One outcome of growing up in that environment is that Gen Z carry a healthy dose of cynicism and a fierce commitment to social issues. In other words: They’re passionate, they know when you’re faking—and they aren’t afraid to call you on it.
“I don’t need brands to use their ads to tell me that they are ‘woke’ or that their brand is ‘lit’. The worst. If you are saying it, then you aren’t it,” 18-year-old Mimi from San Francisco told last year’s Irregular Report.
The brands that stand out to them are the ones that “seem to care about people rather than just profit,” said 20-year-old Tosin from London.
And while they may not buy into traditional loyalty programmes, they are loyal to causes they care about. Nearly three-quarters, or 69%, of Gen Z, for example, are more likely to buy from a company that contributes to social causes. Conversely, some 33% have stopped buying from a company that contributes to a cause with which they disagree.
Bottom line: All the slick marketing in the world won’t work on this crowd unless your brand has a real purpose that’s backed up with real action.