Generation Z consumers are fast becoming the biggest and most influential customer demographic, with potential to grow businesses more than any generation over the next 10 years. As one of the highest-earning and most well-educated generations, it is vital businesses do not ignore this important demographic in PR and marketing strategies.
However, Gen Z is one of the most difficult audiences to target and win over. They are a large, diverse generation and are savvy, hyperconnected, and have shorter attention spans, so there’s no ‘one size fits all approach’ and first impressions are make or break for brands.
Insurance businesses in particular have an opportunity to reach even more potential customers, as research has found 43% of Gen Z audiences do not feel well informed about insurance products, while more than a third of all consumers do not. Many report finding insurance complex with too many options available to consider, saying they would rather outsource their policy decision to an expert, while almost a quarter (24%) think it is unnecessary and 12% do not trust insurance companies.
As each generation has different needs, interests, and abilities, there are a number of considerations brand should include in their PR plans, when targeting and retaining key audiences.
Adopt a mobile-first approach
Generation Z grew up with smartphones and have better access to information than many others before. They do their research thoroughly before purchasing (68% read or watch at least three reviews before a first-time purchase), so it is vital to adopt a PR strategy with an online focus to generate reviews and positive brand mentions to gain a strong share of voice.
With the growth of social media and online communities, many of Gen Z’s strongest influences have come from online and influencer-driven content. Similarly, almost half get their news from social media, vs. traditional platforms and 75% regularly use a smartphone instead of a computer or tablet, so businesses should adopt a mobile-first approach and communicate with customers through platforms such as TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube as a top priority.
Leveraging the power of influencers as brand ambassadors can help reach more audiences on these platforms and convert them to trying a service, by sharing their opinions and recommendations.
Values over value
Although they have high disposable income Gen Z are mindful of how they spend their money, so businesses must be value-driven to create loyalty and build relationships with customers. Research suggests audiences are more interested in brands that stand up for ethical practices, protect the environment, give back to communities, and respect their employees, than those that offer the best price.
This generation wants to impact the world positively so want the companies they shop with to reflect those same values – as 68% expect brands to contribute to society.
As well as product-first PR activity to promote their services and offerings, insurance businesses should adopt a corporate social responsibility (CSR) strategy to effectively create and communicate their company values. While it is impossible to have all the answers, transparency is respected, and customers will be more likely to appreciate those trying to do something rather than nothing at all. For example, Lemonade, a mobile-based insurance tech company donates unclaimed money to a charity or cause chosen by its policyholders through a dedicated “Giveback” programme.
Ultimately, brands need to consider their overall purpose, impact on the planet and people, and should work towards having a meaningful ‘always on’ corporate strategy as an integral part of the businesses.
While Gen Z need more education about insurance offerings, they are wary of being sold to and put their faith in businesses that are genuine and trustworthy.
Despite being well experienced in technology and virtual communication, Gen Z tend to prefer an authentic connection with real people.
Similarly, nearly a third of consumers (29%) say they would be more interested in taking up insurance policies if services met their specific needs and 28% say they need more detailed information about benefits and terms & conditions.
Therefore, it is important to appoint a relatable brand spokesperson to showcase as the face of the business and educate potential customers through media activity. By securing first-person interviews and media profiling with spokespeople, audiences will resonate with them more and be more willing to learn about the brand.
Companies can also utilise their social media channels to educate consumers, such as creating easily-digestible video content with tips and advice from their employees or testimonials from other customers.
Tailoring PR and marketing strategies to the preferences of target audiences helps to future-proof businesses by ensuring any messaging delivered is timely and relevant. Brands must showcase they are creating products and experiences specifically for their customers’ needs to help them thrive in a crowded and competitive market.
If you’re an insurance business looking for a PR strategy to target and retain key audiences, get in touch with our team of experts today.