Gen Z is a big market waiting to be tapped by the right marketing strategies.
If you are now just finally learning how to market and talk to millennials, you might have your work cut out for you with the next generation. Although it’s difficult to define an entire generation by just a handful of characteristics (this millennial is certainly tired of hearing about how lazy our generation is), this hyper-aware, multitasking, and entrepreneurial age group is where marketers should be focusing next.
The biggest focus for Gen Z is technology, with many teens putting tech in the same category as commodities like air and water. If you thought millennials were connected, Gen Z is even more so.
No doubt you already have a tech marketing strategy, but it’s time to amp it up. Let’s take a look at how Hollywood is marketing to Generation Z for some ideas for your own business.
Social media is king for advertising and marketing today, and Gen Z willingly participates. Even mom and pop shops with little to no internet presence often have at least a website and a Facebook page.
Frankly, Hollywood is killing it on most of the main platforms. From custom Twitter emojis for the release of blockbusters like Captain America: Civil War, Star Wars: The Force Awakens and even the broadcast of the 2017 Emmys, to Ryan Reynolds’ increasingly hilarious Deadpool videos (check out How Deadpool Spent Halloween) movies and television shows today rely not on a strong social media following, but a rampant one.
One of my favorite marketing campaigns was for the highly anticipated return of X-Files, a cult favorite TV show. Not only did they “crash-land” a UFO in the middle of The Grove in LA, but the genius marketing team posted scrambled tweets and Snapped secret messages to get its fan based pumped for the revival.
Instead, host live Facebook or Twitter events. Giveaway contests always strike a good cord and bump engagement with Gen Z and your other followers. The right hashtag, too, can get your followers talking about your brand with others in the marketplace. Interaction with your followers—whether you have a hundred or a million—is key to keeping your brand topical.
Donating to a Good Cause
Plenty of celebrities have charities they donate time and money to. Others have founded companies that are doing good work for the environment and communities in need. Hollywood has capitalized on the gamification of donating to charity to promote not only your favorite movie stars, but great causes too.
With the tagline “Good things come to those who give,” Omaze combines unique dream fan experiences with raising money for charities.
Want the chance of a lifetime on a set of the new Star Wars movie? Make a donation in support of UNICEF and Starlight Children’s Foundation for a chance to win. Big fan of Bear Grylls? Throw a couple bucks to the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity for the potential to grab a bite to eat with your favorite survivalist.
Corporate social responsibility strategies are a great way to interact with your customers and followers of your brand, as well as do good.
Your gamification model may not be able to offer an overnight stay at Skywalker Ranch and a private screening, but it can get more people interested and invested in your brand. Offer branded products, one-time free services, or something similar in return for donations to an organization or charity your company supports.
Hollywood’s use of VR experiences hit a peak at 2016’s San Diego Comic Con. The huge fan convention saw virtual reality installations from major movies like Suicide Squad and X-Men Apocalypse and hit shows like Mr. Robot and The Man in the High Castle.
Fans and curious newbies to these properties were able to dive deeper than ever before into their favorite fictional universes. And while VR almost seemed to be a normal technology with how readily available it was at this event, it was there for a specific purpose.
“Suicide Squad didn’t partner with Samsung, build out a massive [VR] installation, and open a fake tattoo bar at Comic-Con just to be awesome; those things were all done to help sell a movie,” said Bryan Bishop of The Verge. “It may be fun, and there may be swag, but marketing is marketing all the same.”
Look to car manufacturers like Ford for more applicable uses of VR to market and sell your products. Ikea, Marriott, Lowe’s, and even McDonald’s utilize the technology to communicate the mission of the brand, demonstrate product attributes, and help consumers make more informed choices.
These marketing methods, when in the limelight of Hollywood, are far more grandiose than what most companies want to do. But these tech strategies, when scaled to the size of your business, can definitely catch the eye of the younger generations.