Born Digital: connecting with GenZ in a multi-channel world

by Wardour – Mar 01, 2019

We’ve been asked a lot recently by companies about how to reach the GenZ audience. Is it only through social media? Do they care about print anymore?

We were curious. So we set about including questions about this demographic – 18-24 – in our recent Rethink Ink research. Our starting point was what we thought we knew about this audience – the obvious points are below:

But our research unearthed some surprising findings about this digital-first audience. They might like digital, but they also like print:

Most surprising of all, there was a warmth towards the kinaesthetic – some 53% of those polled said they like the smell of print.

What’s clear from these findings is that GenZ likes to get its information from everywhere. And that means brands need to work harder to connect and engage with them.

Here are some practical considerations:

  1. Trust - In a world of content overload, print content has been proven to provide quality and reassurance. Brands such as Amazon and Facebook have embraced print alongside digital to connect with GenZ consumers. A channel-agnostic approach should be a given.

  2. Visual - Traditional written content won’t always work for GenZ. Brands need to embrace technology and a wide range of story-telling vehicles. Visual marketing is the name of the game here and will stand out for an audience with a limited attention span. Animated graphics, live video, visual storytelling… Bring it alive and make it relevant. This can work across digital and social channels, but needs to be tailored.

  3. Authenticity - GenZ wants to give back and values local social impact. Can your brand weave this into different aspects of internal and external communication, providing proof points along the way?

  4. Working Environment - More fluid career paths, holistic job satisfaction, and integrating employee wellbeing with success all appeal to a generation that is entering the workplace under pressure, yet showing fewer signs of materialism. Companies should be thinking about how they interpret this into their employer brand, with their own mission and values.

  5. Global Themes - Promote uplifting and positive global messages to resonate with GenZ, such as how your company or brand can make the world a better place. We’ve already seen corporate reporting start to encourage this with the inclusion of purpose in key communications. Social media campaigns are also picking this up.

If you’d like to find out more about Rethink Ink and the reading habits of GenZ, please get in touch at

Published Mar 01, 2019

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​Content Director Tim Turner helps our clients reach the heights of success with their content but he’s no stranger to reaching heights himself, albeit of a different type.

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