We are in the first part of Pennsylvania Free Enterprise Week (PFEW), which is comprised of five one-week programs that teach rising junior and senior high school students about business, free enterprise and working as a team. There are several similar programs in the United States, but PFEW is recognized as the eldest program.
Generation Z, those young adults born in 1995 or later, makes up this program. There has been some research about these young people, but since the infatuation over the Millennial generation is slow to fade, marketers are slow to catch up to these budding capitalists.
If marketers had a tough time adapting to Millennials, look out for the Zers. This group hates to be tracked, is known to have access to as many as five screens at a time when it comes to finding information, is mostly unaware of things around them, is very emotionally driven, and believes the traditional methods of education and the workplace are flawed.
There is a diamond in the rough in this preliminary research — they are so influenced by their peers and activities that they are heavily influenced by the Fear Of Missing Out (FOMO). This can be leveraged by marketers through using third-party endorsements and other messaging indicating that their activities could be even better.
Overall, from a Millennial's standpoint, these kids are both refreshing and frustrating. We love the community drive, yet the "everyone needs a vote" attitude slows progress.
Marketers, we need more information about these folks. Time to leave Millennials alone.
Dwayne W. Waite Jr. is partner and principal at JDW: The Charlotte Agency, a marketing and advertising shop in Charlotte, NC. He enjoys consumer behavior, economics, and football.
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