Just as we’re getting to grips with millennials, and beginning to understand the way in which they consume TV, a new generation is here: Generation Z! And we’re told that they are going to change television. Just like every other generation before them!

So who are Generation Z? Born after 1995, they have grown up streaming television. As such, according to a study by Hulu and Tremor Video, 70% of Generation Z say the phrase “watching television” means streaming content online so, to them, there is no distinction between live television, premium cable, streaming services or YouTube channels. Whatever it is, and whatever device you watch it on, it’s just TV to them. So what are the main reasons Generation Z watches ‘TV’? They say:

  1. “To talk about it with peers”
  2. “To impress others”
  3. “To look smart”

So with this in mind, if we want to engage this new generation we must take the following into consideration.

They want to be Social – they don’t sit still on the couch and simply watch one screen with no other interaction. They want to participate, comment and see what others have to say about the content. For them, if no one is talking about a show, no one is watching it.

We must Capture their attention quickly. With so much information impacting them all the time and coming from many sources, we must grab their attention as quickly and easily as possible. For example, instead of giving them full length episodes, offer them a short, cut-down “viewer’s digest”. This can easily be shared and allows those who haven’t committed to watching an entire series to be a part of the online conversation. They can then choose to dig deeper if and when they want.

We also need to Be Authentic. This generation is about being personal and relatable, therefore they are more attracted to content that feels real! And a big part of being real is having influencers participating in some way on your content. Why? Because these ‘real people’ have built massive followings by believing and listening to their opinions. 60% of this generation prefer to see engage with ‘real’ people — people they can relate to — rather than with celebrities. Their favorite vlogger is probably more entertaining than any network comedy.
It’s not about how many awards a show has but more about if the people they follow are tweeting about it. It’s the Twitter generation!

I’ll leave you with this fact from a recent Media Survey: “YouTube is a must-have service for 67% of consumers aged 13-24, while only 36% cite traditional TV” (Source: Defy Media).

Now that’s food for thought!!

This is the latest in a series of posts from MIPCOM 2017’s MIPBlog Ambassadors, a group of industry experts coordinated by consultant Debbie Macdonald, who’ll be sharing their insight here in the run-up to MIPCOM this October. Stay tuned for more!

About Author

Sergio Sancho is founder and managing director at Phileas Productions.

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