Gen Z Appeal

The Lempert Report
April 27, 2023

We've talked a lot about Generation Z over the past few years. The importance of this group of people that are born between 1977 and the year 2012 last week at the RDBA Virtual Experience. We spoke a lot about Generation Z, how they've shaped more than any other with the digital age, climate, anxiety, concern, global unrest, wars, financial insecurity, student loans, and of course, the educational disruptions due to Covid 19. McKenzie surveyed Generation Z and found them to have the least positive attitude and outlook and the highest percentage of mental illness of any generation. Sally, what are we gonna do to help this generation? 

Sally: Well, Phil, yes they are. They are born between 1997 and 2012. So they are aged 11 to 25. So some of them are in middle school, and then we have some that are a part of the workforce now and maybe even starting families. But this generation, they are deeply affected by influencers and social media and digital marketing. And so we have to think a little bit differently about how we market to them. And then they also are influenced by an economic crisis that started in 2008 with our financial crisis and now with the cost of living being unstable right now. So, we're looking at a new way of marketing to them. And what we're hearing is that 90% of Gen Z are influenced by influencers. So it's very important for these brands to think about who is representing their products out there. But the problem we're running into is that not a lot of healthy foods when it comes to food healthy foods and foods with a higher nutritional profile are making their way through all of this digital marketing. 

Phil: And also to throw out another stat, 60% of the 1 billion users who are in TikTok, according to McKinsey, again, are generation Z. So if in fact, what we want to have is we want to have good, healthy foods by this generation what they really need to do is focus on how to market and how to talk to them. And I think that there are some groups that do that certainly here in Southern California. Erewhon, as a supermarket chain, is doing it really well. But I haven't seen a lot of brand advertising. And we're gonna talk a bit more about brand advertising in a little bit. But that's really doing it well. There's this one product called Liquid Death. It's a water product, and they use cans with imagery of heavy metal music on it. And the reason that they came out with this product is they had the people from Monster energy drink, and they found the teens were walking around with cans of Monster after they finished the energy drink and had water in it because the can looked cool. It was just simple as that, they said.

Sally: Yes. We are hearing that a more playful style of marketing is good for this audience that they appreciate authenticity and they also appreciate a sense of purpose. So I mean, with that, when you talk about that, can I think about the metal music and the influence of that, and it looks cool, but I also wonder, Phil, since this is a generation that is more concerned about the planet and social issues that maybe they're just putting water in it to reuse that can.

Phil: That's excellent point, excellent point.