We in Generation Z are known as the technology-obsessed, social justice-fighting generation, but let’s get a little more specific. Born between 1995-2010, Gen Z includes kids and college students today, and it’s showing up all over Ohio State. Student organizations don’t just startup because of shared interests anymore. More often than not, they’ll have service events throughout the semester or aspects of their annual goals that give the organization a cause to fight for outside of just sheer interest. Altogether, there are about 2.5 billion Gen Z’s. Our generation is reshaping entertainment industries, politics, and the economy by using technology to make our voices heard. How do older generations know how to spot us? There are a couple dead giveaways. (Remember – these are statistical generalizations and will not apply to every Gen Z.)
Many Gen Z’ers saw the financial hits that their parents took during the 2008 recession and learned to be concerned about financial stability. Most of us believe that we will have to work harder than previous generations to achieve the same financial gains. Overall, we’d like to retire earlier than 70 years old, but most of us believe that it’s unlikely.
This generation is also composed of deal hunters. We shop mostly online, and we tend to check in with our parents before making large purchases. We use reward systems often and value special offers via email. We also put more research into our purchases than previous generations, changing the way that even marketing looks today than in the past. The next time your marketing professor says that Facebook Ads are a good investment, remember that your spending habits embody the future market, so your instincts on advertising are more likely to be innovative than they are incorrect.
Very Politically Involved And Socially Conscious
The majority of Gen Z’ers are concerned about the planet and humanity’s impact on it. We don’t differ too much from millenials on political views in general, and we lean more liberal than older generations, which tends to happen with any new generation. We especially differ with our support of the LGBTQ+ community and our likelihood to escape gender roles and see it as a fluid concept. Gen Z’s want to make a difference in the world, specifically when it comes to topics like poverty, human trafficking, refugees, and racism. We spent our childhood watching Millennials elect the first black American president, for god’s sake. In our eyes, the world is pretty far behind where it should be.
Using Social Media For News Updates, Communication, And Entertainment
The Gen Z multitasking skills are crazy! The most common example being our tendency to catch up on Twitter trends, Snapchat streaks, and the latest Tik Tok dances while binge-watching Parks and Rec for the fifth time. Gen Z’ers have an attention span of about eight seconds, so brands are having an even harder time reaching this generation. Most Gen Z’s prefer that brands reach them through social media, which is pretty easy to do since Generation Z spends about 11 hours a day on social media on average.
We also tend to have somewhere between ten and 40 apps on our phones. However, we’re not scrolling for days because we want to stay social and relevant – we tend to use our social media more than older generations for things like academic research. More than half of Gen Z’ers say that we believe our technological abilities will help us with our career goals.
Making Sex Less Taboo
Gen Z’ers watch porn, and we’re not ashamed of it. Most of us watched porn for the first time before we turned 18. We’re also sexting more than previous generations since technology provides more opportunities for sexy communication. (If you want to know more about Ohio State’s sex habits specifically, check out our Sex Survey that came out last month!)
Beyond just being independent, open-minded, and ready to change the world, Gen Z’ers are ready to start our own businesses. We want to be catered to, so if a workplace doesn’t suit us, we’ll probably end up creating our own. We expect to fail before we succeed, and we’re ready to start again afterwards. Gen Z’ers are definitely ready for professional challenges, though many wish that our hobbies could just turn into a full-time occupation. (Let this be a reminder to support your local businesses, artists, and others of the kind so that you can be a part of the fun, too, one day!)
Sourced by Business Insider (2018) and danschawbel.com/blog (2014).