“What’s this, mom?”
I turn and look.
My three-year-old, who is playing in my husband’s car, holds up a CD that she found under the passenger seat.
Despite the fact that we’re a family of music lovers, she doesn’t know what it is because she’s never seen one before. We listen to music daily, but always on the phone or the computer. Our CD player is accumulating dust in the basement.
I suppose, in my daughter’s experience, music is just everywhere, always. She can request a specific song and I can play it for her within seconds.
She doesn’t like it very much when my response is “We’re listening to the radio right now. I can’t make it play whatever you want.”
“Why?”, she asks, genuinely confused.
Her expectation is to be able to hear what she wants, when she wants it. She’s just a preschooler, but her questions represent the reality of Generation Z.
These kids, born mid 1990s- early 2010s have never known life without the internet. And they’re not exactly kids anymore, either—the oldest members of Gen Z can legally drink.
Whether you’re a college or an elementary school, you have members of Generation Z roaming your halls. Do you know who they are? Take some time and ask yourself:
- Do you understand what it means to be them?
- Do you understand what their expectations are?
- Are you communicating using the channels and formats that they actually use?
- What do they care about?
- What do you offer that they can connect with?
- What do they want from you?
- How can you deliver on all of this?
When you understand the big picture— the generation of students you’re targeting—you can begin to refine your marketing methods and tactics and start telling a story that connects with your audience.
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