With Millennials and Generation Z making up an increasing percentage of the travel market, it is essential to keep brand communication principles in line with the preferences and expectations of these two generations. Good news, the expectations of these two groups share a lot of similarities.
Generation Z won’t buy your brand story
According to our recent research, 81% of Millennials expect brands to be transparent in their marketing and actively talk about their social and environmental impact. This covers environmental, people and animal rights initiatives, reducing wastage and reasonable use of resources.
In fact, 61% of Millennials and 78% of Generation Z buyers claimed that they are significantly influenced by sustainability and fair trade.
To catch the attention of Generation Z, communication about environmental and social impact needs to be taken a step further. They judge brands about their purpose and make purchase decisions based on what purposes they would like to be part of. They want to know how companies work on solving real-world issues, such as hunger, child-labor, local social problems caused by the industrialization of developing regions or inequal economics.
When making purchase decisions, these values for Millennials and Gen Z are equally important compared to quality, craftsmanship, and exclusivity.
They want to buy from a brand with purpose, one that does not just claim craftsmanship but demonstrates what craftsmanship and responsibility mean in real-world contexts such as workers’ welfare, education or environmental responsibility.
Both Millennials and Generation Z need stories to be engaged but Generation Z also requires storyproving to be convinced. They tend to gravitate towards companies that can demonstrate their claims with authentic references and endorsements. To build trust and a profound connection with a brand they already like, they need evidence that backs up claims.
The dynamics of the process is very similar to how we build real-world relationships with people.
Should your brand focus on communication for your people instead of established Gen X buyers?
Luxury brands that failed to recognize the communication preferences of Gen Z and Millennials are losing out on younger customer segments, while still being popular among Generation X and Boomers. This might be all right commercially to sustain revenue from older generations, for the time being, but failing to build trust and credibility among young buyers will have a significantly negative impact in the future.
Brands that transitioned successfully have managed to keep older generations close by maintaining exclusivity and prestige as parts of their marketing communication.
Old values and new requirements do not conflict, and legacy communication principles do not need to be dismissed to make way for new ones.