You might assume everyone here at Smoking Gun towers was all about giving brands an insight into developing an effective millennial marketing strategy. Nothing could be further from the truth, though.
Attendees at our event yesterday morning, The Millennial Mindset, will know only too well that we have a keen understanding of this demographic. We know how companies should be trying to reach them, and, more importantly, how they definitely should not.
But that doesn’t mean all we think about is ages 21-35 (or thereabouts). Our staff have as broad a skill set as they have expertise with different sections of society. So while we know our millennial marketing inside and out, we also understand this is not the only group with serious consumer power.
Introducing Gen Z
According to a new analysis by Bloomberg, assessing data from the United Nations, a staggering 32% of the global population will fall into the next age group, Gen Z, next year.
This means that although millennials currently account for the largest demographic in history percentage wise, their days at the top are numbered. Their time in the limelight is already on the wane.
But how do you work out who Gen Z actually are?
Firstly, and most obviously, it’s all about when people were born. Anyone born in 2001 or later can be considered part of this group. Or at least that’s the definition Bloomberg has gone for.
In terms of traits, while our work with millennial marketing has made it clear that you can’t paint everyone with one broad brush stroke, Gen Z do have some consistent attributes. For one thing, it is believed that they are less self-centred and more self-aware than their older counterparts.
“[T]he younger people placed a greater emphasis on their role in the world as part of a larger ecosystem and their responsibility to help improve it,” says Marcie Merriman in her report, Rise of Gen Z: New Challenge for Retailers.
If we consider the strong ethics in the millennial mindset, then to have the next generation looking less selfish could bode well for the future of the planet. But let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves just yet.
This isn’t the first time millennials have been lambasted when compared with another generation, but it’s vital to read between the lines. Described in the reports as ‘idealistic’, ‘entitled’, ‘creative’ and ‘dependent’, while Gen Z are ‘realistic’, ‘innovative’ and ‘self-reliant’, it’s remarkably easy to find evidence that suggests the impact millennials have on society is actually far more positive.