We probably could have anticipated it. Social media is losing its allure for so-called Generation Z, those born in the mid-1990s or later. Sure, they’re still posting, mostly to Facebook and Instagram, but 41% of this generation feel they’re wasting too much time on it.
Implications for Marketers
Social media was like a shiny new toy when Facebook first disrupted our lives. But the newest generation of consumers feels it has better things to do than be on social media 24/7.
Marketers take note: By 2020, it is expected that 40% of consumers will be Gen Z.
The study found that Gen Z social media users expressed these reasons for considering quitting social media:
- 41% wasting too much time on it
- 35% there was too much negativity
- 31% not using it very often
- 26% not interested in the content
- 22% wanted more privacy
- 18% too much pressure to get attention
- 18% too much commercialized
- 17% made me feel bad about myself
Gen Z young people feel pressured by having to always be active on social media. From the study:
A Change in the Media Landscape
It’s not that Gen Z aren’t on social media. More than 90% of them are getting their content from social media, vs. 29% from traditional TV. So wise marketers will shift their media spend to social media. It’s just that Gen Z is not tethered to it like the generations that preceded them.
Gen Z social media shoppers report that Facebook (61%) and Instagram (47%) are the most popular platforms on which to find new products. They also report that paid advertising and brand content are the most common ways they come across products of interest. The study found that Gen Z consumers want to see themselves represented in branded social media content.
They have come to expect that the brands they buy from reflect their style, personality, and life-stage, and social media content must do the same. Because more than half of Gen Z social media users have taken a temporary break from social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram, brands will need to deliver content across multiple platforms to achieve reach and frequency.
Most important, according to the study, today’s approach to social media is about engagement and conversation, in targeted one-to-one campaigns.
That means if you’re a brand manager, you need to stop telling these young Gen Z consumers what they want. Instead, start a dialogue and learn what’s important to them and tailor your messages and products accordingly.
It’s a new generation out there and they’ll buy into your brand if you buy into their needs and their way of looking at the world.