Generation Z and the Joy of Missing Out

As the youngest millennials move into their mid-twenties, marketers are looking to target the new generation entering the workforce. Generation Z, those born between 1995 and 2015, making them roughly between the ages of four and 24, are the world’s first digital native group born into technology. Never knowing life before the internet, they’ve revealed a unique approach to content consumption.

Wattpad, a social storytelling platform, recently performed a study of 400 Gen Zers called “How Gen Z Is Finding Balance in an Upside Down World,” which showed that this group experiences a high amount of stress (note that they aren’t talking about the four-year-olds). In fact, 95 percent of teenage and early twenties Gen Zers said they report feeling stressed somewhat to very often. This has resulted in this group adopting ‘JOMO’ or the Joy of Missing Out, a movement about finding a balance between the online and offline world. For example, nearly half of the Gen Z-ers surveyed said they dedicate a few hours a day to logging off social media to escape.

The JOMO lifestyle gets a little trickier though since a good majority of the Gen Z population also use their phones and technology as a way to relax in the forms of reading, listening to music, playing games or watching videos. This generation may still be online, but they are selective with their content consumption.

How can brands break through the noise?

It turns out Generation Z has remarkably short attention spans — think goldfish level short. According to Oberlo, it is best to target this group with snackable content like Instagram Stories and Snapchat, as opposed to drawn-out media that is going to take up a lot of one’s time to consume. It has also been proven that Gen Z loves video, so mastering this form of content and being able to tell a story in 30 seconds or less should be on the top of any marketers to-do list. See how Aerie does this below and learn more tips about creating snackable content here.

Influencers are often the best liaisons to connect your brand to this generation. Google found that 70 percent of teenage YouTube users relate to influencers more than traditional celebrities, with some of the most popular content being unboxing, tutoring or haul videos that show off the influencers’ latest purchases, new gadgets and more. But, in this case, it’s not just the teenagers making an impact. In 2018, the highest paid influencer was a seven-year-old named Ryan who reviews toys. It was reported that his videos last year received more than 26 billion views.

So, when you think of Generation Z, think of short, to-the-point content, think videos and think light-hearted! Life is stressful enough as it is.