For the first time in consumer culture, we’re seeing the emergence of a generation that is not defined purely by an age bracket, but rather, a different set of characteristics. The term “Gen C” refers to a state of mind. It’s used to describe people who care deeply about creation, curation, connection and community. Members of Gen C are commonly referred to as the “Connected Consumer’ as they rely on technology as part of their daily routines and are incredibly technologically savvy. Literally 91% of Gen C sleep with their phone next to them. They can’t be defined by age, because they literally could be anyone.
Over the last number of years, we’ve been so concerned with marketing to Millennials, but the reality is, we’ve been missing a huge pool of individuals. It’s time to move on from marketing to millennials, and figure out how to start marketing to these new leading consumers.
So what does Gen C care about? And as a marketer, what’s the best way to get through to this generation?
1. Forget about traditional marketing options
Gen C is all about 21st century technology so you won’t be able to reach them using old school traditional media. Sorry to break it to you, but you also won’t be able to get ahold of them using standard digital marketing methods like digital ads either. Why? Because this generation already has all the ad blockers installed, and they’re not interested in your pop-ups. Nor do they believe them. You almost need to play a little hard to get with this generation. They don’t want to be force fed anything and they definitely don’t enjoy landing on a page and having brands jump down their throats. So the question remains, how do you market to them? Well, the answer is pretty simple - social media. But not just any kind of social media. They’re not interested in any old Instagram or Facebook page. They want to engage with content that they want to click on and share. Entertaining, highly visual, exciting content is how you’re going to maximise your engagement with this generation and get them on board with your brand.
2. Pay attention to Youtube
Youtube is Gen C’s habitat for entertainment. It’s been noted that this generation are twice as likely to be a Youtube viewer than the general population and they’re 40% more likely to only be a light TV viewer. Research has also shown that year on year, the number of Gen Cs watching Youtube on their smartphones has increased by 74%. This is something almost every business should be taking note of. As such, figuring out how to get your content in front of the right people as organically as possible on this platform is going to be big for your brand.
3. Consider the peer review
Gen C talk. A lot. In particular, they are always consulting their peers for advice, opinions and ultimately, decisions. 85% of Gen C rely on peer approvals for buying decisions. For this generation, it takes a lot to get them over the line if they don’t have the green light from their peers or have received positive reviews about what their pondering over. Something that helps with that peer review is the type of communication a brand has with Gen C. This is a generation that wants to feel like they’re being spoken to directly. Instead of one-to-many, they prefer one-to-few communication. They don’t just want to be spoken to like everyone else, and thurs, they respond well to being under the impression that a brand’s marketing efforts and being specifically catered to them and their wants / needs.
4. Be genuine
Gen C values conversations and interactions that are aligned with their own interests. Therefore, you’re really only in with a chance with this generation if you’re producing content that they believe to be genuine, and applicable to them. 39% of Gen C aren’t opposed to ads when they’re relevant to them. But on top of that, you need to make sure that your content is original and engaging. Understand who you’re communicating to, make sure your content is relatable and then make sure you’re using language that communicates as if you’re speaking directly to your consumer.
To conclude, in order to market to Gen C effectively, you need to have a vast understanding of who you're talking to. Rather than drilling down into age, and characteristics about that demographic, you need to be thinking bigger. You need to be thinking about values, platforms and forms of communication. The tips discussed in this blog should give you enough of an understanding about this Generation to go blaway and think about how you can incorporate some of these learnings into your current marketing strategies and set yourself up for the future of Gen C.