As Gen Z ages into the ultimate arbiter of content, culture, careers, commerce, and more, we’re excited to unpack the shared truths of 268 Gen Zers rewriting not only the rules but also our reality.
From matcha to Boba, we’re always ones to raise a glass. We seek inspiration in celebration, and find few things as fulfilling as unpacking trends. With this summer’s Barbietopia inspiring us all to reflect upon our own identities, values, and dreams, we at Redpoint began to wonder what shared truths might shape the world ahead and found ourselves continuing to come back to the role that the coming of age Gen Z will play in transforming the world as we know it.
We were eager to get to know them – their habits, their priorities, their passions, and their fears. From how they shop and save to what they want out of their families and careers, their beliefs were foundational in enabling us to form a better understanding of who they are and what future they’re welcoming in.
Our insights were derived from a quantitative cross-sectional survey of 268 US consumers ages 13 to 26, with the age range skewing 18+. The structured, self-administered questionnaire totaled 103 questions across eight sections that mirrored the subsections of our report: identity, education, career ambitions, existential concerns, wellness, content / culture, finances, and purchasing considerations. Redpoint partnered with Centiment, a third party research provider, to deploy the survey electronically from 7/2/2023-7/7/2023. In soliciting responses, Centiment used a stratified random sampling technique to ensure representative demographic sampling across gender, race, ethnicity, and sexual orientation. Across the 268 participants surveyed, the results yielded a 94% confidence level and a 6% margin of error.
The results of this survey are broken down by section and presented in the reports below through a series of tables, charts, and associated insights. Much of what we uncovered surprised us. From their perspectives on family formation to their emphasis on economic opportunity, Gen Zers march to the beat of their own drum – and not to the tune that the media has written for them. As you too look for answers in the tea leaves of this animated and eclectic generation, we invite you to settle in as we spill some tea on Gen Z…
As with most data-driven insights, we recognize that the “who” behind our report is instrumental in understanding the “what.” To lay the foundation, below we share a breakdown of our survey respondents so that you can better understand who they are before unpacking our report.
As Gen Z comes of college age, they aren’t adapting to their educational environments – they’re expecting their environments to conform to their needs. They are eager to act and expect their educational journeys to be equally as action oriented. By marrying their educational and entertainment experiences, this generation dreams of a world where the learners of both today and tomorrow are empowered to learn not only what’s written in the stale textbooks of generations past but also about the transformational topics shaping the society around them. As class is called into session, check out our latest learnings on their educational interests and learning habits below.
As a generation committed to fighting for what they believe they deserve, Gen Z’s professional ambitions over index towards economic upside, ethical alignment, and the elusive quest for balance they crave longer term. Yet, their preferred paths might surprise you. For these always-on self-starters, social media serves as their professional platform of choice, whether they’re on the hunt for their next job, sharpening their skills, or creating content for commercial means. As this generation ages into the workforce, learn more about what the future of work looks like from their eyes and where they might be guiding us all from here.
While Gen Z is far less hands-on than the media leads us to believe when it comes to directly addressing the global issues that keep them up at night, they’re quick – and assertive – in holding corporates and governments accountable for the problems they’ve seemingly caused. The emotional burden of these issues weighs on Gen Z considerably, who feel near constant anxiety over the precarious positioning these geopolitical, climate, and social concerns create for their futures. To better understand the ethical and existential priorities, perceptions, and struggles of this generation, check out the data-derived insights we unpack below.
Wellness is far more than a hobby for Gen Z – it’s a lifelong pursuit. As the loneliest generation, Gen Zers view happiness and holistic health as intertwined, and they are actively allocating their time and dollars accordingly. With the app-ification of healthcare access to their DIY approach to care coordination, this generations’ health journey looks unlike any other we’ve seen. Curious to better understand what wellness and wellbeing truly mean to these citizen scientists? Read on for more in the following section.
The three C’s – Content, Connection, & Culture – are rarely far from Gen Z’s mind. For this emerging generation, while consuming content has never been easier with today’s ongoing explosion of mobile and micro-video streaming, their hyperdigital accessibility may come at a higher (and, in their eyes, unjustified) cost to their wellbeing. As a result, we’re witnessing a sharp pendulum swing in what they want out of their online interactions, their relationships, and their lives. In order to better understand their ongoing quest to prioritize authentic connection and accessibility, we unpack Gen Z’s (somewhat surprising) American Dream below.
Does Gen Z have the building blocks for a prosperous financial future? Even with 2 out of 3 Gen Zers investing and affordability emerging as a top generational priority, the cards, in their minds, are stacked against the Zoomers. The cost-of-living crisis has forced this generation’s hand, and while they are optimistic about the U.S.’ economic future, they’re pessimistic about their own. Improving financial literacy and minimizing debt look like Gen Z’s ticket to a better financial future, but only time – and the report below – will tell.
As a generation defined by constant consumption, Gen Z wants to have their cake and eat it too when it comes to the economic, ethical, and aesthetic alignment of their purchases. Chronically online, Gen Zers are more likely to purchase off of social media and create free promotional content, but also present a challenging flight risk for brands as they perennially hunt for newness and novelty. With their obsession with gamified, immersive, and identity-aligned experiences, Zoomers are pushing brands towards greater personalization and ethical assertions than ever before. So, are these expectations sustainable or at risk of being cut from next season’s wardrobe? Find out more about Gen Z’s complex commerce considerations below.
As arguably more diverse, independent, and inclined towards action than any prior generation, we have little doubt that Gen Z will play an active role in rewriting not only the rules but also their own reality. We’ve seen it in our family, been inspired by it in our friends, and continued to watch its growing influence across every corner of society. From our neighborhoods to the national stage, Gen Z is quickly growing into the ultimate curator of content, community, and culture – and we could not be more excited (albeit a touch terrified…) to see where they lead us next.
If you’re building for this dynamic demographic or are as inspired by the world they’re bringing forth as we are, we’d love to hear from you. Find us on Twitter at @Redpoint or subscribe for more of our musings on consumers’ personal and professional pursuits here.
Special thanks to our incredible intern, Walker Williams, for her help in bringing this dream and data to life. Without her dedication, data analysis, and demographic insights, this report would not have been possible.
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