Gen Z: 5 marketing insights for 2023

Gen Z is taking over by storm. Born between 1997 and 2010, the post millennial demographic known as Gen Z or Generation Z will be between the ages of 13 and 26 in 2023. At school, at university or on their first jobs, this generation influences their parent's spending habits and will have increasing spending power of their own in the years to come. Here are 5 insights to help you include them in your marketing strategy.

1. The elusive generation

Having grown up with access to the internet and technology from an early age, Gen Zers are the first true digital natives. They are highly connected, spend a significant amount of time online and often use multiple devices on a daily basis.  At the same time we call them “the elusive generation” because they are difficult to engage with or reach through traditional marketing and communication methods. They are savvy about avoiding or ignoring traditional forms of advertising.

On top of that, Gen Z is known for being more diverse, independent, and politically and socially conscious than previous generations, which makes them harder to define or characterize as a group.

As Gen Z is highly active on social media platforms, it doesn’t hurt to have a strong presence on these channels. Tiktok, Snapchat and Instagram are the way to go. Consider influencer marketing to reach this demographic, as Gen Zers often look to their peers for recommendations. They want to make their own decision about whether or not to buy something. Influencer marketing offers a great middle ground where both pros and cons are pointed out, allowing Gen Zers to make up their own mind.

2. Authenticity and transparency 

The purchasing decision process of Gen Z isn’t only about customer experience. It’s also about corporate values. Young consumers have higher expectations of companies and are aware of the power they hold. They feel companies should stand for more than just their own financial interests. How do you treat your employees? Do you act against ethnic and economic inequality? Are you involved in your community and do you fight climate change?

Showing how your company takes on social responsibility and plays a role in society can be an opportunity to connect with Generation Z. It is vital to establish your brand’s mission and values and communicate them effectively.

3. Economic awareness

The economic pressures that took place during their childhood - when their parents and community may have struggled with work and finances - have left a mark on Generation Z. Did you know that the Belgian Gen Zers are world champions in savings? Consequently, the most successful marketing towards Gen Z emphasizes long-term value and smart investments.

4. Personality is key 

Want to connect with Gen Z? Time to say goodbye to your millennial-focused aesthetic of perfectly curated content. Gen Z wants brands with personality. Bold and strongly voiced..

Gen Z aspires to be independent and choose their own path. They don’t want to be defined by a brand different from themselves. Instead, they prefer to maintain their independence and use social media platforms like TikTok to find and join communities that share their values and interests. To effectively market to this generation, it is important to celebrate individuality and encourage people to be themselves. Avoid appearing preachy or overly prescriptive in your messaging.

We see this also being translated into a lot of user generated content on social media platforms. Where brands who are able to promote their products in a light-hearted and silly way have often seen massive success.

5. Video Video Video 

When it comes to their socials 81% of Gen Z says that Instagram and YouTube are their preferred social networks. With Snapchat providing them with the strongest sense of

Consider creating short content like TikToks, Instagram Reels and Stories, as Gen Z has a clear preference for short-form video content.  This content should be personal, immersive,  relatable and worth sharing.

So in conclusion: make your content for Gen Z personalized. Emphasize the impact you and your audience can have on the bigger picture. And show the personality of your brand through video content.