Posts Tagged ‘Generation Z’



January 28, 2019

POWERSHIFT MARKETING – THIS WEEK – Here are few marketing tips and research thoughts for this week. As always, contact me if you have any questions or topics you would like me to cover.

NEW SERVICE – Just another pitch for my new proofing and editing service. Check it out here.

DON’T ACCEPT DEBIT AND CREDIT CARDS? It could be time to rethink this approach. The all cash society is definitely on the way out. Roughly 29% of U.S. adults say they make no purchases using cash during a typical week. People who say they make all or almost all of their weekly purchases using cash has decreased to 18%, according to Pew Research. Some businesses are now thinking of becoming cashless establishments. Is this something you should consider? We can help with research to learn if this is wise for your business.

ARE TAXIS AN ENDANGERED SPECIES? The share of Americans who use ride-hailing services has increased dramatically. Today, 36% of U.S. adults say they have used a ride-hailing service such as Uber or Lyft, compared to 15% in late 2015.

MORE INSIGHTS INTO GEN Z – Last week, after I predicted that marketers will need to understand Generation Z (people born in 1996 or before), the Wall St. Journal did an excellent article on seven things that make Gen Z different. As WSJ author Christopher Mims points out, members of the most racially diverse American generation ever, share one thing in common: their world has been defined by connecting online via social media and mobile devices. Here’s a quick recap of the seven things Mims pointed out in his January 26th article (just in case you can’t access it).

1. Gen Z doesn’t distinguish between online and real life. Common wisdom today says that young people don’t hang out with their friends in real life anymore. Perhaps, but Gen Z believes interacting digitally is real life.

2. Privacy online? Gen Z expects that everything typed into a keyboard or captured on a camera will end up on the internet. So, the smart ones never let down their guard.

3. Facebook is out, Instagram is in. I’ve commented on this before but Gen Z says that using Facebook to connect with peers is somewhere between never and no way. As reported in the story, “Facebook for my generation solely exists so that other generations can see that I’m still alive.” Now, this might be good news if you want to reach older consumers, but not if you want to reach Gen Z.

4. Social media is how they stay informed. I’ve commented on this too. Gen Z’s find news almost entirely via social media. Many use Twitter and Instagram to get news. For those with iPhones, Apple News is popular because it means one less app.

5. Video is important, but it isn’t everything. YouTube is huge. For those who are into the culture of influencers, many who spend time on Instagram use YouTube too. Twitter’s ill-fated Vine changed the way this generation views content, leading to a market for subsequent short-form video and apps including TikTok.

6. Gen Z thinks concerns about screens are overblown. If you grew up online, you are not concerned about spending too much time online. Some members of Gen Z believe that the media is obsessed with the negative impacts of tech and doesn’t talk enough about how it empowers their generation.

7. But they’re still susceptible to tech addiction and burnout. Gen Z are acutely aware that their level of online engagement isn’t always sustainable. Some take breaks from social media, others wonder how it’s changing their brains. They also report having trouble knowing where the line between healthy and unhealthy use should be.

Until next week, thanks for reading.



January 21, 2019

THIS WEEK – Took a break from blogging to re-design and launch a new 2019 blog format. Welcome to PowerShift Marketing Notes – This Week.

PowerShift Marketing is the name of my marketing book and workshops I conducted for small businesses.  I thought it was a good name for my weekly blog update. My blog will still focus on marketing trends and research. It won’t necessarily come out every Monday, but it will appear weekly, starting this week.

Thought I would start off with some 2019 predictions.

BUSINESSES WILL TAKE A FRESH LOOK AT CUSTOMER SERVICE TRAINING – In December 2018 a Hilton Hotel (Doubletree in Portland) made headlines by kicking out a black guest because he was loitering in the lobby while calling his mom. Most customer service training programs are decades behind in understanding the challenge of today’s diverse customer bases. This is even more true in Oregon where rural communities do not have the diversity you find in urban areas. Today’s customers – Hispanics, Blacks, old and young, Muslims, women – they all must be treated with similar respect. That’s why we have added a dynamic new “They Don’t Look Like Us” segment to our 2019 customer service training. Here’s a link to all our current programs. Email me if you are interested in doing some training prior to the start of your season (

BUSINESSES WILL RETHINK FACEBOOK MARKETING – We still believe that Facebook, if used correctly, is a solid marketing tool. But Facebook has been sailing through troubled waters and a growing number of consumers are not pleased with their use of personal data and how it is uses it to categorizes them. So, Facebook growth is slowing and there is a growing backlash to it. That’s why you need to redefine your Facebook strategy. Our research shows that not all social media generates traffic to websites. Contact us if you want to learn more about changes in social media for 2019 and our ability to help you.

MARKET RESEARCH WILL BE MORE CRITICAL FOR SMALL BUSINESSES – Sure the big guys have always believed in research. But many small businesses think even a modest investment is unaffordable. This will change. Today’s consumer holds all the power. They have already researched your business online before deciding to buy (or visit) what you have. So, you need to know them better than ever. Consider these recent statistics reported by (their newsletter is excellent):

• 80% of Instagram users currently follow a business account, according to 2017 data from Instagram.

• 75% of smartphone owners turn to a search engine first to address immediate needs, according to 2018 data from Google.

• Emails that don’t display clearly or correctly on mobile devices may be deleted within 3 seconds, according to 2018 data reported by HubSpot.

What can you do to make sure your customers find you early and often? You must understand where your customer is doing their research and what is influencing their decisions. Researching your product/service, target audience, and how you fare in your industry, is not a luxury. It is essential. Our new 2019 research guide outlines the easy and affordable steps you can take to make research a part of your future. Email me for a copy.

BUSINESSES NEED TO GET READY FOR GENERATION Z – Just when you thought you might be getting a handle on marketing to Millennials (now the largest market in America), here comes Generation Z – those ages 13 to 21. To keep the Millennial generation analytically meaningful, and to begin looking at what might be unique about the next group, Pew Research Center (PEW) decided last year to use 1996 as the last birth year for Millennials. Anyone born between 1981 and 1996 (ages 23 to 38 in 2019) is considered a Millennial. Anyone born from 1997 onward is now part of a new generation. PEW hesitated to give this new generation a name and looked at a variety of names: Generation Z, the iGeneration and Homelanders. But now Gen Z has taken hold in popular culture and journalism. Sources ranging from Merriam-Webster and Oxford to the Urban Dictionary now include this name for the generation that follows Millennials. This year we will be exploring how this generation will make Baby Boomers and Seniors even more uncomfortable with their view of the world.

NEW SERVICE – Just finished proofing and editing a major new website for a highly successful website designer. We have been doing proofing and copy editing for others too. That’s why we decided to officially launch a new service for 2019. Check it out here.

Until next week, thanks for reading. We started this blog three years ago. Since then, more than 10,000 people have read our blog. Thank you. I appreciate it. Always enjoy hearing comments or suggestions for topics.