Charities can only keep doing what they do thanks to the generosity of the general public. But as we head through the years and decades, we see new generations step up and become the majority. It happened with Millennials and it’s happening now with Gen Z. These are children born in the 21st century, surrounded by technology. And they just so happen to be the most generous generation.
Gen Z and Millennials account for 11.1 million donors, contributing £2.7 billion a year to the third sector. They’re not necessarily just donating monetarily. In fact, only 26% of this group donate money. But they make up for it through volunteer work, word of mouth, and peer-to-peer fundraising such as fun runs and sponsorships.
As more and more of Gen Z age up and become adults, they’re only going to become more important to the sector. So what can you do to engage with Gen Z?
Transparency is key
Gen Z is very tapped into what matters, which is likely why they’re so engaged with charitable giving. They know climate change is a problem, along with issues such as plastic pollution. And this reflects in their habits.
51% of Gen Z shop with brands that align with their own values. And they’re a sceptical bunch who don’t value brand loyalty as highly as previous generations. So your charity needs to be transparent. They will have grown up seeing big news stories about charities that betrayed that trust. So be honest.
One way to do this? Show them behind the scenes. Don’t be a faceless entity; bring the faces behind your charity to the forefront. Build that human connection. Social media is a great place to do this. Speaking of which…
Meet them where they’re at
This is marketing 101 really, but to engage with Gen Z you need to be where they are. And that’s likely social media. They’re more drawn to video-centred platforms, such as Instagram, Snapchat, and the big one right now – TikTok. 91% prefer video content to traditional marketing methods.
It’s a great way to build a sense of community, and why 59% of users are there in the first place. So if you’re not on it already, maybe give it a go? See what trends you can jump on. The important point here is to not be – as the kids call it – “cringe”. That’s when you try too hard to be cool. Instead, be natural and follow the last point about being transparent. Educate, don’t sell. Show them real stories of real people.
Gen Z (and Millennials) also prefer to support local businesses. So if you’re a smaller, more locally focused charity, trying to reach out via social media could pay off handsomely.
Focus on sustainability
According to one report, 73% of Gen Z are willing to pay more for sustainable products. And 55% choose brands specifically because they’re eco-friendly and socially responsible. This is a perfect fit for charities, as your whole model is built around sustainability.
Secondhand clothes are, by their very nature, sustainable. This is something you can tap into, especially with your social media presence. Why not post about a particular vintage find from one of your shops? Or see if you can work with an influencer to boost your profile? After all, 65% of Gen Z have bought something because of an influencer’s recommendation.
Those are our 3 biggest tips for improving how you engage with Gen Z. There’s a tendency to look at other generations as this unknowable entity. But they aren’t. They’re just normal people who value honesty and socially conscious ideals. Engaging with them isn’t about being cool in their eyes; it’s about showing you care in the same ways they do. If you can do that, you’re golden.
Make sure your charity is in the 21st century. 68% of Gen Z want some level of convenience when shopping in-store. So make sure you’re ready. CHARiotWeb is an EPoS solution designed specifically for the charity sector and makes shopping simple and pain-free. Book a demo today, or get in touch on 01204 706000.