As mentioned in previous articles, the Millennials or the Generation Y or digital natives are those born between 1982 and 1994 and technology is a part of their life (Glass, 2007). Whereas Generation Z was born into it, from 1995 to 2010. Marketers use different strategic marketing methods to target the two groups based on their characteristics and values.
The difference in buying behaviour of Millennials and Gen Z
A generation is determined by lifestyle and social values that influence buying behaviour. This is more commonly understood by factors like education, income and gender. Different generations are exposed to different social perceptions, economic and social opportunities, technology and norms (Hume, 2010).
Millennials generally want it all and want it now, in terms of rapid advancement, good pay, work-life balance and making a contribution to the society. They tend to select and consume products that help them to define their identity (Smith, 2011). They buy products based on the latest trends, brand and reputation of the retailer. This generation has a strong desire to make the best decision in terms of price and quality.
On the other Generation Z adopt different purchase-related methods like buying online pick up in stores or research online purchase offline or engage in fully online shopping (Hume, 2010). The online buying habits of Generation Z also depends on socio-economic status. Influence of family and social media influencers plays a major role in their buying behaviour.
Strategies that influence the buying behaviour of the Millennials
Stimulating demand using a digital framework helps to monetize latent demands. The online database about product experience, user’s preference and consumer sentiments help marketers to provide a value-added product. Investment in the data platforms has helped businesses to grow with real-time business insights. These insights include the demographic and psychographic segmentation along with the identification of trends and gaps. This empowers businesses to sense and response to demand (Smith, 2011).
Facilitated buying allows both the generations to adopt new channels and shift between channels in the purchase cycle. The merchants increase the lifetime value of customers by personalizing purchase experience for each and every segment of the cycle. These personalized offers and convenient options accelerate the sales cycle while making service interactions more meaningful (Moreno et al., 2017).
Since Millennials are active in recent technologies, location-based technologies like GPS and Geo-tagging help businesses to assess the location of the customers and provide accurate or available products from that location. In addition, such marketing strategies also influence customers to purchase products most popular in that region. An action that is based on location capitalizes a diverse shopping orientation and sometimes to even find the nearest offline store. Along with this the proximity messaging and advertising deepens the engagement with digital consumers (Glass, 2007).
Strategies that influence the buying behaviour of Generation Z
Promoting with creative content is a tactic and strategy of social media marketers to deliver customer value. Distributing relevant and personalized content aimed at attracting the interest of Generation Z appeals to them to make a purchase (Ren, 2014).
Generation Z makes extensive use of mobile and this distinguishes them from the previous generations. They spend their majority of the time using social media and hence businesses need to ensure that their web pages are responsive of mobile devices, optimize their content according to mobile devices for smaller screens and most importantly it should grab the 8-second lasting attention of the Gen Z (Voramontri & Klieb, 2018).
The Zen Z attention span generally lasts for a few seconds and thus in order to attract them, marketers work on creating a concise, highly visual and attention-grabbing content to grab their interest (Adzharuddin, 2012). Gen Z prefers content that demonstrates authenticity than a fictional reality (Ren, 2014). This creates a valuable collaborative experience by allowing individuals to interact with the host and other viewers.
Impact of social media
The development of the digital world has created modern ways of communicating. Generation Z and Millennials started off with a huge advantage over previous generations:
- Millennials and Gen Z are able to collect information extremely fast,
- they are adapted well into the digital world in comparison to their older generations and,
- they spend more time online than their older counterparts.
The social media has led to a revolution in the ways of seeking and obtaining information about the market. It has helped the consumer to connect and discuss brands. Consumers opinion about the product and services are now increasingly dominated and has empowered the consumer.
- Adzharuddin, N. A. (2012). Marketing Communication Through the Integration of New Media and Traditional Media: the Insights. Revista de Administratie Publica Si Politici Sociale, 1(8), 18–31. Retrieved from https://doaj.org/article/8d8ff00ea27f4b0eb2ec8e0712b21ff5
- Glass, A. (2007). Understanding generational differences for competitive success. Industrial and Commercial Training, 39(2), 98–103. https://doi.org/10.1108/00197850710732424
- Hume, M. (2010). Compassion without action: Examining the young consumers consumption and attitude to sustainable consumption. Journal of World Business, 45(4), 385–394. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jwb.2009.08.007
- Moreno, F. M., Lafuente, J. G., Carreón, F. Á., & Moreno, S. M. (2017). The Characterization of the Millennials and Their Buying Behavior. International Journal of Marketing Studies, 9(5), 135. https://doi.org/10.5539/ijms.v9n5p135
- Ren, Y. (2014). Foreword. Handbook of Research on Educational Communications and Technology: Fourth Edition, vii–xi. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-3185-5
- Smith, K. T. (2011). Digital marketing strategies that Millennials find appealing, motivating, or just annoying. Journal of Strategic Marketing, 19(6), 489–499. https://doi.org/10.1080/0965254X.2011.581383
- Voramontri, D., & Klieb, L. (2018). Impact of Social Media on Consumer Behaviour. International Journal of Information and Decision Sciences, 11(3), 1. https://doi.org/10.1504/ijids.2019.10014191
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