Diary of a Gen-X’er Swimming With Gen-Zs
I’ve launched the Black Friday Daily app in the Apple Store 1/20/17, and since then added beauty, health and unique products while expanding our social media marketing. As I’m about to focus my attention on user acquisition (often the most difficult part), I thought I’d jot down some interesting observations I’ve made with GenZs and how I’ve seen it impact business.
— “Keep it Simple, Stupid” evolved to Keep it Short Stupid —DMs, phone calls, texts, etc… to exist in 150, 70 and 140 characters / grammatical errors and typoes are NP (“No Problem”) while always realizing these super-smart brains think before you speak and are expert multi-taskers. It’s OK and the norm to be on Smart Phones while on your laptop and tablet with a couple monitors from desktops humming at once during Hangouts or Slacks / combing through emails, jotting notes, and entering Trellos. If they’re not, then perhaps take it as a warning sign. Something may be wrong.
— “I don’t know this” and “I don’t understand that” don’t exist. Look it up, consume what you need to know as fast as you can because something else is heading down the pike and so be ready to jump to stay current. Don’t get too comfortable. And if you’re afraid to learn or worse, begin hate it — GET OUT NOW! You don’t belong here and the sooner you accept it, the better off you and everyone else will be.
— Social Media blurs the business / personal friendship line. Everyone wants more “friends” and “followers” and “likes.” Treat everyone (even strangers) on semi-equal footing. The separation of “The Big Untouchable Corporate State” and “The Common People” is outdated. Amassing “Friends” with a personal connection and being true to that definition (however distant) are so important. The customers will always will be Kings and with “Socialship” prevalent in our business landscape, treat them like royalty! I know befriending strangers is somewhat raw and an unfamiliar, especially growing up in an age when people didn’t really want their pictures taken so look how far you’ve come as you’ve had to embrace the Selfie. ;)
— Emojis and ;) :) :0 are OK and encouraged — even when conducting business. So glad I got over this personal pet-peeve. Sorry, Larry David; yes, this is “where we are headed.”
— Smart Phones never stop the work-clock. Remember when they hit the market? Billboards showed a suited man on his “car phone” with the caption, “You could be working right now.” This phrase was such a turn-off, right? Because who wouldn’t rather zone-out to a great tune while stuck in traffic?!!
— Embrace, Engage and Enjoy real-time marketing across different time-zones, spanning the globe. It’s like performing in a play. You instantly know what works — and what doesn’t and adjust, depending on the data. Don’t be afraid to fail and who really cares about “glitches?” You’ll be forgiven and it’s soon forgotten as people move onto the next post/blog/feed. Remember, when an idea gives you those butterflies in your belly before hitting the “Send button” — it’s a good sign. You’re onto something.
— Planning, preparation and being cautious are still important, but learn how to cut the time in half or you’ll get swept into a current and pulled off-course or worse, lose people’s interest in this vast cornucopia of consumption. (Added 5/1) Continue to embrace and expect problems and never fear bugs and hot fixes.
Differences between the X and Z are challenging at times, but it’s great and magical when you’ve found that sweet middle-ground spot. For the most part, they are fearless! They are non-judgemental! They have an insatiable appetite to satisfy their curiosity. There’s so much more to discover… But guess what, GenZ? Soon, you’ll be on the other end, trying to keep up with… GenA?
I hope readers hit the Heart on this Medium post and spread the love @thebfdapp @debramooradian. Butterflies aplenty — until we meet again…