While there’s been a lot of humdrum lately about millennials and marketing initiatives focussed on them, perhaps it is time for marketers to rethink and refocus on the next generation of largely neglected consumers – Gen Z.
This generation has grown up watching their parents focus on fresh food for their children. Being technologically well-equipped, Gen Z knows more about nutrition than any generation did at this age. They demand Ingredient Transparency – to know where their food is from, how it is grown and if it is healthy. ‘Natural’ food alone is not enough to satisfy them though. They want their food fresh and personalized for them. Here, customization is the key and a big reason for the popularity of brands like Chipotle and Mexican Grill that offer freshly prepared burritos and pizzas, customized and personalized for their new generation of grocerant consumers. According to a report, Gen Z spends 20% more on food than millennials did back in 2003, so food brands need to start winning this rapidly growing demographic group that accounts for about 27% of the global population.
They prefer to visit stores in person. A majority of Gen Z consumer buy from brick and mortar stores because of the option to feel and try products before buying them. That said, they don’t want to let go of their technology either. It is important to note that brands are heavily integrating online with offline as a majority of Gen Z’s purchases are influenced by online interactions. Brands like Lego and Converse have taken their shopping experience to another level through AR powered kiosks and product packaging. These tech add-ons enable their consumers to imagine what their finished kits will look like or if the shoes they plan to buy will go with a particular outfit or not.
The bottom line is that Gen Z is all about total awareness. If you don’t deliver to them what they want, the way they want it, they already have a plan B. They will not even bother complaining and just move on. The brands that understand this phenomenon and are prepared to be flexible keeping Gen Z in mind, are the ones who will see themselves successfully leading the market in the coming years.