The Gen Z Playbook

The Gen Z Playbook by business intelligence service PSFK decodes Gen Z’s changing priorities and provides a strategic framework that brands and retailers can use to redesign their brand experiences for this new generation of consumers.

The 50+ page report presents 8 trends that represent key opportunities to activate Gen Z consumers, supported by 24 best-in-class case studies and quantitative and qualitative consumer insights collected from the Gen Z Survey, a survey of over 1,000 consumers conducted by PSFK and our quant research partner Suzy.

This survey shows a generation of true digital natives that perceives the world through a unique lens, moving seamlessly between the online and offline worlds and naturally embracing digital technology as a tool for self-expression, community building, entrepreneurship and social change.

The Gen Z Playbook by PSFK shows how forward-thinking brands are aligning with Gen Z’s values and building platforms that invite authentic engagement and foster long-term relationships.

Business intelligence platform PSFK found that there are key trends defining how Gen Z structure their identities, communities and personal goals. Those trends include:

Synced Living: Using immersive platforms to socialize and collaborate with friends, using shared real-time experiences to enhance, not replace, real life relationships

Democratized Commerce: Embracing peer-driven marketplaces that enable individuals to market and sell their favored products and services to like-minded audiences

In addition to the trends research, by working with polling partner Suzy, the research companies surveyed Gen Z and Millennial consumers and found the following consumer insights that tapped into the trends:

  Their mantra is ‘Be Yourself’: Open-mindedness is the top generational trait for Gen Z, with 36% choosing it as the adjective that best describes their generation. This is an 8% increase over Millennials.

  They live online and offline simultaneously: 34% of Gen Z say ‘my online and offline selves are very similar’ and 29% ‘see no difference between my online and offline selves.’

  They’re forging their own paths: 55% of Gen Z feel that their generation is more entrepreneurial than previous generations.

  They seek brands whose purpose aligns with theirs: When asked to choose the most important trait for a brand to have, 58% of Gen Z choose a brand’s purpose, values & mission, making it their #1 most important trait, whereas Millennials rank it as their third most important trait.

The 50+ page report includes:

  • 8 trends that represent key opportunities to activate Gen Z consumers, supported by 24 best-in-class case studies
  • 6 strategic recommendations that brands and retailers can implement to transform the brand experience for Gen Z
  • Quantitative and qualitative results from the Gen Z Survey, an original survey of 1,000 consumers conducted by PSFK and Suzy, the real-time consumer polling platform, that provide key insights into the Gen Z consumer mindset and a breakdown of the brands, apps and platforms that they favor
Additional content:

  • Summary presentation deck in PDF
  • Summary presentation deck in Keynote
  • Gen Z Survey Results PDF

REQUEST INFORMATION

Please provide your details so we can respond with more information about this report.

Insights From The Gen Z Playbook

Interview How Sift's Innovative 'News Therapy' Experience Is Keeping Readers Up To Date Mindfully

PSFK chats with a co-founder of Sift, a news app experience that aims to inform younger readers without adding to their stress, helping them contextualize, navigate and digest current events calmly and thoughtfully as well as curb disengagement

Interview Universal Standard Is Connecting With Shoppers Through Inclusivity And Acceptance

PSFK sits down with Universal Standard's co-founder, whose beloved brand is the most size-inclusive brand on the market, about building community and rethinking ecommerce

Analysis How Brands Like Dote Are Further Blurring Retail, Entertainment And Socialization

From live influencer-led shopping parties to marketplaces that connect peers in real time, today's democratized commerce platforms are enabling more meaningful, socially-driven transactions

Interview How Rec Room Is Providing Digital-First Audiences A Space To Build Relationships

The CEO of the VR platform that allows people from all over the world to connect with each other in user-designed rooms and games tells PSFK about creating meaningful social experiences thanks to cutting-edge creative tech

Analysis How Immersive Platforms Like Twitch Are Uniting Communities Online

From livestreamed karaoke to mobile VR gaming, immersive digital platforms are helping consumers enjoy meaningful social experiences online

Interview Expert Insight: How Birchbox's Inclusive Rebrand Helps It Connect With Purpose-Driven Consumers

The subscription box is making self-care more accepting with genderless categories that promote inclusivity and naturally attract consumers like Gen Zers who look for mission-driven brands

Interview Why A Human-Focused Fitness Platform Launched A Digital Coach

In a bid to better meet the needs of today's mobile and digital-first consumers, Aaptiv launched a virtual trainer service that helps members achieve their goals on their own terms

Analysis How Brands Like Gucci Are Personalizing Digital Communication With Customizable Avatars

In step with the way Gen Z consumers spend their time, leading brands are investing in elevated and personalized virtual communication methods like digital avatars, also opening up new opportunities for retailers to engage with digital-first audiences

Related CX Insights

Brand Activation & Immersion PSFK Retail Conference Preview: Nike Adventure Club's GM On Using Subscriptions To Solve Consumer Pain Points

Prior to taking the stage at PSFK's Future of Retail 2020 Conference, Dave Cobban speaks about designing a service that adds value to consumers' everyday lives—and solves longstanding pain points within children's apparel retail

Beauty Why The Next Decade Has The Potential To Be The Most Inclusive Yet

After a year of progress, inclusivity is poised to change the face of retail and beyond. Here's how the industry is implementing next-gen tech and innovation to enable diverse and flexible experiences that accommodate all

Food & Beverage The Sam's Club Now app unlocks a personalized and responsive shopping experience using machine learning and data

Warehouse club retailer Sam’s Club is incubating new retail technologies centered around its Sam's Club Now app that let members unlock a more personalized and responsive shopping experience. Machine learning and purchase data automatically generate shopping lists with suggested items, and beacon technology helps guide members through the store. Members can use the app to scan items to pay without waiting in line, as well as place orders for one-hour pick up. The features are currently being tested in its Dallas, Texas, test store before being rolled out nationwide.

Delivery & Logistics Harvey Norman X Microsoft's AI assistant lets shoppers begin their journey online and complete purchase in-store

Australian retailer Harvey Norman became the world’s first retailer to launch the Microsoft Synchronized Shopping solution, an AI-powered retail software concept from technology company Microsoft that facilitates a seamless online and offline experience. Shoppers who visit the Harvey Norman website can access an AI-powered product advisor who guides them through a series of questions in order to assess their individual needs and recommend Microsoft laptops and other devices that best suit them. Once the shoppers have selected a short list of devices, the website creates a shopper pass that is stored in their Apple Wallet or Google Pay app on their mobile device, which uses geo-location to push a phone notification once they enter the store, guiding them to the location of the PC models that were recommended by the online advisor.

Fashion & Apparel Nike and U.K. retailer 'Size ?' partner on personalized store experience powered by HERO

Sportswear brand Nike partnered with UK retailer size? to enable size? store associates to connect with online customers using the Hero platform in order to provide real-time assistance and advice on Nike products. Shoppers on the size? website can click an icon on any Nike product page to be connected to an in-store associate, enabling them to message and livestream in order to provide additional product information, stock availability, sizing guidance and styling advice. Shoppers can also book an in-store appointment for further assistance. Nike has trained over 50 associates at size? across 14 locations in the UK and France.

Shopper Education & Assistance Stitch Fix's machine learning helps personal stylists improve recommendations

Online personal styling service Stitch Fix uses AI and machine learning to provide its human stylists with insights that improve their recommendations to clients. By analyzing inventory patterns, Stitch Fix’s AI is able to uncover patterns in product fit and performance, such as 90% of customers reporting that an item is too small, and share these insights with the stylists in order to make better recommendations to their customers.

Hotels, Hospitality & Travel Orlando Intenational Airport pilots facial recognition to reduce travel time

Orlando International Airport is piloting automated facial recognition technology to streamline the travel experience. The face-scanning technology formulates a biometric sketch of passengers that is stored in a private cloud to be matched to the traveler in an effort to cut down on boarding times. The technology is set to debut before the end of the year.