Specialist’s editorial intern, Chloe Allen, shares insights into what Generation Z really want, and how our idea of phone-obsessed content consumers may need to change…
‘Generation Z’ were born somewhere between the mid-90s and 2000s, and have officially taken the place of the ‘Millennials’ we have become so used to hearing about.
We are often portrayed as being glued to our mobile devices, eager to consume content on the go, and navigating our lives through our location settings.
But Gen Z are proving that this is far from the case.
Those of us who fall under this age cohort are bucking the idea of phone-obsessed 20-somethings, showing that there is more to our generation than meets the eye.
A day in the life
As someone who falls under the Generation Z bracket, I consider my relationship with social media to be a healthy one. I use online platforms to gain practical tips, to communicate when it’s more convenient, and for professional development to help me reach my goals.
This is how my day runs, as a Gen Zer.
It’s important to rise early in the morning, and on my daily commute I listen to a podcast so that I’m up to date with current affairs, or to make sure I’m clued-up about the trending world of true crime.
I use this time to put my phone away in the traditional sense, have a cup of coffee, and take in the world around me.
Time for a quick scroll.
Before I get down to work, I find that just before 9am is the perfect time to see what’s been happening since activating sleep mode.
Health bloggers and influencers have probably completed a full work-out, read a book for an hour and a half and had their green smoothie and supplements by this time. Although I’m not quite there yet, it’s nice to feel like I’m nourishing my soul even if it’s through the screen of my phone.
If I’m not meeting friends for lunch, or going to the gym, I’ll probably check-in with the social media apps I use the most. LinkedIn is a popular choice if it’s in the middle of my working day, so I can keep up to date with colleagues.
On Instagram, I’ve become a fan of micro-blogging. Instead of committing to a long form feature, I can keep up-to-date with the values and adventures of my favourite celebrities, influencers and friends.
My particular favourites are Glossier and Pebble Magazine. These brands encourage their followers to adopt a more sustainable and ethically conscious way of living, and promote body confidence, which mirrors my own values.
When I’m on my way home, I find that Twitter is the best way of getting a fast fix of news. It’s definitely more appealing than a standard news app because it’s concise, poppy and the restricted character count ensures it’s always relevant. Sometimes I look for dinner inspiration and new things to try. Applications like these allow me to access the content for free, which is always a plus.
Celebrity chefs such as Tom Kerridge and Joe Wicks are great follows for culinary inspiration, as they enable you to learn about cooking and nutrition on the go.
Hopefully by this time I’ve had my evening meal and I’m either watching a film, catching up with daily tasks or I’m socialising with friends.
If I have friends around or if I’m out and about, we have taken to putting our phones in the middle of the table so that we aren’t scrolling through social media.
This is a great time to talk about our days, our goals, the things we’re looking forward to, or the music we like.
This is time of day I value the most. I often use this time to read a book or take a bath.
Sometimes I catch up with people abroad over FaceTime, as quite often this is the best opportunity because of the time difference.
Lights out. I need my sleep, and rely less on my daily caffeine intake if I’ve had a restful night.
I find that my work performance is better and I’m happier and more upbeat if I treat my body in the right way.
Many of those who, like me, fall under Gen Z, are emerging into the workplace for the first time and are using social media to their advantage.
We are looking for opportunities and investing in our futures influenced by the positive brands we observe, and the content we consume.
So, move over Millennials, Generation Z are here to make their mark.