Members of the Gen-Z demographic watch an average of 68 videos per day across five platforms, according to a new report from Awesomeness TV — highlighting for marketers the importance of creating customized video content across YouTube, Snapchat and more.
In fact, 75 percent of Gen-Z teens say that Snapchat is the best platform for staying connected and informed, while 71 percent say that YouTube is the best place to consumer long form content, defined as videos over 10 minutes. The takeaway overall? While the digital revolution affects all demographics, Gen-Z appears unique in that video — rather than voice or text — is a primary means of communicating, sharing and learning.
But while many of us from older generations are still trying to decide whether this is the best or the worst thing to happen to humanity, “Gen Zs are likely wondering why that is something that is still being discussed in the first place,” the Awesomeness TV report states. “After all, they don’t perceive the physical world and the digital world as two separate entities, but rather a cohesive, multidimensional realm in which events transpiring in the digital world are every bit as important — if not more than — what’s happening right in front of them. Smartphones are no longer just a tool, they’ve become digital extensions of one’s self, and some of the most important moments in life are now being lived out online via pocket-sized devices and key platforms: YouTube, Snapchat, Instagram, and Facebook — yes, Facebook.”
Personalizing Counts — For People And Platforms
Much of the research surrounding Gen-Z focuses on the fact that they are “digital natives.” But it is often overlooked that this doesn’t mean they are likely to be swayed by any and all content on their smartphones — quite the opposite. With more information than ever at their finger tips, Gen-Z is poised to become the most informed generation of consumers — and they’re more likely than other generations to flock to brands that create unique content specifically for them.
After all, “they watch 68 videos in a day — meaning this audience has the ability to sort through content faster than ever before,” said Harley Block, SVP of brand partnerships at Awesomeness. “Creating mobile-optimized content that’s platform specific, direct, and entertaining is essential for brands to reach Gen Z.”
Other key takeaways, below:
Strategic Connections Matter: Awesomeness finds that Gen-Z is open to hearing from brands — but in order to reach them on social media, brands must prioritize “extremely relevant content, give great deals, keep content fresh, and respond to their feedback.” Additionally, the influencer effect is real: These consumers are less likely to respond to a overt video ad than to a favorite content creator making a funny video that includes a brand or product. It’s key to provide a platform that empowers existing influencers to authentically use their voice to build a connection between a brand and Gen-Z.
Personalization Wins The Day: This is true across generations, but it’s especially important when it comes to reaching Gen-Z: Whereas Millennials cared deeply about brands being authentic and transparent — they knew of a time before ads infiltrated social — the Awesomeness report finds Gen-Z is less concerned about that. They tend to respond to brands that simply create great content, so long as its “highly relevant, original and entertaining to them.”
Know Thy Platform: Gen-Z’s top apps for news are YouTube, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat — but their top social apps include Aux, YouNow and Fam. Marketers must think about creating content for — and building connections with influencers on — not just the platforms with the highest viewership numbers, but where Gen-Z teens are most natively engaged. This will take some research, and it will take an open mind: If there’s one thing that is true across generations, it’s that the teens are always hanging out somewhere that the “grownups” are not.