There are many lessons for retailers and brands to learn by studying the top brands, revealed by Getwizer research, that younger generations are embracing.
By Jennifer Allison
Gen Alpha and Gen Z are shaking up the world of retail unleashing a tidal wave of diversity and inclusivity. This is obliterating the unrealistic standards of beauty and body types that have dominated the fashion and clothing sector for generations. These new generations of consumers demand diversity, where all kinds of different body shapes and sizes are not only accepted but celebrated.
How businesses need to adapt to create a positive brand and retail experience for Gen Z and Gen Alpha customers was a key focus of a recent Getwizer webinar. Retailers and brands have very good incentives to adapt and connect with what are the most educated, diverse and richest segments of consumers: Gen Z reportedly has $360 billion to spend per year, while Gen Alpha wields an even heftier $500 billion.
Resonating with Gen Z and Gen Alpha
It is the brands that truly connect with these generations by displaying a deep commitment towards inclusivity that will succeed. However, resonating with Gen Z and Gen Alpha is not straightforward, as research conducted by Getwizer reveals. When examining which brands, retail stores or websites catered the best these new generations, there were clear winners that significantly outperform the majority.
The key brands that resonate with Gen Z and Gen Alpha, according to their parents
What Brands Are Doing to Win Over Younger Consumers
Those companies that have succeeded in connecting with Gen Z and Gen Alpha did not do so by chance. Their success has come on the back of a clear strategic focus, heavy investment and very targeted campaigns. Below we look at the top 5 brands and retailers that have made a deep impact with younger consumers, according to their parents, and briefly detail some of the key reasons as to why they have achieved this success.
The massive retail giant came out on top in Getwizer’s research as the top performing brand for Gen Z and Gen Alpha. But Walmart has been targeting these younger generations for years using live social media events to drive sales and collaborating with online influencers to create product ranges, such as a range of toys in partnership with 10-year-old YouTuber, Ryan Kaji. It also recently teamed up with Garnier to develop an exclusive hair care line focused on the scalp to attract Gen Z consumers.
To better attract digital savvy Gen Z and Gen Alpha, Target has invested billions of dollars into its omnichannel offerings. Knowing that younger generations have grown up with everything easily accessible and just a click away on their mobile, the underlying strategy, according to CEO Brian Cornell, is to make Target “America’s easiest place to shop.” It is also the first US retailer to bring Pinterest Lens where shoppers can search photos they have taken and see a curated collection of similar products they can buy in Target.
Understanding that Gen Z and Gen Alpha are immersed in the fast-paced online world, Amazon uses its vast variety of products and short delivery times to appeal to these young consumers. It also directly targets Gen Z with its Prime Youth offering, which entitles 18-24-year-olds to get a 50% cashback on Amazon Prime membership by simply verifying their age.
- Old Navy
The iconic American clothing and accessories retailing company is one of the brands leading the way on inclusivity and challenging gender stereotypes, according to the Gen Z Fashion Report by student affinity network Unidays. It has also re-enforced its credentials by joining forces with brands like Popsugar to create exclusive tween collections.
The global sportswear brand has also been recognized for its positive standing with Gen Z, but it has its sights set firmly on wooing Gen Alpha. Its Nike Adventure Club allows children primarily aged between 2 to 10 to select Nike and Converse shoes “for the right-fitting shoe as their feet – and tastes – evolve.” The subscription service also comes with adventure guides, filled with outdoor games and activities that parents can do with their kids. It also launched “Nikeland,” a new interactive space inside of the Roblox gaming platform. Targeting Gen Z and Gen Alpha, Nikeland enables children to use their mobile devices to play online, so movement in real-life informs in-game actions like long jumps or speed runs.
A Focus on Who is Setting the Agenda
For those retailers and brands who are not yet focusing on wooing the younger generations, Nike’s president and chief executive John Donahoe provides some words of wisdom as to why they need to act — “The way most companies look at consumers is ‘well, who’s got disposable income?’,” he says. “We don’t look at it that way. We look at, who is setting the agenda?”
Learn more about how the difficult shopping experiences of Gen Alpha and Gen Z are leading to changes in retail here.
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