CXM would like to present to you the Snap research study which uncovers that Gen Z (born between the late 1990s and early 2010s) are shaping online and retail culture. The global (Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, India, Italy, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Sweden, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States) study, of nearly 5,000 Gen Z carried out in partnership with Crowd DNA, reveals a significant shift toward this cohort embracing immersive shopping experiences.

The results also reveal what motivates Gen Z to engage with brands, what brands need to do to build deeper connections, and why brands need to embrace AR to remain relevant.  

What the study says

As the true ‘digital native’ generation, visual communication is key for Gen Z, with 92% of UK respondents saying they have used some form of visual communication when messaging friends, and 3 in 5 say that they are using it to get a more personal connection. This cohort has embraced AR, with 93% of respondents interested in using AR for shopping according to the study. In the UK other key findings include:

  • 88% are interested in using AR to try on makeup or clothes 
  • 50% agree that digital avatars / Bitmojis help them to express themselves
  • 60% saying AR experiences feel more personal
  • More than 60% that AR experiences make life easier
  • More than half (51%) of Gen Z are more likely to pay attention to an ad that incorporates AR 

How Gen Z feels about the environment and relationships according to the study

An image showing a girl shopping clothes by using an AR tool.

The study reveals that Gen Z cares deeply about society and the environment, plus the social impact of their lifestyles. With 66% in the UK study saying they feel a responsibility to make the world a better place. Furthermore, 67% also state they find value in taking action for the collective good, and these respondents are three times more likely to want to use AR shopping tools to help reduce carbon emissions.

The study also shows that Gen Z values relationships now more than any other generation, with nearly 3 in 4 also agreeing that connecting with close friends is the simplest way for them to feel happier. Over 60 % of UK Gen Z (69%) respondents actually plan on spending more time connecting in person (vs 63% of Millennials and 59% of Gen X).

The true barometer

Jo Tenzer, Head of EMEA Marketing Insights at Snapchat, comments, “This global study of 5000 is a true barometer of how Gen Z are feeling and communicating. A powerful theme emerging from the study is the particularly strong desire among Gen Z to create meaningful connections with people and brands.

Brands need to respond to this by being open, honest and clear with their goals, motivations and values. With a desire to express their true selves creatively and visually, Gen Z are also seeking fun, personalised, immersive and social experiences. AR offers the tool for brands to seamlessly facilitate this by enhancing real-world experiences.

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