Bob Garfield

3 fundamental ways Generation Z differs from Millennials

Surprise! There's a powerful new group of consumers you need to know. Here's how they think.

Generation Z is adamant about turning hobbies into careers

It seems that every generation has a few shining stars who are able to create amazing things early in life and define their future. Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, and Mark Zuckerberg are all examples of entrepreneurs who broke the mold and turned their hobbies into careers. They were able to do this because they grew up at a time where digital was still fairly young. Generation Z will be the first generation raised when digital is the norm. This generation lives its life in all things digital, and its online footprint is often its most important hallmark. Because of this, a staple of Gen Z has become wanting to turn hobbies into jobs and use the internet as a vehicle to make this happen. Vloggers, artists, writers, and young computer experts are all empowered by the internet to gain followings, fans, and make money off the things they love to do. This generation is highly independent and ambitious. If they think they can make their own mark on the world, they are going to try.

They want to be friends with their parents

Remember when you were a kid and wanted nothing to do with your mom and dad? OK, so Generation Z certainly has some of this, but overall this is a generation that actually wants to be connected with parents. Gen Z perceives family as a support group and personal advocates for success. This is quite the difference from not only Millennials, but from Generation Y and X, which largely saw independence and a separation from authority figures. All indications are that Gen Z will be very close to family.

They have a strong desire to give back

Generation Z is a very liberal generation and overall, highly progressive. One of the hallmarks of this is their desire to volunteer, advocate, and give back to their community. They want to be a part of something greater than themselves. Gen Z relishes in the opportunity to belong to a group that represents its viewpoints, and has the instinct to congregate and be heard. This generation will be very vocal about a variety of political and social issues. Few know more about Generation Z than T.J. Marchetti, CMO of AwesomenessTV, a YouTube network and sketch show aimed at that hard-to-reach demographic. Here's what he says are the three biggest ways Gen Z will change the way you'll need to market.

Article written by senior media producer David Zaleski.

Video edited by associate media producer Brian Waters.

"Conceptual Generation z concept ad on black chalkboard" image via Shutterstock.

 

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