Swiss Virtual Expo near Gen Z and Gen Alfa

GEN Z GEN ALFA – Digital and multi-sensory channels have become fundamental for young people when it comes to shopping. The Gen Z (that is, the ones born since 1997 and 2012) and the even younger Gen Alpha (that is, the ones born since 2011 and 2020) are at the head of the change of the purchasing market, which is increasingly directed towards experience and digitalization. According to Pambianco, with the research “The Evolution of Consumer Engagement of Tomorrow” the students of the MAFED (Master in Fashion, Experience & Design Management of SDA Bocconi), in collaboration with Salesforce, investigated new trends in purchasing and consumption. Fundamental survey for companies if they want to attract the preferences of younger people.

The physical store as a sensory experience

The physical store is starting to become an experiential hub to engage customers is no longer just a sales channel. The ability to buy online no longer makes it necessary to have to buy physically, but you can not deny the value of bringing customers into the store. The experience of the store then becomes the decisive element that distinguishes it from the online purchase: seeing the products in person, the experienced staff to have advice and in general an engaging experience is all added value.

This creates the sensory need to give a voice to the brand, a real “sound identity”. Augmented reality, artificial intelligence and corporate chatboxes come into play, all tools that create voice-based stimuli and must become a foregone conclusion at every stage of the purchase.

New watchwords: sustainability, community and gaming

The research has highlighted keywords that suggest companies how to adapt to be in line with the purchase expectations of the younger generation. Among these, sustainability stands out, as we noted in the article on second-hand goods, published here. If before it was a “nice to have”, now it is a real “must”, a value that young people expect that companies already have in their offer.

Another key word is community, fundamental to create a sense of belonging to the brand and make it become an experience itself. The idea follows that of gaming, which young people already know, and provides an upscale to move to a higher community category.

The research highlighted the importance of the virtual world and the Metaverse, which for the Alpha generation is now the norm. Brands are expected to enter this digital universe – as is already the case at Swiss Virtual Expo – in order to create awareness among young people and dialogue with them.

Still according to the research, the companies would not yet be well aligned and attuned to the new generations, but they would be taking a good path. However, the Gen Z and the Alpha generation have a very low attention threshold and, therefore, need speed and efficiency to become essential brands for young consumers.

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