Insight into Gen Z Every Marketer Needs to Know

Consumers age 18-22 or Gen Z do not trust businesses to act in the best interests of society, according to “The Reckoning: Brand Relevance, Respect and the Rise of a New Generation,” a study by BBMG.

BBMG and GlobeScan conducted a national survey of 2,058 consumers to better understand people’s relationship with brands and brand trust, leadership, loyalty, participation and evangelism.

Key Study Findings

  • By a margin of five to one, Gen Z does not trust businesses to act in the best interests of society
  • 47% think brands should speak out on issues
  • 37% trust large companies where employees reflect a culture of being empowered to have a positive impact
  • 28% care about equality – social, racial, women’s rights, LBGTQ rights
  • 32% of Gen-Zers hope to make a difference by doing meaningful work in their careers

Five Strategies for Marketers

One outcome was defining five strategies for brands to be seen as authentic to you consumers.

Companies have to be careful as they market to GenZ. They are quick to spot insincerity and will not tolerate untargeted efforts to get their attention.

Be Brave

Brands should take a stand and give voice to their values. Gen Z isn’t afraid to take a stand on the issues that matter and they expect the same from brands.

Hold Space

Gen Z values opportunities for their voices to be shared, heard, expressed and validated. Successful brands will create space for the authentic expression of their experiences and creating platforms that amplify their voices and drive impact.

Welcome All

Gen Z is driven by a powerful desire for fairness and equity. They are the most diverse generation in our nation’s history. They want a world that welcomes all people no matter their race, ethnicity, gender identity or sexual orientation.

Fuel Passion

Gen Z has an entirely new perspective on wealth, well-being and the workforce and they’re seeking brands and communities to help them challenge the status quo.

Own It

Authenticity matters. Gen Z is ready to champion brands that show bravery on the issues that matter. They are also the first to call out brands that promote a commitment to doing good while staying silent about the negative impacts that make their success possible.

Make the Most of Instagram Stories

Storytelling is an effective way to share your message on Instagram. With many brands now using  Instagram Stories, several best practices are emerging.

Understand the Format

Instagram Stories is a feature that lets users post photos and videos that vanish after 24 hours.

Instagram Stories appear in a bar at the top of the feed. All Instagram accounts can share stories. When there’s something new to see, the profile photo has a colorful ring around it.

To view a story, users tap on the profile photo and the story will appear full-screen, showing all the content posted in the last 24 hrs. The content plays in chronological order from oldest to newest.

Seven Frames Is Best

The best length for Instagram stories is seven frames. Research has shown that after seven frames engagement drops to less than half.

Engagement Is on Personal Time

Most people engage with Instagram on their personal time. Early morning hours, lunchtime, and evening hours are peak for engagement.

This likely aligns with when people have time to actually watch Stories. They’re more involving than a regular Facebook post or a tweet, so they require a bit more time.

Keep it Simple

People are looking for quick, effective frames, not in-depth content. Simple images are best at drawing viewers in.

 

Tracking Your SEO Efforts

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a pain! First you need to figure out your keywords and the other elements that go into ranking well. Then you need to do the work. Finally, you need to figure out if your SEO strategy works.

Search results are highly volatile. There are so many factors:

  • Ranking algorithms change and those changes are never announced or specified
  • Ranks drop based on what you do
  • What people search changes
  • Competitors catch up and throw you off the top

In the midst of all this, you need to know if your SEO efforts are working and find areas for improvement. Not easy.

SEO Elements to Track

Keywords remain a top factor in SEO. Track your rankings for each over time. I recommend that you look once a quarter.

It may be tempting to look more often, but rankings are very volatile. I have seen clients literally go from rank 1 to rank 49 for a keyword one day and then surge back to rank 1 the next day. All that with no changes to their website!

You also want to track what competitors are doing. Always be on the lookout for new competitors as well. What keywords are they competing for? Where do they outrank you?

Google is, of course, the search engine people use most. So, you will want to look at your Google Search Console for any flags or errors and address them immediately. I suggest you log in once a month. This assures that no issue seriously damages your SEO effort.

Never Stop

SEO is not one and done. You need to constantly assess your progress and make changes. That may mean tweaking content around a newly emerging keyword or keyphrase. It can mean fixing broken links. There’s always maintenance to do.

Keep researching SEO best practices. These change all the time as the search engines evolve and as people change their search behaviors. For example, voice searches are now common. Search engines expect all sites to be secure (HTTPS). New factors emerge all the time.