Founder and CEO of JSA strategiesa strategic communications company that partners with consumer technology, digital media and gaming companies.
Nowadays, when you ask a question, you often get the answer “Oh, just TikTok it.” Much bigger than the origin of the dance video, a lot now get their news and other information from social media app.
It’s no secret that we live in a time when social media is an essential part of our daily lives. But with the rapidly changing behavior of today’s consumers, brands and companies are racing to outlets that serve the next generation of tastemakers: Gen Z. However, Gen Z is different from all previous generations of consumers for reasons that often fail many established companies. the dark on how to reach them.
It’s no longer about the hottest influencers and celebrities posting your product; it’s about the voice of your brand. Gen Z is known as the most pronounced generation, and it’s much easier to get their attention than you think. Here are three ways to mold an authentic brand voice and resonate effectively with this generation.
1. Show passion
Communicating the driving force behind your business can help you build a true community of people who share your company’s values and beliefs. A strong sense of who you are as a brand helps form the strongest bond you can have with your customer base and has the potential to build a relationship that can withstand even the slowest business seasons. Trends come and go, but what you show about your brand every day – whether it’s the personality of your employees or the social issues your brand represents – allows you to connect with your community in the most powerful way. deepen.
The most effective method of expressing your brand voice is to identify the white space in your industry and communicate what your brand is doing to fill this void. Larger companies have historically monopolized digital media to promote what they considered important or standard for the industry, while ignoring what consumers actually wanted to see as customers.
Newer and more niche brands are discovering that by delivering exactly what your audience wants, they will appreciate and trust your brand. When your company’s voice speaks to the exact needs of your consumers, you inevitably gain their respect.
2. Practice authentic corporate social responsibility (CSR).
Using your company’s influence and widespread reach to support a timely goal and demonstrate impactful CSR efforts says a lot about your brand’s ethos. Gen Z is unlike any other audience we’ve encountered before, in that brand loyalty is no longer passed down through their parents or upbringing. Instead, it is constantly earned by what a company does to show its point of view on real issues or current events.
When you share your CSR efforts with consumers, it should be an authentic expression of concern about an issue that aligns with your brand’s mission and industry. For example, a vegan makeup brand would have to make philanthropic efforts that counter animal testing or by planting trees or vegetable crops in unexplored areas. These relevant service acts recognize that your company genuinely cares about issues that your products or services are actively working on.
Sharing your reason for supporting a cause is more powerful than jumping on the latest trends, and Gen Z as a whole will take note. If you take an authentic stance on why your company is passionate about a cause, your community will grow organically and exponentially.
3. Aim for the ‘real’, not the ‘perfect’.
The usual consensus around brand image is to present your product or service as curated, sleek and polished. However, Gen Z has proven to be able to look past the flashing eyes you show and listen carefully to what you say. Your brand voice should show empathy when empathy is needed, as well as excitement, optimism, and genuine feelings that can reflect what’s going on in the company, industry, or the world at large. While it’s important to stay true to your company’s brand image, this generation of consumers isn’t impressed with the glitz and glamor – they want what’s real.
Don’t base your company’s messages on ever-changing trends or on what you think Gen Z wants to hear. It’s not about having “swag” (which by the way doesn’t exist) or just using funny memes to interact with them. Having a relevant brand voice means embracing the raw and unfiltered, yet professional voice that your target audience can relate to.
As a whole, Gen Z has little brand loyalty across generations, instead prioritizing what appeals to them and their values. If not anymore, they often have no problem finding a replacement. Building a true brand voice and contributing to causes that demonstrate an altruistic outlook will inevitably instill a sense of loyalty to Gen Z and help you continue to grow with this pioneering generation.