We as a generation are striving to improve ourselves, our society, and the world. This is reflected in everything that this generation does and is only amplified by the tools that we have in our possession: the internet and social media. So how is Gen Z going about improving themselves and the world around them?
The Five Core Needs of Gen Z
Community, Experiences, Passion & Purpose, Change, Connection
Community is an essential part of the different cultures around the world, but it is even more important to a generation that grew up with social media. We are constantly connected to people and information through just the touch of a button, social media has been made to feel omnipresent. Therefore, we are able to find solace on the internet to seek advice, cope, and make friends. Social media has become our form of community, and this has only become further accentuated by the global pandemic of 2020. This form of community has been amplified through platforms such as Slack, Reddit, and Twitter, to name a few. There is a need for these tools within GenZ, a craving for the community that comes along with them, but also a feeling that without these platforms a part of our identity would be lost - a sense of, “who am I, if not my social media presence?”. This need is the reason why so many smaller niche communities have been formed because we now have the online space for people to comfortably embrace who they are in spaces that would not have otherwise been born in real life.
Our generation constantly seeks experiences more than material possessions such as gold or buying houses. We know what happens in life matters more than what we own, and we, therefore, always look to spend our money on experiences such as travel, dining, concerts, and meaningful relationships. We use tools such as Snapchat and Instagram to express these experiences because we want others to experience the same things that we are. This ideology can be extended to our relationship with brands and products as well. We seek these same experiences while using products, and therefore, we love brands and products that have a pleasant user experience or a relatable story that evokes emotions based on the user experience.
PASSION & PURPOSE
We believe that everything that we pursue in life should have a meaning to it that is more than just the traditional idea of following a linear path in life. People are redefining what career and what success mean to them. We are realizing that long term fulfillment and pursuing our passions is more important than a title, position, or the corner office. With the rise of the passion economy, many tools such as Youtube, Soundcloud, Only fans, TikTok, Substack, Anchor, and Patreon and more have completely changed the way we earn. Our livelihood can now completely be sustained through our passions because scalable technology platforms have now made it possible to reach large audiences and monetize our own individuality.
We as a generation, like to stand up for and express our opinions on anything that goes against human principals, equality, moral rights and anything that we just don’t think is right. We won’t just argue against what we find morally conflicting and express our opinions, we want to change and we now have the means to make change happen through social media where we reach millions of people through content and the virality effects of it. The recent events spurring out of the Black Lives Matter movement this year, have clearly shown how much change can be brought about by exposing injustice, getting people to rally for a cause, and not giving up until we are able to make a defining change. We were literally able to raise tens of thousands of dollars through social media and rally the government to change the laws for good. More and more platforms will need to integrate features and services to help, donate, and support causes that we care about and need to change because it's about damn time they do.
We like to express ourselves as who we are and be accepted for who we are. We express our passions, our lows, intimate moments, relatable everyday mishaps because that's what connects us more because that's what makes us human. This has given rise to the relatable culture, where we are more likely to like, share, or buy something if it is relatable. We have realized that everyone is human at the end of the day and it's much easier to build community and relationships if we share our lives unfiltered with those we love. This has been apparent in the recent viral trends on platforms such as TikTok and Youtube where creators have amassed millions of followers by being relatable and real. Memes and emojis are another examples of this trend wherein everyday communication, even in business communication, people prefer these relatable means to express how they feel. We as a generation, with constant access to so much information, all at once can validate almost any claim in a matter of seconds - we can set apart real news from fake news, genuine people from try-hards, authentic brands from money-making machines, and “salesy” advertisements from genuine content. This gives us the power to decide if a content, brand, or person is authentic, relatable, or real and filter out the ones that are not true to what they say or sell.
The world is changing swiftly and a new generation is coming into buying power. Only through a deep understanding of Gen Z will brands be able to successfully sell and deliver content to this generation of consumers.
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We are two Gen Z techies demystifying the changing consumer commerce economy . The future of consumer experiences, buying, selling and sharing is ripe for a transformational shift ⚡.
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