effectively:

Optimize for Multiple Devices

Gen Z individuals consume media six to nine hours a day using an average of five screens, including smartphones, tablets, laptops, TV, and gaming systems. Optimizing your branding and strategy to work smoothly and consistently across your website, social media channels, and shopping cart will allow Gen Z customers to research, contact, and complete purchases seamlessly. Creating an app also allows them to access your product, services, and social channels in the format they prefer and across several devices.

Cultivate Short, Quality Content

Flashy advertising has become the bane of marketers’ existence when trying to attract millennials. The same goes for Gen Z consumers, who respond more deeply to native advertising tactics. They also don’t spend a lot of time reading long pieces of material, so keeping headlines, posts and blog articles short with quality content that is relevant to them will catch their attention and draw them in. Providing buttons for social sharing also allows them to quickly and easily share your content on their personal pages.

Be Authentic & Honest

When it comes to Gen Z consumers, being fake, dishonest, or even fudging the truth a little will quickly black list your brand from not only their wallets, but anyone they share with through word-of-mouth. But for most businesses, being brazenly truthful and authentic in their communication builds trust and even warrants forgiveness when a customer feels wronged. Brands that have values and stick by them gain Gen Z trust and garner organic engagement and feedback.

Tap into Influencer Marketing

Influencers have the power to reach consumers in a different way than businesses do. They create communities in niche industries, nurturing loyal followers and engagement. Finding influencers who share your brand’s core values and building a strong, long-term relationship with them can help reach Gen Z consumers in a native, organic way. They become a part of your story and transform your product into an experience or lifestyle for them and their followers.

Cater to their Individuality

Brands need to make Gen Z consumers feel like they are speaking to them specifically. Storytelling should be done in a way that feels relatable and relevant to their lives. They want the ability to personalize a product or be able to work with a company’s management for a special occasion. Targeting should be very specific, and businesses should segment those audiences to craft more individualized messaging. Listening and paying attention to the preferences and trends of Gen Z consumers will help you hone in on how to create and deliver content and campaigns that feel personal. People want to buy from other people, not machines. When brands show an authentic, human nature and offer personalized products and services, they will become loyal, lasting customers and advocates.

Contact Union Leader for help creating an effective marketing strategy to reach generation Z consumers.