Reaching Gen Z Through Vertical Content
Like reaching every generation, connecting with Gen Z takes some adaptation. According to Business Insider, about 64.6% of individuals surveyed, agreed to check Instagram daily, while YouTube and Snapchat, came in at 62.4% and 51.3% respectively. TikTok, a social media platform that focuses on videos and reels, has become a social media giant for Gen Z. It is reported that over “41% of Tik Tok users are between 16 and 24.”
Personally, I’m hesitant join another social media platform, but professionally, I’m all in. No one wants to be the old, outsider looking in.
I’m a marketing and communications specialist for a school within the University of Florida, so I use social media to connect with our key audiences.
I am constantly reaching out to our Gen Z and millennial generations through Instagram, particularly Instagram Stories. Roughly 78% of the school’s Instagram followers fall within those two demographics.
Right now, we are gearing up for recruitment efforts for our graduate programs. Since we do not have TikTok, I thought creating an Instagram Story would be the next best thing.
I have used Instagram Stories in the past, to promote new content, events coming up, but never for recruitment efforts. According to Higher Education Marketing, I should consider “[my] school’s events, [our] location, and the daily happenings on [my] campus for possible ideas.” They also advised to “look at the various features available, such as graphics, text overlays, and AR filters, and try to identify options that fit your school’s tone, character, and voice.”
Since this is an ongoing campaign, I have been able to create the tone in our email marketing and advertisements.
My three Instagram Story pieces are condensed into one video. I wanted to incorporate campus visuals, which I have done in my previous communications. I also wanted to make sure that messaging was the same.
The first piece is a call to action, also informing prospective students about our three graduate programs. The second piece is a reminder that the GRE is waived for Fall 2021 admissions. The final piece directs students to the page to learn more.
My key demographic for our recruitment campaign is students from 22 (who are undergraduate seniors) to 30 year olds.
I have learned that social media platforms are constantly becoming more influential in consumerism. Research shows “that 85% of Gen Z learns about new products on social media.”
This shows if we want to connect with the younger generations. We must be willing to meet them where they are.