How to Connect with Gen-Z using Video Content

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As Gen-Z enters the workforce, they’ve got more disposable income than ever for… um, what exactly do they buy?

Gen-Z might be a mystery to your company, but if there’s one thing we know for sure, it’s that they absorb more video content than anyone.

They spend an average of 4 hours and 15 minutes per day on their phones, and over 60% watch YouTube videos daily.

Remember, this generation’s formative years were spent making Vine videos, posting on Snapchat, and boosting Influencers (that you’ve never heard of) to god-status. All of this was done using video.

So, how do you market to the most video-savvy generation ever? It’s not as hard as you think.

Here’s how to do it.

Make it beautiful

Visually striking content is what keeps Gen-Z on the page. This affection for eye-catching content has been fostered by visual-only platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, and (to an extent) Snapchat.

Their habit of scrolling through beautiful albums daily means that only the most visually intriguing images and videos will warrant a few valuable seconds of Gen-Z’s time.

But beauty isn’t everything. Gen-Zs also appreciate straight-forward and genuine messaging.

Check out how this whirling, jarring, dancing mix of animation and live shots from Vodafone entices Gen-Z viewers and then engages them with a meaningful message.

Keep it moving

Take a look at the Vodaphone ad again and notice how much movement and variety there is in each shot. Some shots last less than a second, and none last more than a few.

Gen-Zs need a lot of movement and quick cuts to stay engaged. Even videos that feature “talking heads” use a lot of cuts to keep viewers’ attention. Popular YouTuber Anthony Fantano does this on his music review channel theneedledrop.

If you’re worried that creating hundreds of shots will cost an arm and a leg, do what most brands big and small do and use stock video.

There are millions of high-quality HD stock videos to choose from, and you can reuse them once you have the rights. You can start your stock video footage library for as little as $50 per HD clip. Once you have a trove, you’ll be able to create Gen-Z-friendly videos regularly.

Get to the point

Whatever you’re about to say, Gen-Zs don’t have time for it.

Most are scrolling away on social media, so if they give your video a chance, you’d better get to the point quick—or they’ll bounce.

This has led to the rise of the “micro-moment,” a video that lasts less than 15 seconds. It delivers a simple message and a compelling visual. Primed perfectly by the age of Vine, Gen-Zs don’t just have the time for these short snippets—they were raised to find them compelling.

Check out this visually captivating micro-moment from Corona.

Audio-optional content

This one is really important.

Many Gen-Zs operate on multiple screens simultaneously, and many use their phones A LOT in public. This means that many of the videos they watch will be muted.

On social media sites like Facebook and Reddit, videos are automatically muted until you click an icon to add audio. If your video needs sound to be engaging, it won’t engage Gen-Z.

Put a focus on visual content and always put text on the screen. The Vodafone and Corona examples do this well.

If you NEED to use sound, put a note above your video (or at the beginning) that says “sound on.” But if you make this request, your video better deliver some serious value. 

Break the 4th Wall

Engaging with Gen-Zs means more than getting them to share or go to your site. They want to participate directly in content by giving their opinions (likes and upvotes) and engaging with other viewers.

This usually happens in comment sections, which can go wildly off-course and generate complex conversations, arguments, and even friendships. Make sure that your videos encourage and foster this activity, however, be careful not to lose control. Learn to elicit interactions that you want and to reward them by reposting, commenting, or offering rewards.

Check out how Axe Body Spray uses a micro-moment to connect with Gen-Z. This video does an excellent job of positioning engagement in a way that benefits the brand and encourages positive interactions.

Gen-Z may be elusive to marketers, but they’re not as mysterious as you think. They appreciate genuine honesty and respond to value just like other consumers. Remember to be short, sweet, and visually compelling. All it takes is a few seconds to connect with Gen-Z using video content.

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