How to engage Gen Z and Millennial customers

Research reveals digital habits.

Gen Z and Millennials communicate with others more digitally than in person (65%), according to the first of a two-part research report from LivePerson, the leading provider of cloud mobile and online business messaging solutions, assessing digital habits and preferences among Gen Z and Millennials across the globe.

This preference for digital communications is specifically targeted at messaging. When asked if they could only keep either the phone app or messaging/SMS app on their smartphone, a majority of respondents (69.4%) would choose the messaging app. This percentage is also higher for those in Australia (69.5%), the US (73.4%), and UK (73%).

Younger consumers are open to receiving digital offers through text message. A quarter of respondents (25.1%) would like to receive offers or promotions this way from brands they already do business with. Of consumers surveyed, 39.5% declared that offers must be relevant for a brand to send them an SMS.

They also expect a high threshold of digital convenience when seeking help from a brand. When asked to rank how they typically try to get a question answered from a brand, going to the app or website was the number one choice, on average, across the globe.

Furthermore, answers must be available when and where the customer needs them, or a company will likely lose a sale. For less expensive purchases (under $20 or equivalent), 73.4% of Millennials will give up on a brand within 10 minutes if they do not get the answer they need.

Some other key findings included:

  • The phone is the new wallet: 61.8% of global consumers ages 18–34 would choose to leave their wallet at home instead of their phone.
  • Digital is the new IRL (“in real life”): Globally, a majority of Gen Z and Millennials (65%) communicate with each other more often digitally than in person.
  • The future is 100% digital: A majority of Gen Z and Millennials around the world (69.5%) can imagine a future where 100% of purchases are done digitally/online.

LivePerson global head of communications and research, Rurik Bradbury said, “We wanted to look more closely at the younger consumer audience, across different countries, and in more depth than the well-known trope that young people love their smartphones. What we see in the research data is the phone truly becoming an extension of the self, and the platforms and apps within it — digital life — occupying more than their offline interactions.”

This survey was commissioned by LivePerson and conducted online by independent research firm Survata, which interviewed 4,013 global consumers ages 18–34 across six countries (Australia, US, UK, Germany, France, and Japan) between September 1, 2017, and September 11, 2017.

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