Expert advice on how to reach Generation Z

A higher ed marketer shares her expertise about targeting this digital generation

Fact: Gen Z is the most socially conscious generation yet.
Gen Z cares a lot about inclusion, diversity, and individuality. “It’s important to them to be who they are and not deny it. They are redefining what normal is; they understand it’s a patchwork quilt rather than a single piece of fabric,” says Morton.

What this means for higher ed: You have to break out of the mold to market to them. Don’t use the same stock photo as everyone else. Be more inclusive and understand that the norm isn’t what it used to be. They are savvy about marketing and look up to social influencers—even though they know they are getting paid for what they do.

Fact: Gen Z is entrepreneurial.
Gen Z is fascinated with the “cool product,” and they value authenticity and transparency. They want to own their own business and be in it for long haul.

What this means for higher ed: Colleges ask for a lot of information, and this generation is well-aware of data leaks and cybersecurity threats. Offer them a sense of security in their communications and in what they share; be transparent about their interactions with your school.

4 quick takeaways

1. Mobile first. Do not make them go to their desktop to do anything.

2. Be concise. Content needs to quick, catchy, and with a clear message. A great example is The Truth Campaign, which does a fantastic job of capturing Gen Z.

3. Feed their spirit. Give them new and innovative classes and programs that redefine normal. That is very important to them.

4. Tap into their individuality. Show them that they can start clubs, design their own programs, and bring their socially conscious attitudes into their fields of study.