We might still be fairly sprightly here at Intelligent Ink, but sometimes even we feel old – and never more so than upon realising that, tech savvy as our generation is, we’ve got nothing on the kids finishing school now.
Meet Generation Alpha. The newest generational group to join the purchasing world, they’ve created one of the largest demographic shifts since the Baby Boomer generation. Coined as ‘screenagers’, these customers are tech natives. Having grown up with technology being seamlessly integrated into their lives, it is no longer considered a tool but rather a necessity. A seven-year-old can probably navigate a smartphone as well as a millennial! Suddenly tablets are replacing teddy bears, text messages are replacing passing notes, and landlines and phone books have already become historical items.
So what does that mean for business? In particular, as new generational groups gain purchasing power, how do content marketers adapt their strategy in order to successfully target each group? A strategy that works well at targeting Baby Boomers won’t necessarily be as effective for the next generation.
To evolve with the generational changes, we’re expecting a few changes when it comes to content:
Interactive content is not a new development, but it’s becoming more and more popular in the sphere of content marketing. Gen Alphas have an incredibly short attention span of only 8 seconds; that’s shorter than most snapchats! To remain competitive and to get the attention of this segment you need to be able to hook your audience and give them immediate value. There will still be a place for traditional content marketing, although the use of visual aids and connective messages will grab more attention as a new facet of interactive content is on the horizon.
We’ve seen this trend evolve with both millennial and generation Z, but personalisation will become increasingly popular for Gen Alpha consumers. You can get your name embroidered or attached to consumer goods, create a Barbie that looks like your twin and have advertisements that are tailored to your search history pop up in front of you. Personalisation will go further in the coming years with interactions with big brands needing to be all about the individual customer. To lead the way in this, it should feel as though the individual is the sole person who is being targeted with a particular message.
Extra-long or extra-short
Engaging content that will hook the audience will either be extremely short or lengthy and in-depth.
With the two extremities in length comes a rethink to your overall strategy. Can your message be translated in a short, concise, snappy message that is most likely to be delivered over social media? Or is your message compelling enough to be in the form of a lengthy story? If your content is worth reading, customers will go beyond their typical 8 second attention spam to gain value and share articles.
One thing will never change about creating good content – and that is that, to be truly effective, you must take into account who you’re talking to. The first step in writing any content is to think about who you’re trying to target – if it’s a B2B customer, are they the business owner or perhaps the problem owner further down the chain? If you’re talking to consumers, are you talking to an early 40s mother who works and is always busy, or to a teenager in Generation Alpha who is used to getting everything instantaneously and spends their life on their phone? Considering who you’re talking to will help you define your key messaging, tone, channels used, and even (as we’ve said), the length, helping you grab the attention of these tech natives, share your story, and connect with your audience.
It won’t be long until these digital natives become the new customers. Now, more than ever, businesses need to be thinking about adapting to digital processes, and focusing on customising the experience of each user. Get ready!