GM Thought of the Week: Youth Marketing Strategy conference


GM Thought of the Week: Youth Marketing Strategy conference

The Youth Marketing Strategy event took place this month, focusing on how to effectively engage with Gen Z.

There were two key recurrent themes across the many key notes. The first was questioning the effectiveness of traditional digital advertising when targeting a demographic that perceives it as intrusive, too frequent and irrelevant.


Figures on global ad blocking, showing 58% of Male and 42% of Female rejecting advertising on line, are a further source of concern for advertisers. However, if we take a closer look at the available data, it’s pretty clear that this is not the end of the road for digital advertising, rather, the rejection of traditional advert models are inspiring better quality comms strategies, more tailored and relevant.


In fact, a communication strategy built around Gen Z will have to inspire, inform and entertain in order to be able to convince. Furthermore, brands need to be perceived as “useful”, hence the relevance and effectiveness of product advertising: Barclays Digital Eagles, the Waitrose Food magazine and the EasyJet site are just few successful examples of how to advertise their service using content as the primary tool of engagement. This is reflected in the trend of more and more consumer brands deciding to include an editorial team in their company structure.


The second topic centered on the dilemma of data vs. creativity.  An accurate profiling of the Gen Z audience shows that a strategy that does not take into account data is doomed to fail. However, as this is a demographic that is highly responsive to experiences and emotive engagement, an approach that does not convey an authentic message will not deliver either.


So what’s the recipe to engage with the 16-34 demographic? An insight-led strategy that takes into account challenges and passion points of Gen Z and that adds value to their experiences seems to be the golden ticket.


Generation Media is a leading independent media agency, the number 1 specialist worldwide for communications to children, young people, families and the entertainment sector. If you’d like to find out more on how to engage with the 16-34 demographic, please email:


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