Gen Alpha: A New Generation of Consumers
You’ve heard about the millennial generation for the past decade. Nowadays, millennial consumers aren’t teenagers looking for the hottest new product. Many of them are having their first children, ushering in a new generation: Gen Alpha.
With the evolution of the millennial generation comes a litany of new consumers. They may be children now, but Generation Alpha will have some of the most educated and technologically-savvy consumers ever. As a marketer, you’ve got options. Gen Alpha has unprecedented access to technology. Because of that, reaching this new generation has become simultaneously easier and more difficult than ever.
Bridging a Generational Gap
This demographic of children currently serves as a second-hand consumer. Their needs – food, shelter, entertainment, and more – must be met by millennial parents. To market to Generation Alpha, we must market toward millennial parents.
Even so, is there something we should fear from the process of “consumer grooming?” Generation Alpha is, after all, still young enough to be impressionable. We all want to drive sales—but what impact do products and advertisements have on this younger demographic?
No, it’s not a small business’s responsibility to teach a child the details of ethical consumerism. However, it’s the responsibility of small businesses – and any business looking to cultivate Generation Alpha’s interest – to build responsible brand loyalty. That means providing them (and their parents) with products and brands that will stand the test of time.
Marketing Toward Generation Alpha
How do we strike the balance between millennial-parent and Generation Alpha appeal? For the moment, focus on the age group. Design content and advertisements that place value on childcare and development.
For a great example, look at the Fitbit Ace. As a tech product geared for a younger demographic, it offers value that children can use. The device tracks a child’s activity levels at school and at home and promotes more time outside right along with brand familiarity.
Appealing to the pillars of a strong childhood is just one way your product and brand can make its way into Generation Alpha’s homes—before the competition.
The Boons of Generation Alpha
With that in mind, how do we go about reaching Generation Alpha and their parents?
- AI Familiarity: Generation Alpha is set to be as familiar with Cortana, Siri, and Alexa as they are with distant relatives. As such, future marketers need to utilize the kind of question-oriented keywords (and Bing SEO) that AI will be able to use to find their content.
- Social Media Savvy: Millennial consumers may be tech natives, but Generation Alpha doubles down on that lifestyle integration. These consumers are growing up in a world where in-home AI is common and social media is a part of life. Just consider how many children, like those part of the English Royal Family, already have social media accounts. While they don’t operate these accounts independently, the accounts’ presence suggests a kind of social media literacy that older generations have no way of keeping up with. Future marketers will be expected to interact with accounts of this sort to sell their products.
- Influencer Trust: Where Tony Hawk once served as a sales icon, influencers such as Ryan ToysReview – a child YouTube star – now stand. In the age of the influencer, marketers are going to need to reach out to online presence young and old to generate product trust within their consumer audience.
Generation Alpha is on the rise. Are you prepared to meet them?
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