There have been a lot of lessons learned in 2020, and one of them is how adaptable people can be. Baby Boomers, who previously prioritized shopping in person, suddenly went online for groceries, and Gen Zers, who previously only danced on TikTok, turned the popular app into a hub for news and information during multiple global events. New behaviors and habits emerged across generations, and brands that stayed agile were able to connect with their audiences as their behaviors evolved.
Shifting Cultural Norms In 2020 Led Generations To Adapt Differently
The story of how consumers and brands evolved to survive and thrive in 2020 will be told for many years to come, with the tale likely to include many twists and turns. There wasn’t one solution to any problem, and audiences more accustomed to hunkering down (looking at you Gen X) approached quarantine with different attitudes than Millennials stuck at home with young kids. How brands met varying needs, with products, services and relatable digital advertising campaigns, is likely to make a difference moving forward into the next year when the focus transitions to repeat business and brand loyalty. Obviously, many generations share similarities, but the distinctive characteristics of generational groups can offer opportunities for brands to make lasting impressions.
Here is a roundup of DMS Insights articles that portray recent trends in digital advertising across generations.
Gen Xers grew up fending for themselves and making the best of boring situations, which may have uniquely prepared them for life in a pandemic. The latchkey kids of the eighties were the generation most ready for stay-at-home orders that allowed more time for video games, eating processed foods and catching up on favorite TV shows.
The pandemic accelerated the interest of brands in the buying power and influence of Baby Boomers. Although early on it was Gen X that quickly settled into staying at home and the new behaviors quarantining required, Baby Boomers also adjusted their previously preferred habits to embrace online shopping, at-home delivery options and virtual experiences.
Throughout 2020, younger consumers turned to social media for news and connection as crises on multiple fronts urged them to become more involved as activists and citizens. During this same period, many brands partnered with apps like TikTok to create relatable, authentic content for Gen Z consumers who heavily scrutinize the social responsibility values of brands.
Millennials are the largest living generation with the greatest purchasing power; they are extremely tech savvy and tech reliant, and more than a million Millennials have become moms since 2016. This is a generation that asks a lot from brands and wants the best, most efficient tools for all their daily tasks, including raising kids. During the pandemic, Millennial parents turned to online platforms for help with everything from homeschooling to emotional well-being.
For more advertising news from DMS Insights about consumers adapting during COVID-19, click here.
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