The newest wave of 18- to 20-year-olds strive to be a part of the online market’s “bigger picture.”
Gen Zers, also known as the digital natives and post-millennials, are eager early adopters and the first out the gate when it comes to new gadgets and platforms.
Therefore, to best engage digital natives, your company’s content must reflect and satiate their desire to interact with, and deeply understand, your brand or product.
Honing content to accompany the Gen Z user funnel takes more than just well-written words.
To truly benefit the young buyer, brands must direct their attention to the customer journey and each distinct touchpoint across their funnel.
Here are the five tried-and-true tactics for mapping your brand’s content journey to fit Gen Z.
Tell Your Brand’s Story
Sixty-seven percent of Gen Z prefers narratives and storytelling, meaning your brand’s narrative should be woven into your company’s dialogue. Narrative-based marketing, if done authentically, can be a powerful tool for driving loyalty, engagement, and long-term retention.
To tell your brand’s story, you must know it first. Hence journey mapping—the key platform for learning the ins and outs of your authentic story and composing it chronologically.
Journey mapping offers marketers the tools to use their personality to storytell in a concise and approachable manner.
GoPro is a perfect example of a company that has structured their story around their customer journey. The short film titled, Nick Woodman’s Journey: Dead End to GoPro, is a brief and inspiring snippet into the history of the hugely successful camera brand and the man behind the revolutionary invention. The video opens with a snowboarder trekking up a massive snowy peak, with CEO Nick Woodman narrating as the anecdote moves from his initial failure as an entrepreneur, into the present and future plans for the action camera brand.
Be Mobile Friendly
Forty-five percent of teens say they use their mobile devices to compare prices while shopping, 44 percent read reviews online, and 33 percent use mobile devices to purchase products (Refuel Agency).
In other words, digital natives don’t just network online, their devices are in built into their DNA.
When targeting Gen Z, the most important detail is that your design and copy is mobile friendly for Gen Z.
This point becomes especially pertinent if you are advertising yourself online, as your funnel will likely lead users from scrolling, to clicking, to buying. If your mobile platform isn’t flawless, your company will feel it.
Buzzfeed is one example of a company with a wonderfully friendly mobile experience. Their mobile site consistently keeps users on their site for hours at a time.
To master a truly seamless customer journey, mobile designers should be constantly prowling for dead links and checking that the entire flow, whether it’s leading to more content or a checkout page, is consistent and smooth.
Don’t Bore with Details
By and large Gen Z is tech-fluent. Thus, there is no need to break down every minute detail of your product for this savvy cohort as you would for pre-millennials.
If Gen Z is your target audience, less is more when it comes to content. In fact, with digital built into their DNA, approaching post-millennials with too much information may bore or frustrate them. You also run the risk of looking ameteur or outdated yourself.
Gen Z is famous for being hands on learners when it comes to technology. If you want digital natives to engage with your product, don’t offer them lists or instruction manuals. Rather, provide them with a concise and interactive explanation of your product or ask them to try your unit for themselves.
Keep in mind that details can be a beautiful thing if used wisely.
Gen Z spends more time online looking for quality content than they do social networking (Refuel Agency). Therefore, your long-winded content will reach its full potential on your blog or as a guest post while your short and edible content should be highlighted, using strategic and tested UX, on your company’s website.
In the past, advertisers focused more on emotion than technology when marketing products or services. It has long been believed that the feeling of using a product sold more than the product itself.
Today, however, brands are more transparent than ever when advertising their gadgets and widgets. Gen Z likely knows more than you think, so be direct to help your young customers become experts. Everything from contributor content, blog posts, to banner ads, are taking a turn for the technological. Technology driven content should offer your readership insights into what your platform does differently than others.
Simply by adding a “How it Works” tab in your website’s navigation, you can increase the authority of your most marketable features and intentionally focus on details and features that define your brand.
Illustrating your platform’s functions using interactive content and images is a great way of reaching young audiences with actionable data while engaging and offering clarity. The more Gen Z understands, the more they trust your company’s ability to support their needs.
Make Video a Priority
Last, but not least, make your content move. This is the most crucial piece of advice for any company targeting Gen Z.
In a survey by Animoto, 96 percent of customers said they find video helpful when making purchase decisions online, and 73 percent said they are more likely to purchase a product after watching a video.
Once you have a clear mind on your customer’s journey, be sure to create content that flows accordingly. Telling your story through video (see tip #1) is just one facet of having content that follows your customer throughout their online journey and each customers across your main touch points. As your customer progresses through your service funnel, your video content should act as a guide, offering bits of edible information to clarify and engage your customer.
There are a number of benefits gained by creating video content that flows seamlessly, such as inspiring action, establishing loyalty, and offering information. Often, when a customer lingers on a brand’s content, they are looking for something specific, be it clarification or convincing.
Video has the power to provide your clientele with clear and fun-to-use breadcrumbs along your customer journey.
Final Musings About Gen Z
The beautiful thing about journey mapping your way to masterfully curated content is the payoffs can be massive and ongoing.
Having a content-centric approach to your Gen Z audience has more power than you can ever know. With the share button and the big five social networks, your name has the potential to be spread far and wide in the online sphere.
However, to create the kind of content that turns users into customers, customers into long-term buyers, and loyal buyers into brand ambassadors, you must understand how your audience interacts online and how your company can offer them engaging content and actionable information to optimize their online experience.
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