Skip to content

How Does Gen Z Like to Engage With Brands in 2021?


When was the last time you gave your marketing techniques a facelift? We get it – It can be a challenge keeping up with the latest trends. Still, the truth is that if you’re not appealing to the newest wave of consumers, you could be doing your brand a massive disservice.

But wait, aren’t Gen Z customers bad for business?

Gen Z has been largely touted as a difficult group to market to. They don’t check emails and aren’t loyal to brands, instead preferring to ride the wave of the latest trends. Sound familiar?

Well, we’re here to say – forget everything you’ve heard about the Gen Z community.

Marketers who heed warning about such a vast group of individuals aren’t only missing a trick, but are clearly engaging with their customers in all the wrong ways. The good news is that you can target a Gen Z audience easily just by understanding their preferences.

So let’s dive right in, shall we?

Who’s ‘Generation Z’?

Considered the Millenials’ successors, Gen Z are widely recognised as the current most prevalent consumers out there, and the ones that businesses ought to be appealing to.

Typically born anywhere from the mid 90’s up to as late as 2010, Gen Z is young, “on-trend” and are consuming media at a much higher rate than most other age groups. But this newest wave of consumers is savvier than any that have come before, and knowing how best to engage with them can be tricky. It’s why they’ve earned a bad rep with many “old age” brands.

But there is no secret formula to communicating with Gen Zers, because the truth is, they’re just people like you and me. That said, research reveals that this large group of consumers have preferences when it comes to brand engagement. So, understanding these could go a long way to helping you be recognised and appreciated by a new audience.

Is email marketing wasted on a Gen Z audience?

Email marketing has been around for much longer than any social media ads. However, it is it still effective with this new generation? You could be forgiven for thinking it may fall upon deaf ears when compared to more modern platforms. But, a recent survey revealed that whilst it may not be a Gen Zers favourite method of engagement, it still yields pretty noteworthy results:

  • 28.5% of survey respondents said they made a purchase 2-5 times in the past month as a result of an email
  • 27.9% said they made a purchase once because of an email
  • 5.9% said 6-10 purchases were made in the past month off the back of an email
  • 1% said over 11 purchases had been made due to an email

All pretty positive – but – 36.4% said they never bought anything due to an email in the past month. So whilst email marketing is undoubtedly worth your time when it comes to targeting Generation Z, your efforts could be spent better elsewhere.

So, What About Social Media Then?

Ah, yes – social media. This is home to most Gen Zers, and they know their platforms like the back of their hands. But do they like to engage with businesses through these popular platforms?

Unsurprisingly, this came out on top as the favoured way to engage with brands and led to the most sales during the month. Here are the stats:

  • 33% of survey respondents said they bought something in the past month after seeing it on social media just once
  • 29.5% said they purchased something 2-5 times in the past month
  • 5.2% made between 6-10 purchases in the past month after seeing it on social media
  • 1.6% admitted to making over 11 purchases in the past month

The stats speak for themselves here. but it’s interesting to note that a full 29.8% of respondents said they didn’t make any purchases in the past month through things they saw on social media.

Don’t Forget The Benefits of Face-to-Face Engagement

It’s a common misconception that the younger generation of consumers prefers to remain strictly digital, but this isn’t quite so. Whether it differs depending on the purchase being made or not is unclear. But what we can glean from the survey is that a surprising amount of Gen Zers appreciates face-to-face engagement. With this coming out ahead of ads, chat functions and blogs as the preferred way to communicate.

Taking the necessary steps to readjust your marketing techniques may sound daunting. Still, as you can see here – there’s nothing revolutionary about engaging with Generation Z consumers. Of course, suppose your skills lie in clinching the sale, rather than marketing your brand. In that case, you could opt for a youth marketing agency instead, who specialise in targeting Millennials and Generation Z. They really understand what makes them tick, helping you get the right type of engagement time and time again.