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June 17th, 2022

How brands can virtually connect to Gen Z

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Thinking about ways your brand can effectively reach Gen Z? YouTube, Snapchat, and Instagram may be the usual suspects you think of. But these digital platforms aren’t the only ones smashing it when it comes to building relationships with younger audiences…

To get started, let’s outline a few insights worth knowing about Gen Z:

  • Gen Z predominantly view social media as a source of entertainment; they see it as ‘a place to relieve themselves of boredom’.

  • They’re also starting to migrate from general social media networks like Facebook and Instagram due to privacy concerns and adopting more private platforms to share content. “Dark social” networks are seeing users share content via encrypted channels like Telegram. The latest app craze amongst Gen Z is BeReal, an app that users are obsessed with for its authenticity. This group is highly versed in established interest-based social media / community platforms such as TikTok, Twitch, Reddit and Fortnite – which we explain below…

  • Gaming platforms are also filling in the gaps for social experiences and have become more like social networks in their own right.

It’s time for brands to SWITCH IT UP…

Many platforms like Twitch and Discord have grown a long way from being purely gaming and now have thriving communities that brands can use to their advantage. Platforms just like these serve and create many fandoms, offering great engagement opportunities for brands. Here are just a few…

Twitch

Twitch is a real-time live streaming platform that allows creators to communicate with their audience. Video game fans are the site’s primary audience, but with a growing global community, content also includes entertainment, music, and sports for audiences to watch, interact and engage. It’s the ultimate influencer marketing-based service. It’s like the future of live TV – where brands can enhance and associate with specific interest groups through advertising and influencer-sponsored content.

Discord

Discord was once a game platform but has now become a comprehensive communication app. The platform is powered by servers, which are community groups that support video, audio, and text chat. Discord is perfect for helping brands engage with the latest trends. Building relationships with loyal communities for the next generation of social engagement.

TikTok

Musical.ly, a lip-syncing app, combined with TikTok, a comparable one-year-old app, in 2018. It is presently more popular in app stores than other well-known social networking networks, with a predicted 1.5 billion users in 2022. TikTok allows for both paid and influencer campaigns on its app, with the primary focus being to entertain audiences with frequent, discoverable, and relevant content that follows the latest trends.

Telegram

Messaging service, Telegram, aims to become a one-stop marketing solution for brands. With about 660 million users worldwide, it’s growing fast to become a high-engagement platform that brands can leverage to target niche audiences by creating interest-based communities. Starting a Telegram channel boosts brand community and allows you to broadcast messages to a large audience. This way you can keep your target audience informed quickly with notifications that you can share through other interest channels.

Reddit

Reddit is a social news and discussion website ranking content by popularity. It’s essentially a community site where people dive into the topics most relevant to them. Reddit regularly influences purchase decisions as people often come to Reddit to be informed about something they are researching. They trust the opinions here, making it perfect for product and brand recommendations. Advertising through Reddit is also available to specific interest groups.

Fortnite

Playing to socialise. Games like Fortnite, Roblox, and Minecraft are brilliant for interactive brand experiences. It’s time to start thinking differently about what social platforms are. Fortnite, with 350 million active players, has seen brands from Wendy’s to Adidas create world maps, promotions, and avatar branded wearables. Fortnite’s Creative Mode allows creators & brands the ability to build fun bespoke social gaming experiences you can share via island codes.

Horizon Worlds

Horizon Worlds is a VR social experience accessed by VR headsets and built by Meta (Facebook). Creators and brands can build interactive social experiences. Whilst visitors can play, buy, sell, engage, and explore custom worlds. Currently in BETA in the U.S. and Canada to 18+ users, Horizon Worlds is the next generation of online social experiences. It will make social more engaging and immersive than ever with the ability to use free tools to create without limits. From showrooms and stores to advertising, Horizon Worlds will be perfect for businesses and brands, big and small.

ZEPETO

ZEPETO is a social app where you can create an avatar, buy apparel, and explore 3D worlds from your phone. With 300 million users all over the world, personalisation and self-expression are important in this social playground. ZEPETO is perfect for brand stories and building loyalty with unique assets and spaces.

These are just a few of the latest platforms that brands can use to their advantage to specifically target the Gen Z audience.

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