5 Marketing Tips for Startups Eyeing Gen Z

No, Generation Z did not just pop out of nowhere.

We found a Harvard Business Review article that talked about this demographic back in 2015. Joan Schneider, the article author, called it the iGeneration or iGens. Generally, it comprises the youth born from 1994 to 2005. These individuals are graduating high school and college. Barely entering the workforce, they’re already expected to make up 20 percent of the consumer pie by 2020.

Huge potential. 

Given this huge potential, it is not too early for businesses to start marketing to iGens. Take the time to understand their behaviors and interests. Unlike their older peers, the millennials, they are truly digital natives. They grew up alongside the evolution of Mesozoic mobile phones into more sophisticated smartphones. A world without Google, they never got to personally know. So don’t be surprised by the way they consume content. Read our 5 marketing tips to get you up to speed:

Offer specific solutions.

The term hyper-personalized gets thrown around a lot. It best describes and summarizes the kind of solutions that appeal to iGens. Let’s break the term down a bit. It is rooted in the idea of customizing content based on your target audience’s activities and likes. Now, with hyper-personalization, customization is done on a per-user basis. Think about how Netflix suggests movies or series it thinks you will be interested to see next.


This tactic is not without its challenges. If you are offering a product or a service, will you sacrifice commonality over the specific tastes of individual consumers? Maybe you shouldn’t. Instead, if you sell drinks, provide them with options that boost the energy of those who are on the go or cater to the diet of those who are obsessed with fitness.

Present exceptional value.

The iGens are value-conscious consumers. This attitude can be traced from their expanded worldview, which determines their priorities. And these days, their priorities go beyond the basics and the bottom line. As renters, they are said to look for environmentally-responsible buildings and amenities.

As consumers, they are known to connect with brands that fit the lifestyle and culture they devour. This kind of behavior signals to businesses the need to inject doses of excellence and conscience into all of their processes, including product development, creation, and marketing.

Behavior toward renting property. 

The infographic from Forrent below focuses on Gen Z’s behavior toward renting property, but it has some good points about the general qualities that appeal to this generation’s members.


Infographic courtesy of ForRent

Reach out to them on social media.

Let’s return to the fact that iGens are digital natives. They share aspects of their life on social media. This means they are highly-accessible to businesses. And what may seem too informal for older generations can be quite normal for these young adults.

One good example is their ability to reach out to each other in a casual manner. What about when they need to buy something? A 2014 MMNPL survey said that 50% would go to YouTube to learn about new products. Meanwhile, only 25 percent would check emails from brands.

Create engaging content.

It is not a secret that engagement ranks high in determining if your online campaigns are doing well or not. But have you heard about the other ROI or return on interaction? If your idea of producing online content is akin to producing a television show, then something is already fundamentally wrong about it.

Digital media is not a one-way channel. At the same time, iGens will not give you the time of day if you are not speaking to them. To engage them on Snapchat, for instance, you need to listen to them first. And then try to make conversation. They’d love that.

You've got to include the "freebie" game. 

Meanwhile, they like getting freebies. But again, they will also pay for something they believe is of value. In this regard, you may offer free or paid courses. You can take advantage of platforms that allow you to design knowledge-sharing campaigns.

For instance, Kajabi not only offers the tools you need to build a course in one place; it also gives you access to potential buyers and users of your product. And that marketplace can include the iGens. In doing so, you can focus on distilling your own knowledge into bite-sized information for your target audience.

Bring iGens into the fold.

Lastly, do not be afraid to hire members of the Gen Z. Get onboard one or two persons without prior corporate experience but with years of dipping into the industry. You can ask them about their expectations of the industry, met or unmet.

This strategy can help you in better understanding this demographic. It can also be a source of ideas for innovation. Further, you can put the iGens in areas where their voice will matter a lot such as product design or marketing.