Marketing to Generation Z

By: Richard Michie

Inspired by a podcast from McKinsey, we wanted to share some thoughts on how you might approach marketing to Generation Z, the demographic currently shifting the consumer market.

Here, we’ll explore Generation Z as a consumer demographic, delving deep into what they expect from the brands and businesses they buy from, and how brands can position themselves to tap into this hugely valuable market.

But who are Generation Z?

Born between 1995 and 2012/15, Gen Z have taken the place of Millennials as the youngest demographic with serious buying power.

Marketing to generation z

Brand Storytelling

Just as “authentic” branding and brand stories were essential to the young demographic before them, Generation Z take the desire for all things “authentic” further, seeking new levels of transparency from the brands they buy from.

It’s a real cultural change across the consumer market space, and brands are rapidly following suit, tearing down the curtain and revealing more than ever before.

No longer enough to “talk the talk”, brands must “do the do”!

With greater access to information about the brands and businesses they buy from, Generation Z want to ensure that brands are aligned with their values before making a purchase.

That’s right! More than just an annually created document, Corporate Responsibility really means something to Gen Z!

The demographic most committed to values-first shopping, they see luxury in a different way. While brand association is still of great importance, Gen Z are less interested in expensive logos, and place more importance on stand-out, unique brands and purchases, avoiding those that may come at an environmental or human cost.

Marketing to generation z

Brand Positioning

With consumers seeking the unique, and with brands striving to provide it, this is the golden era for smaller niche brands. Their time to shine!

As the barriers to market entry in most industries have reduced dramatically over the years, and with access to a wide range of profitable platforms now available to all business, the stage is set for you to create the kind of shopping experience that Gen Z crave!

Carrying out far less routine buying, Gen Z are a discerning bunch who seek variety in their buying practises. Leaving brand loyalty to their Millennial cousins, businesses need to work hard for each and every Gen Z conversion.

Coupled with cancel culture and the social media age, the importance of brand values and transparency adds pressure to businesses to ensure their output, working practises, and all areas of their operations are above scrutiny.

Marketing to generation z

Community & Conversation

In order to deliver the authenticity and transparency expected by Gen Z, businesses are unleashing the power of their marketing teams, encouraging them to be the true voice of the brand, generating discussion and responding to customers in a way never seen before.

Just look at Twitter! For many brands, this platform has become their customer care helpline, with social media execs protecting brand reputations in real-time, responding to complaints and questions as they come in.

However, it’s those brands that create an exciting community, one that consumers actively want to engage in, that have huge success with Gen Z!

By building brand advocates and micro-influencers, who in turn drive Gen Z towards the brand, these communities have an immense impact for the businesses that create them.

For Gen Z, it’s not about the influencers with a gazillion followers, it’s the micro influencers whispering to the few that help to build a genuine connection to a brand.

To truly leverage the opportunities presented by this demographic, brands, businesses, and their marketers must build communities, and turn their authentic voice and engaging conversation into consumer conversion.

These are ever changing waters, which we at The Marketing Optimist can help you navigate. Leave it to us to ensure that your business is seen and heard by your target audience, whoever they may be.


If you’d like to learn more about how The Marketing Optimist team can help your business to be heard above the noise, get in touch to arrange a free marketing consultation.

Interested in speaking to The Optimists?

Right from the beginning of our time working with The Marketing Optimist, they’ve taken the time and effort to get to understand Sharp Consultancy as a business and not just a client. We’ve seen a huge increase in the effectiveness of our social media strategy, particularly on Linkedin and we’re delighted with the impact it’s had on the business.

Jamie Caulfield

Regional Director, Sharp Consultancy

It was a pleasure to work with The Marketing Optimist on this project. It felt like a true collaborative effort on the day and they made the interviewee's feel at ease whilst talking about their journey on our RISE programme. The final video was professional and engaging, we have received great feedback around the quality and creativity of the case study. Including the video in our presentation made it come to life, with real humans sharing their stories, so thank you to the Marketing Optimist!

Hannah Prole

Impact Manager, Better Connect Limited

Case Studies


Marketing for Local Government

Moresby Hall Hotel

Hotel Rebranding

Sharp Consultancy

B2B Social Media for recruitment

The Edit LDN

Managing advanced eCommerce SEO

Better Connect

Digital PR and video production for events

Tango Networks

Marketing support for a global telecoms business

You may also like…

Here comes another Google Core Update

Here comes another Google Core Update

Google Core Updates come in waves. Each time one is announced, the SEO internet goes crazy. Rumours swirl around about how the changes will affect how websites rank. SEO’s on Twitter (sorry X), LinkedIn and now TikTok will begin sharing charts and graphs showing how...

Get to the Point 4th Edition

Get to the Point 4th Edition

While most people are slowing down, The Marketing Optimist are gearing up for 2024. So we are really pleased to announce the 4th Edition of Get to the Point will be held on 19th March Santander Work Cafe, Leeds! If you’ve not come across Get to the Point before, there...

Get to the Point Leeds Digital Festival 2023

Get to the Point Leeds Digital Festival 2023

In our second year of running Get to the Point at Leeds Digital Festival, we decided to step up our game a little and move to the offices of Glean at Leeds Dock. With improved tech and lovely surroundings, we brought nine great speakers to this year's Get to the...

The biggest trend in SEO

The biggest trend in SEO

The future of SEO is always a mystery, and those who try and predict how it’ll change are certain to be proved wrong. Regardless, I’m going to stick my neck out, and hope I’m wrong in my predictions. AI Generated content is going to be the biggest trend in SEO...

When did you last check your website?

When did you last check your website?

When did you last check your website? I bet you haven’t done that in a long time. Don’t look now, you need to read this first. You probably looked at it a lot when it was new and still on your mind. But a few months later you probably stopped checking. It’s normal....

Social Media Marketing Executive Job

Social Media Marketing Executive Job

We’re looking for a Social Media Executive to join The Marketing Optimist. We’re growing fast and we’re looking to add a social media marketer who wants to expand their existing strategic marketing skills on some really interesting and diverse clients. You’ll need to...