Make Them Fall In Love With Your Brand: Dos and Don’ts of Gen Z Content Marketing

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Make Them Fall In Love With Your Brand: Dos and Don’ts of Gen Z Content Marketingd-tags
12 October 2023
Gen Z content marketing isn’t just about keeping up; it's about being sustainable, honest, and quick. In a moment you’ll see the winning strategies, latest stats, and innovative content ideas for Gen Z that won’t only help you come up with a new content plan but also redefine your brand’s success with the most influential generation of our time.

9min.

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If we were to create a buyer’s profile for Gen Z, it would look like this:

Buyer’s Profile: Gen Z Shopaholic

  • Name: Zoomin’ Zara
  • Age: 18-24
  • Location: Hipster Haven, USA
  • Bio: A tech-savvy, TikTok-scrolling, avocado-toast-loving Gen Z who’s always on the hunt for the next big trend. Zoomin’ Zara is passionate about individuality, sustainability, and online shopping sprees. They may not own a car, but they’ve got their fashion game on point.
  • Characteristics: Eco-warrior, instant gratification junkie, FOMO fueled

Even though the above is clearly a tongue-in-cheek description, it contains some very good points that online business owners, local business owners, and marketers should consider using when creating content for their Gen Z customers.

To make your content marketing for Gen Z effective, you must realize that…

Unlike other generations, Gen Z isn’t keen on hunting for things to buy. For that very reason, brands need to show up where these young individuals hang out, giving them ideas for products they may fall in love with. To make it work, online and local businesses need to get that Gen Z loves tech, cares about the environment, and is very social.

Interestingly, content marketing for Gen Z shouldn’t just revolve around selling products; it should be also about giving them a shopping experience that fits their values and daily life. By doing this, brands like yours can build a strong connection with this demographic.

So, before you roll up your sleeves and start adopting all the golden rules, included among others in the Content Marketing Guide, to plan out this amazing shopping experience for Gen Z, see what really makes them buy.

Gen Z and Their Shopping Habits

Generation Z, or Gen Z, is a unique group of consumers whose purchasing behaviors are greatly influenced by the digital era in which they grew up. They came of age in a world where the internet was a daily presence, and they are known for being highly active on social media platforms. That’s why it shouldn’t be surprising that according to SurveyMonkey, 29% of Gen Z prefer buying from brands that are present and actively use social media.

The same research shows that for Gen Z, connecting with brands on social media is standard:

a chart showing that among all deINSIGHT #1: Gen Z has a strong preference for online shopping, with the convenience of e-commerce platforms and the ability to browse and purchase products from the comfort of their screens. They are more likely to turn to online marketplaces and web-based stores for their shopping needs. INSIGHT #2: Social media plays a key role in their shopping journey. Gen Z relies on platforms like Instagram, TikTok, and Pinterest for product discovery and recommendations from influencers or peers. This integration of social media and shopping is commonly referred to as “social commerce.” INSIGHT #3: Smartphones are the primary shopping tools for Gen Z. They are accustomed to mobile apps, and online stores must ensure that their websites are mobile-friendly and provide a seamless experience for these users. INSIGHT #4: Gen Z consumers are often price-conscious. They tend to research and compare prices before making a purchase. What’s also interesting, the report from 5WPR shows that 80% of Gen Z will wait for something to become cheaper before they buy it. Why do they do this? It seems to be related to the time they grew up in, which influenced how they think about money. INSIGHT #5: The same survey indicates that Gen Z places greater importance on items such as electronics, technology, health, wellness, and pets. In contrast, Millennials and those from older generations tend to prioritize travel experiences, home goods, and furniture. INSIGHT #9: Gen Z shows a distinct interest in supporting small businesses. According to Afterpay: <div class="delante-text-frame"></div>Gen Z and Millennials are responsible for almost two-thirds of the money spent on small businesses. Since January 2020, Gen Z has increased its spending on small businesses by more than 260%, while Millennials have increased it by 180%.<div class="delante-text-frame"></div> INSIGHT #6: Gen Z is accustomed to fast-paced, on-demand services. They appreciate same-day delivery, instant access to products and services, and are more likely to favor businesses that offer such rapid fulfillment options. INSIGHT #7:Authenticity and transparency are highly valued by Gen Z. They seek brands that share similar values and are willing to support those who take a stand on social and environmental issues. INSIGHT #8: Gen Z places a strong emphasis on sustainability and ethical practices. They are more inclined to support eco-friendly products and companies that are socially responsible. mographics Gen Z is the biggest one to follow brands on social media

source: SurveyMonkey

It’s also important to mention that Gen Z individuals are often seen multitasking with more than one device at a time, which is a behavior known as “multiscreening.” This means that they can be watching a new TV show on a streaming platform while at the same time doing shopping, or even more probably, researching products. What platforms do they trust? Below, you can find the most popular platforms used by Gen Z for learning things about products they’re considering buying:

social media platforms used by gen Z, Millennials and gen X to research products

source: SurveyMonkey

And if you’re wondering where Gen Z’s shopping journey begins, then look at the graph below:

graph showing leading channels where Gen Z consumers begin their shopping journey

source: statista

That being said, we can conclude that these young adults are true digital natives, having been exposed to the world of e-commerce, social media, and smartphones from an early age. As a result, their consumer habits are strictly connected with the digital world. This also means that your content marketing strategy should follow Gen Z’s  digital consumer habits. What are those?

9 Quick Insights to Understand Gen Z’s Consumer Habits

INSIGHT #1: Gen Z has a strong preference for online shopping, with the convenience of e-commerce platforms and the ability to browse and purchase products from the comfort of their screens. They are more likely to turn to online marketplaces and web-based stores for their shopping needs.

INSIGHT #2: Social media plays a key role in their shopping journey. Gen Z relies on platforms like Instagram, TikTok, and Pinterest for product discovery and recommendations from influencers or peers. This integration of social media and shopping is commonly referred to as “social commerce.”

INSIGHT #3: Smartphones are the primary shopping tools for Gen Z. They are accustomed to mobile apps, and online stores must ensure that their websites are mobile-friendly and provide a seamless experience for these users.

INSIGHT #4: Gen Z consumers are often price-conscious. They tend to research and compare prices before making a purchase. What’s also interesting, the report from 5WPR shows that 80% of Gen Z will wait for something to become cheaper before they buy it. Why do they do this? It seems to be related to the time they grew up in, which influenced how they think about money.

INSIGHT #5: The same survey indicates that Gen Z places greater importance on items such as electronics, technology, health, wellness, and pets. In contrast, Millennials and those from older generations tend to prioritize travel experiences, home goods, and furniture.

INSIGHT #6: Gen Z shows a distinct interest in supporting small businesses. According to Afterpay:

Gen Z and Millennials are responsible for almost two-thirds of the money spent on small businesses. Since January 2020, Gen Z has increased its spending on small businesses by more than 260%, while Millennials have increased it by 180%.

INSIGHT #7: Gen Z is accustomed to fast-paced, on-demand services. They appreciate same-day delivery, instant access to products and services, and are more likely to favor businesses that offer such rapid fulfillment options.

INSIGHT #8: Authenticity and transparency are highly valued by Gen Z. They seek brands that share similar values and are willing to support those who take a stand on social and environmental issues.

INSIGHT #9: Gen Z places a strong emphasis on sustainability and ethical practices. They are more inclined to support eco-friendly products and companies that are socially responsible.

Gen Z Content Marketing Insights & Ideas

Right now, Gen Z makes up about 5% of the money spent in the United States. But, in the next few years, that’s predicted to increase to 17%. This means that Gen Z will soon start making a lot more money, and that makes them a significant market for businesses to pay attention to.

graphs showing millenial and gen z share of spend now and by 2023

source: Afterpay Corporate Report

This suggests that you should start making your brand familiar to this group of consumers pretty soon. So, how can you grab Gen Z’s attention? The answer is simple: by using a well-planned content marketing strategy. You can start by considering that:

  1. Reaching out to Generation Z with your content demands a fresh, no-nonsense approach that’s all about creativity and well-thought-out social media communication. Think platforms like TikTok, Facebook, and Instagram – these are the arenas where Gen Z hangs out.
  2. Gen Z’s online presence centers around entertainment, and video content reigns supreme. To truly capture their attention, create short, original videos that go with the current trends.
    💡 For instance, if you’re promoting a fashion brand, consider showcasing quick, fun “outfit of the day” videos with outfits that reflect the latest trends. Or, if you’re into tech gadgets, shoot brief, eye-catching demos highlighting your products’ coolest features.
  3. But it’s not just about video – Gen Z has a soft spot for memes and loves listening to podcasts, so use humor and informative content to resonate with them. Engaging with their sense of humor or addressing topics relevant to their interests can go a long way in making your brand unforgettable to Gen Z.
  4. When talking about creating content for Gen Z, you absolutely need to realize that 97% of Gen Z shoppers say they find their inspiration from social media. This indicates that collaborating with influencers and content creators may be extremely valuable for your brand.

Content Consumption: Gen Z vs. Millennials

When crafting content marketing strategies, it’s a good idea to remember that both Generation Z and Millennials share many common elements. That’s why it makes sense to turn to some proven techniques such as a content marketing funnel that guides each group from awareness to conversion.

However, to effectively capture Gen Z’s attention, you – an e-commerce website owner or marketer – need to recognize the distinctions between these two demographics. This way you’ll be better at adapting your content and engaging with Gen Z more successfully.

Aspect of Content ConsumptionGeneration Z Preferences and Opportunities for E-commerceMillennial Preferences and Opportunities for E-commerce
Favorite Content FormatGen Z likes short videos and memes. Use these for showcasing products and fun campaigns.Millennials prefer longer videos and articles. These are great for detailed product info and brand stories.
Social Media UsageReach Gen Z on TikTok, Instagram, and Snapchat. Use Instagram’s shopping features.Target Millennials on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, and make shopping easy on Instagram.
Online Shopping FrequencyGen Z shops online a lot, so ensure your website is mobile-friendly and offers different payment options.Millennials shop online, but some still visit physical stores. If possible, offer both in-store and online options.
Streaming HabitsGen Z uses many streaming services. This is a good place for product placements and partnering with influencers.Millennials mainly use one or two streaming platforms, so focus on popular ones like Netflix.
Content CreationEncourage Gen Z to create content through challenges and reviews. Share their content for social proof.For Millennials, emphasize user reviews and testimonials as they may share existing content more.
Brand LoyaltyGen Z likes trying new brands. Engage them through interactive content and events.Millennials tend to stick with brands they trust. Build trust through quality products and good service.
Content PreferencesMake fun and trendy content with challenges and memes for Gen Z.Create informative content that matches your brand for Millennials.
Influencers’ ImpactWork with micro-influencers for Gen Z, as they value their opinions.Partner with macro-influencers who align with Millennial values and interests.
News SourcesGen Z uses social media and non-traditional news sources. Share your brand’s values and social responsibility stories.Millennials trust traditional news more, so focus on credibility and ethical practices in your brand documentation.

Creating Content that Resonates with Gen Z

To reach and engage Gen Z effectively, content creators, online businesses, and marketers need to understand what works and what doesn’t with the this demographic.

So, if you’re wondering how to get new customers who were born in the mid-1990s to early 2000s, see the below summary depicting Gen Z’s preferences toward web content.

Dos for Creating Content for Gen Z

✔️ Be Interactive: Use polls, quizzes, or fun challenges to get them involved, like “Choose your favorite style.”
✔️ Keep It Short: Share quick and easy-to-understand info instead of long explanations.
✔️ Mix It Up: Share different types of stuff – videos, funny memes, stories, and more.
✔️ Be Real: Show what’s really happening behind the scenes; they like that.
✔️ Quick and Easy: Make sure your website loads fast, and reply to their messages quickly.
✔️ Honesty Matters: Tell them what your brand stands for, and show you’re being truthful.
✔️ Create a Community: Make them feel like they belong by asking for their opinions.
✔️ Add Fun: Use humor and memes that they enjoy, like funny cat videos.
✔️ Short Videos: Share entertaining short videos, especially on TikTok.
✔️ Smartphone-Friendly: Make your website work well on phones, where they often browse.
✔️ Stay Relevant: Talk about things that are important to them, like climate change or trending topics.

Don’ts for Creating Content for Gen Z

Don’t Skip Videos: Don’t focus only on written stuff; they like videos.
Don’t Overload: Avoid giving them too much to read or watch at once.
Don’t Ignore Their Feedback: Pay attention to what they say and don’t neglect their comments.
Don’t Rely on Old-Fashioned Tools: Don’t use outdated advertising methods that they find boring.
Don’t Use Jargon: Don’t use big words and business talk; keep it simple.

So what can you do? For example, if you’re selling fashion, do fun polls to ask which outfit they like. And if you’re a food brand, share quick and tasty cooking videos they can follow. But don’t overwhelm them with a wall of text or boring old ads that don’t grab their attention.

5 Takeaways of Gen Z Content Marketing

It’s really important for business owners and marketers to grab Gen Z’s attention and keep them as loyal customers. Why? Because Gen Z is a big group of potential customers who can influence others. If you don’t focus on them, soon you’ll have a hard time acquiring new customers and increasing your revenue.

Not to fall behind, consider those 5 factors while creating your content marketing strategy for Gen Z:

  • Gen Z is the first generation to have grown up entirely in the digital age, making them highly proficient in online shopping and mobile app usage.
  • They prioritize businesses with a strong commitment to social and environmental causes and are more likely to support brands sharing similar values with them.
  • Gen Z is heavily influenced by visual content, so incorporating eye-catching images and videos into your online store can be particularly effective in capturing their attention.
  • They have short attention spans, often attributed to their exposure to rapid-scrolling social media platforms, so concise and engaging product descriptions are key to keeping their interest.
  • Gen Z values authenticity and transparent communication from brands, so being honest and relatable in your online store’s messaging can promote building trust and loyalty.

If you still feel that creating content that truly resonates with Gen Z is a bit “too much” for you right now, you can always use our content marketing services. They may turn out as a good starting point, helping you understand the preferences and trends. Remember that we’re here to help you simplify this creative process, gather ideas for your Gen Z content marketing, and establish a meaningful connection with this influential demographic.

FAQ: Gen Z Content Marketing

Why is authenticity crucial in Gen Z content marketing?

Gen Z favors straightforward and real interactions and is incredibly quick to recognize insincerity or shady tactics used by some business owners. Building trust and building long-term loyalty among Gen Z audiences depends on showing them honest and genuine content.

How old are Gen Zs now?

As of October 2023, the oldest members of Generation Z, born around the mid-1990s, are in their late twenties, while the youngest, born in the mid-2010s, are around 8 to 10 years old.

What social media are crucial in Gen Z content marketing?

Online business owners should consider including Gen Z’s love for online shopping in their content marketing. Top social media platforms like offer unique marketing advantages: Instagram’s visual appeal, TikTok’s short videos, and Snapchat’s urgency. Moreover, Gen Z relies on such platforms for product discovery, often seeking recommendations from influencers or peers.

Author
Gosia Chłopicka Marketing Delante
Author
Gosia Chłopicka

Copywriter

She has been working in marketing as a translator, copywriter, and content creator since 2015. Also a trained English teacher, she knows how to make complex ideas easy for anyone to grasp. In her spare time, she enjoys being active and captures moments at weddings and sports events through photography.

Author
Gosia Chłopicka Marketing Delante
Author
Gosia Chłopicka

Copywriter

She has been working in marketing as a translator, copywriter, and content creator since 2015. Also a trained English teacher, she knows how to make complex ideas easy for anyone to grasp. In her spare time, she enjoys being active and captures moments at weddings and sports events through photography.

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