Have you been called a boomer on the Internet?
If yes, then you know your generation is no longer the largest consumer pool.
The current generation holds a huge population of the early ’90s born people called millennials and 2000’s born people called Gen-Z. The millennials and the zoomers are the children of the internet who witnessed the rise of technology, going wireless, the shrinking cell phones, and eventually AirPods.
1. Who are the Millennials?
2. Who are the Gen-Z?
3. Why are brands catering to the Millennials and the Gen-Z?
It is important to know the difference between the two consumer groups because they are often used interchangeably. Millennials are already adults and set onto their earning journey, whereas the Zoomers are stepping into adulthood. The millennials were born between 1980-1995. They are the first global generation that grew up during the age of the Internet. Everything that is excelling now in technology and goods were first tried and expanded by the millennials. These digital natives are educated on the technology, survived the great recession and recently the Covid-19 pandemic. The millennials were in fact the largest consumer group and the largest employed group when the Covid-19 pandemic plagued us all. They were the most impacted in terms of economy, employment, and consumer.
People born between 1996-2010 are referred to as zoomers or Gen-Z. This is the next generation in line after the millennials. They were born and cradled into digital transformation. This generation had a Facebook account even before reaching high school. They consume information off the internet and the newspaper is obsolete. This generation is spoiled for choice and is at the cusp of adulthood. They are the young adults who are just finishing their education, learning about the world, choosing a career, or just about to vote.
As these two groups are becoming the largest adult population, it is obvious that they are money spenders. In other words, this is the group of people who have the spending capacity, and the decision-making power right now. This is the current audience and their expectations are far different from what we saw in our parents or elders. They expect fast service, self-service options, diverse opportunities, and a lot more. Let’s find out how different are the customer service expectations of each of these groups.
Being held between nostalgic comfort and fast-paced growth, millennials always prefer the best of both worlds. They want fast-paced service but not at the cost of transparency. They might not read terms and conditions after downloading an app, but they are thorough when purchasing a product. They are the first generation to witness the prowess of the internet, however, most of them spent their childhoods without any access to it. This is why they need to engage with your brand to know how you drive value. If they want a TV, they can buy it from Sony, LG or any other brand. The price won’t be much different either. What they seek is quality service, warranty leverage, and more.
While most millennials will admit to like self-service, they will not avert to agent-assisted support like their forefathers. They value AI-driven technology but they also prefer the personalization offered via face-to-face communication. They want a business that will care to offer assurance. As a matter of fact, Digital Commerce 360 conducted a survey to find out that around 40% of millennials still prefer a physical store over online shopping. This doesn’t eradicate the fact that 60% still prefer online purchasing. This only goes to show how they want the comfort of the modern and the old world.
Gen-Z is a more tolerant customer pool. They are not as emotionally driven as the millennials. While the millennials care for personalization, and hand-held assistance. The zoomers on the other hand prefer complete autonomy driven by technology. They have their own channel preferences and appreciate minimal human interference until it's deemed necessary.
They rely on their internet served data for analyzing everything. Most decisions they make are influenced by the content on the internet. In fact, 60% of Gen-Z audiences in the US discover new products or businesses through Instagram. They make most of their transactions online through wallets or UPIs. They are so mobile-driven that they literally roam around cashless. This shows that they have a different set of expectations from businesses.
Being born into a generation of internet natives, zoomers also analyze the quality of a brand through their social stances. It is very important for businesses to become socially active, politically inclusive, and grow charitable. The Gen-Z audience has a keen eye for such immersive experiences and seeks the same in every customer interaction.
Despite the difference in choice or emotions, there is one thing in common between them: choice of channels or customer touchpoints. Both of them being digital natives prefers interacting with brands on different channels. Some prefer IVR, while others will choose social media. They expect to communicate on their preferred channel, without which their experience is already disrupted.
When they do communicate with your brand on any platform, they demand a well-integrated experience. They expect that the context will be retained across platforms and wouldn’t be an issue for the customer service. An omnichannel communication can deliver context, record data for future use, and deliver personalization which is expected of you.
The tech-savvy generations are here and they want to interact with brands at any time. They can be scrolling through your website hoping to place an order at 3 AM. This is why equipping your business channels with adequate assistance reduces pain points by understanding their journey. Invest in universal communication through omnichannel and CRM Integration. Deploy chatbots and virtual agents to improve self-service options. All in all, modernize your contact center to meet these new-age needs. Interestingly, the behavior of the digital natives (unlike their predecessors) is showing similar behavior across different geographies. So companies that are global will have to apply similar CX solutions, worldwide.
Author Bio: Sweta is a passionate technical writer with an experience in digital marketing. Outside work, she is a devoted Esports advocate.