New Whitepaper Reveals How Brands Can Reach Zoomers

Gen Z is the newest generation of consumers, one that’s more sophisticated, diverse, and tech-savvy than the previous ones. Because they don’t know what it’s like not to be connected to the internet, their behavior is very different than other generations’.

That’s why marketers and advertisers need to understand what the best channels to use when communicating and advertising to Gen Z are and also what they respond to.

To gain more insights into this new generation of consumers, Creatopy surveyed over 1,100 Gen Zers to learn about their shopping habits, social media platforms usage, and advertising behavior.

What Defines Gen Z?

Gen Zers are those born between 1996 and 2012. By the end of 2022, Gen Z will account for 40% of global consumers and represent approximately 20% of the U.S. population.

It’s estimated that in 2022, there will be more than 41 million Gen Z digital buyers in the U.S.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, annually, around 7.3 million Gen Z individuals work full-time in the U.S., and 6.3 million of them are part-time employees. So this generation may not like the idea of labor, but they are certainly making their own money.

Recent data showed that in 2021, Gen Z had a disposable income of $360 billion, which gives this generation a spending power of $140 billion or higher. That’s because research shows that most of them save around a third of their earnings.

What Are Gen Z’s Shopping Habits?

77% of the Gen Z respondents that participated in Creatopy’s survey reported they have a stable income. But this does not mean that the rest of them don’t have any income at all. Gen Z Planet explains that around 43% of Gen Zers earn money through side hustles, such as dog walking, babysitting, selling handmade items online, etc.

One might think that Gen Zers have a lot of disposable income and can easily be persuaded to spend their money—but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. They are, in fact, very smart buyers. The survey shows that most of them shop online on a monthly basis. It also shows that 49% of them prefer to buy something only when they need it, and only 18% buy something they see and like right away. So despite having numerous online stores available to them at the click of a button, they take their time to think about what they want and evaluate their need for certain items.

When it comes to their money, Gen Zers put a lot of thought into who they are supporting. Whether it’s environmental protection or racial justice, Gen Zers choose to buy from brands that get involved with the causes they believe in. They prefer brands that take a stand on social and environmental issues—47% agreed, and 19% strongly agreed with this statement.

How Does Gen Z Use Social Media?

Gen Zers are not only smart buyers, but also smart content consumers. They are the first generation of digital natives, with more than 50% of them being online at all times. They know how to spot irrelevant, fake, or misleading information much easier than the generations before them. This also means that their attention span is lower, so brands need to consider how they can impress them in just a few seconds.

Inside Gen Z’s Preferences: Shopping, Social Media, Advertising

When it comes to the topic of social media platforms, 26% of respondents chose YouTube as the platform they spend most of their time on. 25% picked TikTok as their favorite, and 20% said they prefer Instagram. This goes to show how crucial it is for brands to focus on social media if they want to attract Gen Z.

If brands decide to channel their energy on social media, there is one important keyword they must keep in mind: authenticity. As noted above, Gen Z has very refined skills when it comes to dissecting information. Not only that, but they are also content creators, not just consumers, so they know the ins and outs of the business. They can quickly spot and immediately reject actions they perceive as performative or “woke for the sake of being woke.” Brands need to understand their values and speak their language.

How Does Gen Z Feel About Advertising?

Besides authenticity, Gen Z appreciates trust and creativity. According to the survey, they like ads from trustworthy brands, followed closely by those that are visually captivating and outside-the-box. They want to see advertisements from brands whose values align with their own and that talk to them in a unique way.

On the other hand, Creatopy’s findings show that what Gen Z doesn’t appreciate are disruptive, clickbait-y, and long ads.

Surprisingly, despite the growing popularity of video content, static image ads can still capture Gen Z’s attention just fine. Around half of the respondents said they prefer to see video ads on their social media feeds, while the other half chose static image ads. More than that, respondents ranked display ads as the first most trustworthy online advertising type and the third most trustworthy type of ad overall. This is great news for brands, as it means that when it comes to being visually captivating for Gen Z, video is not the only way to go.

The majority of the respondents revealed that they prefer to research a new product before buying, once again proving that Gen Zers are not impulsive buyers.

As far as privacy is concerned, Gen Z has made up their minds. Most respondents answered that they are unwilling to give out their personal information in exchange for more personalized ads. Moreover, 75.38% agreed that ads that rely on personal data are invasive. They are fully aware of the risks that come with giving out personal information and care about their data..


Gen Z is not a difficult audience to reach. Most of them are online for long hours, all you really need to do is log on to TikTok or YouTube. The key is to get to know them, understand their values, and speak their language. Brands should take the time to build trust with Gen Z by being transparent, honest, authentic, and taking advantage of user-generated content. They should also focus on being inclusive and always pay attention to sales strategies.

It’s all about listening to and meeting their needs.

Read next: Gen Z is all set to become the educated generation in their pursuit of a happy life
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