Cold corporate speak
Generation Z are teens who were raised in a digital environment where marketers were not totally in control. Let's face it, every aspect of brand marketing encountered a harsh learning curve during the advent of the internet, and young people were practically raised online. This generation is much more savvy at avoiding pure manipulation by commercials, banner ads, and corporate messaging. If your social media posts and communications regurgitate the same Baby-Boomer marketing jargon that's worked in the past, you're fooling yourself if you think it will work on them. Hire young social media managers who can at least talk the talk and connect with Gen Z in a more authentic way.
Treating Gen Z like Millennials
It seems like only yesterday that marketers got a grasp on how to communicate with Millenials, especially through social media. It might be tempting to conflate this group with Generation Z. After all, what difference does a few years make? Well, it turns out that a 10 year age difference in this fast paced digital world is like a lifetime. Generation Z has a completely different set of role models, vernacular, and media habits. Don't make the mistake of thinking a perfect Millennial marketing message will work on Gen Z as well.
Ignoring new and untested social platforms
It can't be said enough: Generation Z perceives Facebook and Twitter as their parents social platforms. Yes, Gen Z is on those networks, but these social outlets are not where influence occurs. Kik, Snapchat, 4chan, Instagram, and even Tumblr are all unique places that Generation Z is spending time. These new networks are special to young people and scary for marketers because they're generally untested. You need to dive in and take risks. You may not find scale right away, but you might become a trailblazer for effecting consumer behavior with this new generation.
iMedia traveled to ThinkLA's Social Breakfast where we spoke with 20th Century Fox's Katie Lavin. Here's her advice to marketers looking to make an authentic impact on younger consumers.
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Video edited by associate media producer Brian Waters.
"Ten friends do a selfie in a park" image via Shutterstock.