Generation Z shoppers are an important target market for retailers, and that’s why many businesses are focusing on the best ways to connect with these “Zoomers.” Gen Z consumers have unique personalities and preferences for how they like to interact with brands and differ significantly from previous generations. Vee24 has worked with many client partners to strategize on building connections and establishing a trusting relationship with Zoomers, and we’ve learned a lot about how best to reach out to these customers. Here are some things to consider:
Exploring what Gen Z Wants
Gen Z shoppers want live experiences that reflect their own voice, personality, and values. They love social media apps like TikTok because they can share thoughts or experiences in their own voice. Some retailers are giving customers the chance to act as brand ambassadors and share what they like about a specific brand or experience in their own distinctive style. This kind of personal connection really resonates with Gen Z.
Understanding How the Gen Z Shopping Experience is Different
Zoomers want shopping experiences to be personalized and unique to them – not something based on a clunky algorithm that’s not always on target. Gen Z shoppers have basically experienced personalization from the time they were born. They can smell a half-hearted marketing effort from a mile away, and don’t have much patience for it. Zoomers want genuine personalization and nothing less. Algorithms can help a retailer identify and prioritize potential customers, but they can’t be a substitute for establishing a real human connection.
Gen Z shoppers also want authenticity and spontaneity in their online and in-person shopping experiences. They are done with perfectly curated brands. Well-timed messages and picture-perfect marketing presentations are getting old. Gen Z shoppers trust influencers when making buying decisions because they give a more believable picture of the potential of a new product or service.
The bottom line is, for Gen Z shoppers, a spontaneous engagement that’s truly personal and effortlessly interactive lends itself well to creating authentic relationships.
What You Can You Do to Connect with Gen Z Shoppers?
Knowing how differently Zoomers like to interact with brands, retailers need to be ready to change things up and break some of the marketing “norms” to be able to form relationships with Gen Z shoppers. For example, retailers may need to keep their brand story open-ended and activate the brand before the story is complete, giving Zoomers a chance to envision themselves as part of that story. This can be scary for retailers used to hyper-controlling their brand, but it can pay off in a big way in the potential to engage with a new audience. Zoomers value transparency from the brands they connect with and want to be sure those brands align with their values. Many Gen Z shoppers are happy to spend money on luxury goods if they know the product is ethically and sustainably produced.
Instead of presenting Zoomers with a completely formed brand story, retailers need to invite Gen Z shoppers to shape the brand narrative with them. Zoomers need to hear their own voice in the story to feel connected to the brand. Let’s involve them and meet them where they are, whether that is online, via mobile, or in person.
Gen Z Experiences Start on the Internet, But Don’t End There
Engage Gen Z shoppers on their own terms. Zoomers research online to figure out exactly what they want, how they want it, and when to purchase it. But they also value in-person experiences. Retailers that succeed with Gen Z shoppers will do so by allowing them to schedule in-store or virtual experiences at their convenience. Not only does giving the customer more control reduce anxiety on their behalf but retailers can better exceed expectations with preparation to curate product selection and truly personalize the experience.
The good news is, Zoomers are incredible brand amplifiers. It is no question that they are a generation with purpose and zeal. Once they discover your brand’s purpose, they will take your company’s storytelling to the next level. All it takes is genuine empathy and a willingness to be honest with this audience so you can engage Gen Z in a way that reaps great benefits for your brand moving forward.
Want to learn more about creating the right customer experience for your Gen Z shoppers? Vee24 can help you build your digital strategy.