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The changed world of Gen Z

News, 12 August 2016

LONDON: Voting patterns in the recent EU referendum and the popularity of Pokémon Go have highlighted some important ways in which Generation Z differs from older age groups and how they experience life.

At a recent London event, futures consultancy Trajectory observed that the UK's post-millennial age group is growing up in a changed world – gay marriage is accepted, recession is normal, many won't remember a time when there wasn't a black US president. (Read the full report here: Engaging Generation Z.)

These are generation-defining events, to which may be added the Brexit vote. Two thirds of those over 65 voted to leave the EU, pointed out Georgiana Murariu, senior analyst at Trajectory, while one third of 18-24 year olds were crying – or felt like crying – when the result came in.

And that divergent generational outlook politically is only likely to be exaggerated by the younger generation's uncertain financial prospects and rising house prices which will leave many unable to afford to buy their own home.

That in turn will mean that traditional markers of adulthood, like moving out of home and starting a family, will be postponed.

And as the first generation of truly digital natives – they won't recall a time when homes didn't have computers or people couldn't go online using their phones – other aspects of Gen Z lives will be very different to what has gone before.

Pokémon Go, for example, shows the blurring of the boundaries between their online and offline lives, which has massive implications for how leisure time is spent.

Already Gen Z has an appetite for video streaming that has alarmed traditional media owners, while the eSports category has quietly become huge and will continue to grow in popularity among this group.

Health and education are other areas where Trajectory expected different trends to emerge that marketers will need to be aware of.

A recently published Warc Best Practice paper offers advice on How to market effectively to Centennials.

Data sourced from Warc