Marketing to Gen Z

Gen Z is flipping the wedding industry on its head, and you need to understand them inside and out to better attract and serve them. Keep reading to learn facts about this generation, along with helpful tips to build rapport and connect with these couples.

Get to know Gen Z

Gen Z is proving to be a force for change, and we should all be inspired by the way they’re reimagining traditions. As the most diverse generation in history, there’s a lot more to this generation than meets the eye. Continue reading below to learn about the different preferences, priorities, and ways of celebration that Gen Z values most, and how you can tailor your marketing strategies to make them your next customer.

Entering core marrying age

They’re here! Born between 1996-2015, the oldest members of this generation are starting to get married. And even those that aren’t are still starting to plan! 78% have already taken at least one action related to wedding planning.

Born and raised on technology

They’ve never known a time without easy access to technology. According to The Knot 2024 Real Weddings Study, 29% researched wedding vendors before getting engaged.

Believe weddings are worth the cost

Gen Z recognizes weddings are expensive, but the majority believe they will be worth the investment.

The most diverse generation

Racial and gender identity is important to them and cultural expression will be a must in their celebrations.

Prefer video-first platforms

They consume twice as much video content as millennials.

Care about social causes

They are more likely to buy from a company that supports a cause they care about.

The key to connecting with Gen Z is to understand their motivations and authentically cater your marketing towards them. Show diversity on your website and your social media posts, share the causes you’re passionate about on your website, social media and even in your signature in your email, embrace technology, and film short-form videos of yourself to appeal to this audience.

10 Tips for Marketing to Gen Z:

Be responsive

Gen Z has a high expectation for how fast it takes companies to respond. So, provide several ways for them to contact you and respond quickly to start your relationship off on the right foot.

Pro tip: Respond to all leads quickly and stay at the top of their inbox for 30 days. In your first response, ask them what their preferred communication method is, and don’t be surprised if texting is the answer.

Practice authenticity and transparency

Gen Z values authenticity and can easily see through companies pandering to them. So, keep your marketing simple and personal so they’ll see the person behind the brand.

Pro tip: Remember, authenticity builds trust. According to the same study, two out of three couples said a vendor helped calm their nerves while wedding planning.

Embrace mobile-first and personalized experiences

This generation is most likely viewing your marketing materials from their phones, so design your website and channel experiences with that in mind. It’s important to create an integrated experience for your customers no matter where they first encounter your brand. The Knot 2024 Real Weddings Study found that couples spend an average of seven hours per week planning. Much of that time is spent online (91%). 

Pro tip: Keep your emails short and avoid sending big attachments (trust us, they won’t read them!)

Sell your value

Gen Z wants to invest, but they need to be convinced of the value. We know that they deem weddings worth the cost, so the next step will be convincing them that you and your business are worthy of investing in versus someone else.

Pro tip: They value quality products and services and will rely on reviews to make buying decisions. This is a great opportunity to request that your couples leave video reviews!

Showcase your philanthropic side

If your company supports a social cause, highlight the cause and all you do for it in your marketing materials and on your website, social media channels and Storefronts.

Pro tip: Think about donating in the couple’s name to your cause if they book you.

Get active on social media

Did you know 76% of all couples followed wedding vendors on social media? Social media is a powerful tool that allows you to engage with your audience. Each platform achieves different things (for example, Facebook can help you reach Gen Z’s parents whereas Instagram is great for posting fun video content) so have a presence on each to yield the most engagement.

Pro tip: Pay attention to your social media analytics. See what’s working and what’s not, and make adjustments often to engage and keep Gen Z interested in your brand.

Yes, even TikTok

TikTok is a great platform to build awareness because it champions authentic and personal connection through video. While wedding planning website and apps like The Knot and WeddingWire are still the top resource couples use for planning, 48% of Gen Z couples are using TikTok. So, don’t be afraid to step in front of the camera to share more about your business through personality-driven content.

Pro tip: Create TikToks that give advice and are informational.

Amp up the “fun”

Gen Z couples describe their style as “fun,” so connect with couples through videos and photos that show how fun interacting with you and your products and services is. Share fun ideas you have seen over the years on your social media, email and website.

Pro tip: Again, don’t force it! Remember, with Gen Z, authenticity builds trust.

Market to their parents

62% of parents to Gen Z couples are paying for or chipping in significantly for the big day. So, on top of making your marketing inclusive to this generation, make sure that you can get buy-in from their Gen X and elder Millennial parents.

Pro tip: Go the extra mile by writing an FAQ for parents on your website and creating a blog about how parents are involved in wedding planning.

Show that you can make a statement

Gen Z wants their day to be remembered through statement moments and embrace opportunities to surprise and delight guests. So when you’re selling prospects and onboarding clients, make sure to highlight everything you can do to bring the “wow” factor. Share ideas and photos of past couples who made grand entrances or exits and surprised their guests with unique experiences.

Pro tip: Being a valuable resource will help you gain trust, build rapport and book more Gen Z couples.

What couples really care about for their wedding

*According to nearly 10,000 respondents for The Knot 2024 Real Weddings Study.

Top 5 considerations

What’s this mean for you?

The market is ripe for wedding content creators and multimedia vendors (e.g. photographers and videographers) who are looking to segment out their offerings with additional package tiers. Each business should also consider content creation as part of its marketing and social strategy, given the opportunity. Content creators are an overall market currently valued at $250 billion. By 2027, it is projected to be an industry worth $480 billion, according to Goldman Sachs.

Gen Z terms you should know by now

Not knowing how to use these terms is cheugy, a word that created the great divide between millennials and Gen Z in 2020. A pejorative and slang label for those stuck in the 2010s, “cheugy” has been directed towards those who are “uncool” or “trying too hard,” calling out everything from Golden Goose sneakers to skinny jeans. For us, it is often used in the context of the 2010s wedding aesthetic: Floating bookshelves, lantern centerpieces, yards and yards of burlap, and wedding parties in matching silhouette and color palettes. Gen Z wants the opposite. Good thing you’re here. Read on for more popular terms used by Gen Z.

Main character energy (n.)

A figurative aura or radiance of confidence that a person has, acting as though they are the main character in their own story.
Example: The bride was giving main character energy with her three different outfit changes on wedding day.

Fumbling the bag (v.)

An action phrase and replacement for saying someone “dropped the ball.”
Example: The best man told us there’s a high possibility he’s fumbling the bag with the ring, which is why we’re handling it instead.

Girl math (n.)

A 2023 phrase for when someone justifies items as “free” or low-cost, though they’re the opposite. 

Example: Girl math is going couture for the wedding dress, knowing that while it costs $10,000 now, it could be triple the price someday.

Wedding Math (n.)

Piggybacking off “girl math,” the term wedding math is similar in sentiment. It’s used when a couple justifies something as “free” or low-cost while wedding planning, despite incurring expenses in the process. 

Example: Wedding math is knowing hundreds of guests will walk up to the frozen floral ice bar. That way, we can easily justify going over budget with this nice to have.

Rizz (n.)

An abbreviated and updated slang term for “charisma.” Also dubbed the Oxford Dictionary’s Word of the Year in 2023, the colloquial noun is also described as having “style, charm or attractiveness” or one’s “ability to attract a romantic or sexual partner.” 

Example: One of our bartenders has too much rizz, no wonder the line for the bar is so long.

Canon Event (n.)

According to The Knot Social Team, a canon event is a “life experience that is shared across generations that could be improved, but you let happen because they shape you.”

Example: My client had a canon event when her second cousin, who isn’t on the guest list, texted her, ‘I can’t WAIT for your wedding day.’

Beige Flag (n.)

An attribute that is neither good nor bad about your partner; simply put, it’s having a characteristic that is nice, boring or quirky without an edge; somewhere between green flag and red flag. 

Example: My beige flag is using emojis in my client presentations.

Go Off King/Queen (v.)

To tell someone, “Speak your truth.”

Example: The couple doesn’t drink, so they decided to splurge on a mocktail menu with a side of CBD-infused concoctions. The mixologist apparently told the groom, “Go off king.”

I Fear (v.)

Another popular and common way of saying, “I worry.”

Example: With the current timeline, we won’t have time to get through this shot list I fear.

Love to see it (n.)

Another way of saying, “Isn’t that amazing?”

Example: We did the walk-through last night and my client texted me later about the spiral taper candles. “Love to see it,” she wrote.

Mid (adj.)

An abbreviated way of saying “middle of the road”; not the best and certainly, not a compliment.

Example: With the budget presented, I worry that our options are limited and the design will be mid.

W (n.)

A win or victory.

Example: Running a successful and lauded 800-person event was our biggest W yet as a team.

Photos: Nikki Daskalakis Photography, Kir Tuben Photography

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