Gen Z Spells It Out: They Like Email, Special Offers, But Worry About Economy

Gen Z may have many attributes that are not easy to discern.

But here’s one thing that comes in clearly: Email is their preferred means of communication, according to a study by SheerID.  

Of the Gen Z consumers polled, 48% prefer email for hearing about offers from brands, followed by text/SMS (46%), social media (43%), online ads (24%) and brand websites (18%). 

And 40% Gen Z likes the occasional 20% discount and 10% off every purchase — but they appreciate freebies most.

Gen Z particularly welcomes discounts for takeout/food delivery.

What’s their favorite type of exclusive offer? Free shipping was cited by 60%, and 52% say a free gift. (47%). apparel (42%), beauty/personal care (40%), gaming (39%) and electronics (39%).

The least popular choice was online news subscriptions (10%). 



But here’s some bad news: Only 30% of Gen Z consumers are optimistic about the economy — and they are being frugal.

Gen Z college students are also not  eeling good about the economy — 71% are planning to seek discounts, while stretching their budgets.  

How has the economy affected their spending habits? Groceries and mobile phone/wireless were the only two categories where Gen Z is spending more than in the past.  

In contrast, 36% are spending less on takeout/food delivery, gaming, electronics and online news.  

“While economists say that the economy is getting better, Gen Z is not convinced,” says Jake Weatherly, CEO of SheerID. “Our research indicates that, in fact, young people are careful and purposeful with their spending.”

And there is one warning for brands: Be careful how you go about verifying that someone is indeed part of Gen Z.  

For 25%, having to create a separate account on a Gen Z deals website would have a negative impact. And 42% feel the same about having to share a document to prove their eligibility.  

On the other hand, 59% of Gen Z and 66% of Gen Z students would welcome d being instantly verified as a member of their group without sharing their data with other brands.  

What should companies do? Brands that provide exclusive offers “show a company’s dedication to recognize and help people,” Weatherly says. 

"We recommend brands invest in multi-touch point campaigns that combine digital and face-to-face interactions to effectively stand out in a noisy marketplace,” adds Gavin Aldrich CEO of Campus Group. “Brands that take an integrated approach to demonstrate and authentically communicate their external values hold the key to attracting Gen Z customers."


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