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How Gen Z is Influencing Digital Marketing in 2021

Taylor More
Written By
Taylor More
Published On
Sep 09, 2021
A Zoomer recording a video in their closet

Generation Z, those born between 1996 and 2015, has an estimated global buying power of $150 billion. Considering that they make up 32% of the global population, it’s clear why digital marketers are racing to tailor their strategies to this unique generation. 

Marketing to Gen Z starts with understanding the way they think and their core values. They’re the most internet-dependent generation who place a high value on authenticity and inclusivity. Resonating with the Gen Z crowd is tricky — because cancel culture is real. 

In order to successfully reach this target audience, digital marketing is being heavily influenced by their preferences and point of view.  

At The Influence Agency, we’ve rounded up the ways Gen Z is changing the face of digital marketing as we speak —  and what notes you should be taking in order to see eye to eye.

Let’s dive right in! 

More Authentic, Less Scripted

Surveys show that when marketing to Gen Z, authenticity wins. This involves allowing your brand’s personality to shine brightly, leveraging user-generated content (UGC), and acquiring genuine recommendations through reviews and influencer marketing

Let Your Personality Shine

What makes your brand unique? How can you present it in a way that would make people want to socialize with you? What is the story of your company and the people behind it? This is exactly what Gen Z wants to see. 

Don’t Underestimate UGC

Around 35% of Gen Z believe that UGC will have more credibility than company-created content in the next few years. Today, more than 86% of companies have made UGC a part of their marketing strategy. 

UGC can serve as an authentic way to build brand awareness online — which is why it’s a crucial factor when advertising to Gen Z. 

Leverage the Power of Reviews and Influencer Marketing

Reviews and ratings are among the top 5 elements that enable a brand to gain the trust of Gen Z. Therefore, businesses always make it a priority to make sure these reviews and ratings of existing customers are visible to potential customers. 

The fact that 56% of Gen Z are more likely to try a product or service if it is recommended by their favourite online influencer has made a huge impact on digital marketing as well and has caused a huge rise in the popularity of influencer marketing. 

More Activism, Less Neutralism

With 68% of Gen Z expecting brands to contribute to society, the display of activism has risen amongst businesses across the globe. Whether this means putting the spotlight on #ClimateJustice, #Pride, #StopAsianHate, #BlackLivesMatter, or #WomensRights, it has become increasingly important for brands to take a stand on various social issues in order to connect with younger audiences. 

When advertising to Generation Z, amplifying your brand’s ethical and sustainable practices has become a great way to gain consumer trust. In fact, surveys show that 61% of this generation are even willing to pay higher prices for products that are made using ethical and sustainable methods. 

Neutralism is no longer acceptable for this generation. Gen Z expects brands to be involved in activism now more than ever. 

A group of Gen Z-ers rallying for climate justice

More Inclusive, Less Exclusive

Compared to previous generations, Gen Z is the most ethnically and racially diverse one. 

Research indicates the following figures corresponding to the Gen Z population:

  • 52% non-Hispanic white
  • 25% Hispanic 
  • 14% black
  • 6% Asian
  • 5% other races or two or more races 

This is why Generation Z marketing is all about inclusivity. To produce digital marketing content that captures the attention of a diverse group, you have to be diverse. 

Diversity supports diversity. Whether it’s your brand’s social media campaigns or the workplace itself, showing that your brand embraces inclusivity and banishes exclusivity will make reaching Generation Z an easier process. 

The word “inclusion” spelled out in colourful wooden blocks

More Online, Less Offline

The younger generations literally live online and spend an average of 2 hours and 43 minutes on social media — influencing brands to focus so much more energy on digital marketing efforts than ever. 

Snapchat, TikTok, Youtube, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook are the top six social media platforms for Zoomers today. Making sure your brand has an account producing quality content on each of these platforms ups your chances to be perceived as relevant and relatable.  

Maintaining a strong presence on these platforms is vital when advertising to Gen Z because it’s where they constantly search for entertainment and everything in between. Ensuring that your brand is always online increases your chances for visibility and discoverability. 

The Influence of Gen Z

There’s no questioning just how influential Gen Z is. They’ve impacted digital marketing so tremendously, the advertising scene will never be the same again.

Need a team that can successfully help you capture the attention of Zoomers? With the experts at The Influence Agency, marketing to Gen Z will be easier than ever. 

Connect with us today to see just how far our digital marketing strategies can take your brand!


  • Taylor More is the Social Media Coordinator at The Influence Agency. She has a passion for digital marketing and all things creative. Outside of work, she loves travelling, especially when it's somewhere tropical. You can follow her @taylorr.more

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  • Taylor More is the Social Media Coordinator at The Influence Agency. She has a passion for digital marketing and all things creative. Outside of work, she loves travelling, especially when it's somewhere tropical. You can follow her @taylorr.more

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