AdAge has published the results of a new survey of the technology usage and buying habits of 22,723 college-age GenZ's in the USA, UK, Australia and New Zealand conducted in conjunction with Student Affinity Network UNiDAYS.
GenZs made up 27% of the population and controlled $143B in spending in the USA in 2017, so this is important!
Some commonalities the researchers found include:
- Fort GenZs, technology is business as usual, not new and exciting as for previous generations.
- 98% own a smartphone and 94% own a laptop computer.
- But only 14% own a smartwatch and only 18% use fitness trackers.
- They enjoy shopping at brick-and-mortar stores.
- They get news from social media, but prefer print books to digital ones.
Myth #1: GenZs are digital natives so will respond better to digital than to any other kind of media.
Reality: GenZs are adept at tuning out digital noise: 74% don't watch Facebook Live shows, 64% don't listen to podcasts and 56% don't click ads on websites - but 84% look at digital out-of-home advertising in trains, malls, airports, taxis.
Recommendation: Create content tailored to GenZs and deliver it through the platforms they use.
Myth #2: GenZ won't pay for apps.
Reality: Most GenZs have disposable income. and 89% use 1 to 10 apps daily. Apps they're willing to pay for include music apps (66%), game and entertainment apps (31%), health apps (24%), utility/productivity apps (18%).
Recommendation: Offer apps that will help GenZs achieve personal goals or pursue passions.
Myth #3: GenZs are forgetting about traditional formats like TV and paperbacks.
Reality: GenZs watch the same streaming services as GenXs and Millennials do, but 48% on laptops vs. 32% on TV and 10% on mobile. 80% get most of their news from social media, 55% from apps - but 77% read print books.
Recommendation: Don't be in too big a hurry to abandon brick-and-mortar stores and print for a digital-only strategy.
Myth #4: GenZs are into sharing, don't care about data privacy.
Reality: 58% don't trust Facebook with their personal data, 78% are picky about which apps know their geolocation. They prefer Snapchat for its instantly-disappearing messages.
Recommendation: Guard their data. If they find you're selling it or sharing it with third parties, they'll stop doing business with you.
Myth #5: GenZs shop primarily via smartphone.
Reality: Although a majority use smartphones for browsing, comparing prices, finding reviews, checking availability and finding store locations, 60% prefer to use a desktop to buy online, vs. 22% who prefer to use their mobile browser. E-mail is their most preferred channel for contacting a brand. And they want your phone to be answered within 45 seconds.
Recommendation: Be easy reach by smartphone, but don't neglect desktop and phone.
The bottom line: GenZ can be reached through more channels than any preceding generation. But your messaging must incorporate what matters to GenZ.
See more here about GenZ's mobile mindset .