Unlike Millennials: 5 ways Gen Z differs from Gen Y [infographics and slideshares]

Unlike Millennials: 5 ways Gen Z differs from Gen Y [infographics and slideshares]

The Millennials’ time in the limelight is starting to give way to a new cohort. Generation Z—those born between 1996 and 2010—is finally coming of age. Marketers are just starting to understand this generation, but one thing is becoming clear: Gen Zers are decidedly different from the Millennials who preceded them. Jason Dorsey, a researcher and Gen Z expert, went so far as to say that “they don’t want to end up like Millennials.”

Gen Z’s purchasing power is now estimated to be $44 billion. The companies that understand these consumers are in the best position to win their affinity…and their business.

So what do we know so far about Gen Z? Here are five fascinating findings on how Gen Zers differ from Millennials.

Shaped by different experiences

Gen Z and Millennials differ on what they consider to be epochal events. While many Millennials remember the 9/11 tragedy, Gen Zers are probably more likely to remember Justin Bieber’s arrest. Having lived through different times, Gen Z’s outlook on the world is unique, from their attitudes toward money, to their perspective on technology.


Different upbringing means different values

Gen Z is being raised largely by Gen X parents, while Millennials have Baby Boomer parents. This Slideshare from Ryan Jenkins, a researcher and thought leader on Millennials, demonstrates how this differing parenting style, in combination with the acute awareness of a recession, leads Gen Z to be more pragmatic than Millennials. Gen Zers are more realistic when it comes to job opportunities available in the market, for example. They’re also less likely to take risks, seeking stability and security in their jobs and finances.


Looking to different influencers

As the first true digital natives, Gen Z basically grew up with YouTube. That has an impact on how they view celebrities and who they consider to be influential. In fact, according to an infographic from Dana Communications, an overwhelming majority (67 percent) of Gen Zers prefer to see real people in ads, whereas only 37 percent of Millennials feel the same. Gen Z and Gen Y also have differing views of loyalty programs, according to the infographic.

Credit: Dana Communications 


Gen Z is even more digital

While Millennials are sometimes stereotyped as the selfie generation, they’re actually slightly more conservative than Gen Z when it comes to digital behavior. For instance, 72 percent of Gen Zers visit YouTube daily, but only 52 percent of Millennials do the same, according to Civic Science. Marketers need to consider nuances like this when crafting their strategy, especially if they have products that target one demographic but not the other.

Credit: Civic Science infographic  


One values experiences, while the other prefers cool products

Crafting compelling marketing messages requires an understanding of what each generation values. While Gen Z and Millennials are close in age, they don’t necessarily value the same things. According to this visual overview from Deep Focus, 60 percent of Gen Z prefer cool products over experiences, but 77 percent of Millennials prefer the opposite.

Credit: Deep Focus Infographic


Gen Zers aren’t simply “Millennials on steroids”

In order to craft messaging, products and experiences that will resonate with Gen Z, brands can’t afford to simply replicate what they’re doing for Millennials. Without engaging this new generation on its own terms, brands will fail to capture the hearts and wallets of Gen Z.

To learn how to more effectively understand and reach this generation, download The Everything Guide to Generation Z.

  • Brian Sheridan

    Wow, 8 seconds attention span. That does give much time and must make spammy, clickbaity content marketing even more likely to pop up everywhere. At we have tried to focus on higher quality content but I am not sure now that it is worth the time and effort if we are going to find it so difficult to get Gen Zers to engage.

  • Anonymous

    “[Millennials never heard of] Floppy disks” and “[Generation Z never heard of] Flip phones”

    Is that some kind of joke? Nearly every computer was using floppy disks before say 2005, and flip phones were all the rage in the late 00’s.

  • Millennials more brand-loyal and brand-conscious than Gen Z… Sounds nice marketing

  • Brasto FP

    “[Millennials never heard of] Floppy disks”

    Born in ’83 I used 5 1⁄4-inch floppy diskettes when I grew up. I even know what POTS is and used a 9600 bit/s dial-up modem.

  • Iɴᴠᴇʀɴᴏ Rᴜssᴏ

    “Generazion Z never heard of: flip phones”
    Are you fucking stupid, I’m not even that old and my first phone was a flip phone.

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