Generation Z Marketing is different from marketing to Millennials.
Generation Z marketing may not even require the “old” hashtag #socialmedia anymore…
For older Millennials and certainly Gen Xers, “social media” helps people think about and talk about things like Twitter, Instagram, Vine, Facebook, Snapchat, SelfieYo, etc. (the list goes on and is evolving as new platforms come to market around the world). But Gen Z seems to have a more innate, more “born” sense of social platforms. Gen Z and most Millennials are all mobile, all the time. Making the distinction is like offering roasted nuts in water instead of lemon or lime; it just doesn’t make sense.
At SelfieYo, we notice that there are some commonalities between today’s teenage #socialmedia selfie superstars and the global selfie trend that isn’t going away anytime soon. Today’s social, selfie superstars bring an unvarnished authenticity to their work that screams genuine passion. It’s not usually Hollywood quality or advertising agency-driven work, but it doesn’t seem to matter because the numbers show that audiences are not complaining about newly minted stars not having studio quality lighting or million dollar production budgets. In fact, armed with some basic tools and a lot of talent, these kids are outmaneuvering dozens of top brand marketing agencies when it comes to delivering real engagement results. The platforms seem to matter less and less; the talent surfaces wherever the talent pleases.
Here are a few Generation Z Marketing performers who have A-Level selfie game, huge audiences and will most likely influence big brand marketers in the coming years:
Lele Pons – 4.7 million followers on Vine, over 2.2 billion loops. Lele’s work is nothing less than top quality, consistent and pretty damn funny. Her satirical approach to videos shows life through the lens of a teenage girl in Miami, Florida. She’s been covered by TeenVogue, Perez Hilton and even the marketing magazine, AdWeek. This author thinks Lele has a very bright future in entertainment.
Jack and Jack – Jack Johnson and Jack Gilinsky have been buddies since kindergarten and they now have millions of followers on Twitter, Instagram and Vine. Like Lele, they’re first-class Generation Z comedians. They’re potentially masterminds of a commercial right, too. They’ve got a top song available for purchase on iTunes, they sell phone cases with their faces and they’re making for-profit movies. The movies aren’t what you’d see from Paramount Pictures or Miramax Films, but maybe their style is something we can all learn from.
Princess Lauren – With about 415K Twitter followers, 3 million on Vine and about half-a-million Instagram followers, Princess Lauren’s in-camera selfie-style videos are attracting millions and millions of views. She likes refrigerators more than she likes a lot of people because they have a “selfie lighting cam” built-in. Lauren’s style is distinctly different from the Jacks and Lele; she’s more of a solo artist, although she does like the occasional comedic, irreverent cameo of strangers. Lauren is funny and we think she’s going to hone her craft well in the coming years.
There’s a pretty long tail of teenage social superstars and we expect it will keep growing. Even though many (or most) of the photos and videos appear with a lot of artistic shaping, there’s no denying an underlying authenticity to the visual content that goes around the world in seconds. The level of emotional engagement captured through mobile cameras and platform tickers is worth keeping an eye on. We’ll be reporting more insights soon!