3 Ways Brands Can Improve Social Media Engagement with Teens Right Now

Matt Hay

May 2018

3 Ways Brands Can Improve Social Media Engagement with Teens Right Now

One of the most common questions we get – even from brands who have enjoyed social media success –  is what they can do right now to improve their social engagement. So, without diving deep into strategy, tactics, budgets, and other realities, our response is often to start with the following three questions:


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How Tailored Is the Brand Content, Really?

Brands understand the need to be relevant to their customers, but few reexamine their content through the eyes of Gen Z. A brand should ask:

• Does this content address the Gen Z’s needs, wants, likes, and dislikes?
• Might the content initiate Gen Z to create content of their own and what is the likelihood it will be shared?
• Has the content been developed to be channel specific?

Brand should strive to create content that will inspire without selling, including providing non-promotional, multi-channel content that aligns with Gen Z values. (NewsCred Insights)


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Is the Brand Using Micro-influencers?

When brands post content directly, Gen Z can feel “marketed to.” Alternatively, micro-influencers can create similar content on behalf of a brand and distribute to their communities. “The power of bloggers and micro-influencers, people whose follower count ranges from about 500 to 10,000, can dramatically increase a brand’s presence online. These smaller influencers are effective because of their close relationships to their tight, loyal, hyper-targeted communities.” (Inc.) (Our own experience is that engagement peaks when the influencer has around 1,000 followers.)

Micro-influencers produce higher engagement because they are:

• Credible with their audience (starting with using the brands they are promoting)
• Vocal supporters of the brand
• Have an audience that’s willing to take action

Brands considering using micro-influencers can start by using hand-picked followers already on their social channels.


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Has the Brand Made Its Social “Shoppable?”

Shoppable social, driving consumers to make purchases through social platforms, is the natural evolution from simple user engagement to generating sales success. A main driver of this movement is that 85% of Gen Z say they learn about new products through social media.

Consider the data:
• Gen Z social media shoppers report that Facebook (61%) and Instagram (47%) were the most popular platforms on which to find new products
• 74% of Gen Z follow brands on social to find out about special deals, reviews or instructional videos
• Gen Z is 4x more likely to convert on social media than Millennials

While today’s shoppable social experience is far from frictionless, progress is being made. As many brands already know, Instagram shopping posts allow users to quickly tap on a post to view product pricing and details and, with just a few additional taps, purchase a product through the Instagram app. But with 10 billion video views per day (and most of those by teens and young adults), the even bigger disruption is likely coming from Snapchat.


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Final Action Items

To improve tailored content, consider Gen Z’s positive attitudes toward tutorials, sponsored events, and advertorials. (Marketing Land)

If you want to expand your campaign beyond your current followers, consider using tools like BuzzSumoKlear and Ninja Outreach to identify more micro-influencers.

When it comes to shoppable social, look into Snapchat’s new Shoppable AR Lens that lets advertisers enhance their lenses with a “Buy Now,” “Watch” or “Install Now” button. With it, branded snaps turn into a potential purchase, video view, or app download.

Please contact us if we can answer any questions.