So, we all know Gen Z (young people aged 16-21) don’t watch TV right? Wrong! When it comes to going out, Gen Z like to stay in. According to new research, young people these days prefer to stay home and watch TV/ Netflix – more than the UK general population (73% versus 69%, Research Now).

And while they are hanging around under their duvets downloading TV onto their laptops and iPads, Gen Z are still impressed by traditional media. They may spend less time watching traditional TV in real time, but Gen Z are consistently more positive about traditional ad formats such as outdoor, print ads and cinema, TV and radio ads than standard digital alternatives (according to Kantar Millward Brown).

Going the extra mile

So, Gen Z is ad receptive and waiting for ‘advertainment’. Indeed, this is a generation increasingly demanding of its advertising. They have grown up in an on-demand world of infinite choice, and this flavors their expectations. And there are particular things that appeal to them – music, humor, a strong design aesthetic and celebrity endorsement all make Gen Z more receptive to advertising. Achieving relevance and authenticity is the way to get Gen Z’s attention – use a style and tone of voice they can relate to. But just getting the recipe right is only the first step.

Playing in their space

One way to appeal to this audience is to play in their space, which inevitably means being even more social. Getting your TV ad shared is the key. Gen Z are significantly heavier users of social platforms, not just in terms of the time they spend on them but also the number of platforms they visit. These range well beyond Facebook and YouTube and include Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat.

According to Kantar Millward Brown, 36% of Gen Z globally access Instagram several times a day and 24% access Snapchat at the same frequency. 55% of them also feel the ideal way for a brand to target them is via social media, compared to only 26% of the general populations in the UK (Research Now).

A great ad won’t sit on TV without shares. But how do you know if you have a shareable concept on your hands or one that should be ditched?

Allowing them to play back

Above all this is a generation attracted to ads that allow them to co-create or see what happens when they make a decision. According to Kantar Millward Brown, they are more positive toward brands that let them vote for something to happen, choose an option or make decisions.

Innovation in formats like native ads, sponsored lenses and sponsored filters all attract much stronger approval with Gen Z than other age groups. So we are going beyond sharing to true engagement, with Gen Z wanting to co-create and shape their relationships with brands.

Hitting home for Gen Z … Is it worth the risk?

Co-creation can be risky for a brand to do, so how do you ensure success with TV ads? Is your ad strong enough to run, spark a conversation and go viral?

With LinkNow for TV, it’s now possible to test creative throughout the development process and understand the impact of different scenarios with the right audience.

The clue to winning the hearts and minds of Gen Z is to create engagement in the space they love – social. But that means ensuring your TV creative is going to work, and the clue to understanding how to do that lies with validated methodologies, such as LinkNow from ZappiStore.

Daniel Evans

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Daniel Evans

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