How to Use Social Media to Connect With Gen Z-ers This Summer
Beer gardens, longer days, burgers on the barbie… There’s little to dislike about summer. With the holidays quickly approaching, many of us will have the chance to cherish more time with the digital natives in our family. That’s when they’re not creating a TikTok to jump on the latest viral trend.
As we mark the start of six lecture-free weeks, Gen Z-ers will be putting away the textbooks and welcoming the season of lie-ins and lazy days, which means their screen time (and peanut butter consumption) will be passing with each and every day.
Recent studies have revealed that Gen Z-ers spend an average of 8 hours a day online, 85% of which involves use of social media to discover new products. This means making your brand stand out from the crowd and calls for a marketing strategy with more steps than a garden focaccia (Google it).
Read ahead as we share five easy ways to cut through the noise and interact with your younger audiences in an honest and authentic way. Notebooks at the ready…
Focus on nailing your purpose
Gen Z-ers are known to be the most digitally savvy generation – this goes without saying. But they’re also the most progressive. They want to make a meaningful positive impact on the world, and are ready to listen, learn and take action on social issues. In other words, they’re holding themselves accountable and they expect brands to be doing the same.
A recent survey conducted by Marketing Dive shows Gen Z are twice as likely to care about issues and three times more likely to say the purpose of a business is to ‘serve communities and society’. So whether its diversity, equality, inclusivity, environmental issues or mental health, defining a clear purpose for your brand is key. Once that’s nailed, you can then be more transparent about your beliefs and ethos when engaging with your audiences on social media.
Be creative with how you engage
Not only are they the most progressive of us all, but Gen Z-ers have also been given the ‘most creative’ award. A recent survey revealed that 51% of Gen Z believe that their generation is more creative (both on and off the grid) than millennials and Gen X. It’s no surprise, then, that their feeds are perfectly curated.
Whether it’s an Instagram aesthetic or a TikTok of that morning matcha – creativity is at the core of Gen Z’s content. So if you want to interact with this generation, try encouraging them to engage with you in creative ways. This could be an Instagram story poll, or designing fun filters for them to use – social media moguls are becoming more innovative than ever before to help brands to add a splash of creativity to their content.
Social media tagging has multiple benefits – and is something that every brand should be jumping on. There’s plenty of flexibility around how you approach it, too. For example, you can use a branded hashtag to track any posts relating to your brand. The result? A beautiful looking feed of all your products. Feel free to get creative with the tag, as the more memorable it is, the more people will want to use it.
Another way of tagging is through locations. Simply create a physical location of where your brand is based, so that users can then tag themselves there in their content. This will obviously depend on what your company offers, but by having an Instagram-worthy location, Gen Z-ers will feel more inspired to be seen there.
Finally, you can ask your Gen-Z audience to ‘tag a friend’ in your posts. This is a super simple yet impactful way to encourage your followers to engage in your posts without requiring too much effort – and can drive rapid engagement.
Go all out with video
Video content has taken over the world thanks to the rise of TikTok, with its funky filters, catchy tunes and eye-catching effects. Now, other platforms are following suit, with Instagram’s Reels and YouTube’s Shorts getting in on the action. Making up a huge 60% of TikTok’s users, Gen Z are leaders of the short-form video social revolution, and they know a thing or two about what makes a video pop. For best performance, keep it brief and snappy – 30-60 seconds is the sweet spot.
If you’re not already taking to TikTok to promote your products, it might be worth bearing in mind that 85% of Gen Z-ers use social media to learn about new products. This makes TikTok a valuable tool for targeting them.
Make them laugh
Humour is a sure-fire way to secure Gen Z’s engagement. Brands that take themselves too seriously just don’t wash with this super-savvy, meme- creating generation.
Gen Z have an unrivalled ability to see through brands – they value authenticity, but they also appreciate comedy. Catch their attention with a culturally aware joke that fits well with your brand identity.
Gen Z-ers are more likely to accept your brand as part of popular culture if they perceive it as ‘fun’ and ‘relatable’. Just be careful – the internet joke cycle turns fast, meaning jokes become old and ‘cringey’ pretty quickly. To successfully use humour in your social campaigns, make sure you’re always up to date with the latest trends and meme formats so that you never fall foul of using an outdated catchphrase.
Discover more about the formula for stand-out summer social content. Get in touch with the L’Attitude network.
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