Gen Z Marketing: Characteristics, Strategies and Trends

Generation Z or Gen Z represents the people born between 1997 and 2012. As digital natives who have grown up in a world dominated by technology and social media, Gen Z possesses unique characteristics that shape their consumer behavior.

In marketing, understanding and adapting to the preferences of this generation is crucial for brands seeking to connect with the next wave of consumers.

It’s hard to get this generation’s attention as they grew up with social media and are skeptical of most of the things. But luckily, Gen Z loves videos! Video plays a key role in Gen Z marketing.

Speaking of video, if you want one, our video animation company would be happy to help. So, get in touch!

Want a video for your business?


In this article, we will explore different Gen Z marketing strategies and some important factors to keep in mind.

So let’s get into it!


1. Gen Z characteristics

Some characteristics of Gen Z set them apart from other generations. Knowing what these are is crucial for a successful Gen Z marketing strategy.


i. Digital natives

Gen Z has grown up surrounded by technology, making them adept at navigating online platforms and engaging with digital content.

Marketers need to create campaigns that resonate with their tech-savvy nature. Here’s an example from Apple featuring Olivia Rodrigo.


ii. Short attention spans

With a constant influx of information, Gen Z tends to have shorter attention spans.

Marketing messages need to be concise, engaging and delivered quickly to capture their interest.

Read more: 13 Practical Video Marketing Tips


iii. Authenticity matters

Gen Z values authenticity and transparency. They are more likely to connect with brands that demonstrate genuine social responsibility and a commitment to ethical practices.


iv. Visual content preference

Platforms like Instagram, TikTok, and Snapchat dominate Gen Z’s social media landscape.

Visual content, such as images and short videos, often performs better in capturing their attention compared to lengthy text.

Here’s a video we made for a client. The music works well with the video. It is also suited for Gen Z marketing.


2. Gen Z marketing strategies

i. Utilize social media platforms

Leverage popular social media channels like TikTok, Instagram, and Snapchat for Gen Z marketing campaigns.

Create engaging, short-form content that aligns with the platform’s features.

In 2020, e.l.f. Cosmetics released a song called Eyes. Lips. Face.

e.l.f then partnered with TikTok influencers for its #eyeslipsface challenge, encouraging users to showcase their makeup transformations.

The campaign went viral, generating millions of user-generated videos and significantly boosting brand awareness.


ii. Embrace influencer marketing

Gen Z values peer recommendations. Collaborate with influencers who align with your brand to authentically promote products or services.

Adobe, the creative software company, has taken a unique approach to influencer marketing by partnering with digital artists and creators popular among Gen Z.

Adobe collaborates with influencers and studios who showcase their creative processes using Adobe’s suite of tools.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Adobe (@adobe)


iii. Interactive content

Create interactive and participatory campaigns that allow Gen Z to actively engage with the brand.

Polls, quizzes, and challenges are effective ways to involve the audience.

Converse created a campaign that lets its consumers customize their shoes according to their preferences.

They also have several inspirations for shoe designs to choose from.

Read more: Marketing vs Advertising — What’s the Difference?


iv. Highlight social responsibility

Gen Z is socially conscious and supports brands that align with their values.

Showcase corporate social responsibility initiatives and environmentally friendly practices.

Lush Cosmetics promotes cruelty-free, vegan products with naked packaging to reduce environmental impact.

The brand actively engages in charitable campaigns, supporting causes such as animal rights and environmental conservation.

It resonates strongly with Generation Z’s values of ethical consumption and social activism.


v. Utilize user-generated content

Encourage users to create and share content related to your brand. User-generated content builds authenticity and fosters a sense of community.

GoPro features a ‘Photo of the Day’ on its website and social media channels, showcasing stunning images captured by GoPro users.

It actively encourages customers to submit their adventurous and visually captivating content. By doing this, GoPro builds a community that shares their passion for exploration.

This user-generated content strategy not only promotes the brand but also inspires others to create and share their experiences.


3. Gen Z marketing tips

There are several other important considerations and tips that marketers should be aware of when targeting Generation Z. Here are a few:


i. Mobile-first approach

Generation Z is heavily reliant on smartphones for information consumption and online activities.

Ensure that your marketing campaigns are optimized for mobile devices. It includes responsive websites, mobile apps, and mobile-friendly content.

For example, Instagram’s Reels is a mobile-first video platform designed specifically for videos.

TikTok is another prime example of a mobile-first platform that caters to Generation Z’s love for short-form video content.

Additionally, Snapchat is thriving because of its mobile-first user interface.


ii. Personalization

Gen Z values personalized experiences. Utilize data analytics and AI technologies to tailor marketing messages, recommendations, and offers based on individual preferences and behaviors.

Netflix’s recommendation algorithm provides personalized content suggestions based on a user’s viewing history.


iii. Embrace diversity and inclusivity

Gen Z is known for its commitment to diversity and inclusivity. Ensure that your marketing campaigns reflect a broad range of voices, cultures, and backgrounds to resonate with this generation’s values.

Airbnb’s #HostWithPride campaign celebrates the LGBTQ+ community by featuring stories of hosts and their experiences.

By highlighting diverse narratives and creating a platform for hosts to share their personal stories, Airbnb fosters diversity and inclusivity.

This campaign aligns with Gen Z’s values of acceptance and genuine representation.


iv. Incorporate gamification

Gamification elements can enhance engagement with Gen Z. Consider integrating game-like features, challenges, or rewards into your marketing campaigns to make them more interactive and entertaining.

Nike’s Run Club app incorporates gamification by offering challenges and rewards to users based on their running achievements.

This gamified approach not only enhances user engagement but also encourages a sense of friendly competition among the running community.


v. Innovative social commerce

Generation Z is comfortable with making purchases directly through social media platforms.

Explore social commerce options, such as shoppable posts and in-app purchasing features, to streamline the customer journey.


vi. Emphasize sustainability

Gen Z is environmentally conscious, and sustainability is a key factor in their purchasing decisions.

Highlight eco-friendly practices and showcase efforts to reduce the environmental impact of your products or services.

Patagonia’s ‘Worn Wear’ campaign encourages customers to buy and sell used Patagonia clothing.

It promotes a circular economy and emphasizes the brand’s commitment to sustainability.

Read more: What Is Travel Marketing and How Video Can Help?


That’s a wrap

Understanding the unique characteristics of Gen Z marketing is important for brands aiming to stay relevant in the ever-evolving landscape of marketing.

We hope this article was helpful. By adapting strategies that resonate with Gen Z’s preferences and values, marketers can establish authentic connections and build brand loyalty.

If you want someone to make a video as part of your Gen Z marketing campaign, reach out. Our team is here to help.

Want a video for your business?


Posted by Samra Tiwana

Subscribe to the MotionCue Newsletter

For monthly video and marketing insights from company founder/CEO Osama Khabab

Contact Us

    This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.