Segments of One: How to Market to Generation Z

Segments of One: How to Market to Generation Z

Your prospective students in 2018 grew up and came of age with the tailored analytics of online streaming services, like Netflix, and retailers, like Amazon. That means these young people expect to be treated like individuals.

This is what Thom Golden, Capture Higher Ed’s senior vice president of data science, told New York Times reporter Laura Pappano for her Aug. 2 feature, “The iGen Shift: Colleges Are Changing to Reach the Next Generation”. In the story, Golden says group designations within the generation are evolving into “segments of one.”

At Capture, we have learned, thought and written a great deal about “the iGen shift,” although we typically refer to this new generation of college students as “Generation Z,” or “Gen Z” for short. In fact, just two days before the New York Times story was published, Capture presented a webinar titled, “Top Ways To Market to Generation Z.” Led by Capture marketing experts Jacqui Weishaar and Sean Hill, nearly 200 higher ed professionals tuned in for the webinar, which covered questions like:

  • Who is Gen Z?
  • What is it like to be Gen Z?
  •  What will make Gen Z want to go to college?
  • And how can you communicate effectively with Gen Z?

To answer that last question, Weishaar and Hill offer plenty of great insights and examples that revolve around being authentic, using student voices, communicating visually, encouraging students to connect through social media, focusing on affordability, meeting prospective students where they are (your website) and several more.

The webinar is an invaluable resource for anyone trying to reach this new generation of prospective students. But it’s only the most recent resource to help you market to Generation Z Capture has produced.

We think about this stuff a lot.

Earlier this year, Hill, who is a senior content writer at Capture, published his white paper, “Screen Time: Understanding Generation Z.” Also, Capture Communications Specialist Jenny Bencomo offered an array of helpful ideas in her white paper, “Hook Their Interest … And Keep It,” which dealt with “finding a place in an ever-shrinking attention span” of a young person.

Gen Z also has been a constant subject on Capture’s blog; just type “Generation Z” into the search bar and you will find a slew of helpful titles, from “Designing for Generation Z: Captivate Today’s Tech-Savvy Teens ” to “Communication with Generation Z: A ‘How To’ for Universities” to “Reaching Generation Z: Make Content They Will Watch and Share.”

Insights and ideas to help market to Generation Z even kicked off the Resolve Enrollment Technology Conference, Capture’s first-annual user conference in Louisville back in January. Our opening keynote speaker, Ryan Jenkins, gave a fascinating presentation titled, “Next Generation Engagement: Proven Strategies for Recruiting Gen Z.”

In the New York Times piece mentioned at the beginning of this blog, Pappano opens by pointing out that today’s college-bound students “are, of course, super connected. But on their terms. Which is why [they] present a challenge to the grown‑ups on campus eager to reach and teach them.”

It certainly is a challenge. But it’s a challenge that Capture Higher Ed can help you with. We think about this stuff a lot.

By Kevin Hyde, Senior Content Writer, Capture Higher Ed