While millennials have been in the spotlight for years, their successors, Generation Z, are beginning to enter the workforce and, consequently, the formal economy. The purchasing power of Generation Z is estimated to be between $29 billion and $143 billion, which is a small part of what’s new in the economy. It is time to start serving Generation Z.
Given the money this new generation controls, any restaurant interested in success would do well to consider what Gen Z wants in a dining experience. While it may be tempting to think of them as a younger subset of millennials, Gen Z made up of people born between the mid-1990s and about 2010, is markedly different from their predecessors in many ways, including what they are looking for in the restaurant. Want to tap into Gen Z‘s buying power in your restaurant? Use these tactics to start serving Gen Z right:
- Offer a socially responsible restaurant experience
- Maintain an active presence on social media
- Update your menu
- Offer fast and reliable service
- Offer a casual space
1. Provide a socially responsible dining experience
For Gen Z, dining out is not just about eating but about the experience. Whether it’s in the form of a lively atmosphere (bars/arcades are popular for a reason) or the food itself, eating out is a unique experience.
However, an underlying characteristic that Gen Z are looking for in their dining experience is social and environmental responsibility. They don’t want just any restaurant experience; they want an experience that matches their desire to have a positive impact on the environment.
By investing in socially and environmentally responsible measures such as sustainable food waste management, emerging technologies, food donations or even offering unique seasonal dishes, you will be able to attract this highly sought-after generation. An easy way to get on the path to a more sustainable and responsible restaurant? Use technology that reduces your daily waste.
Opting for a kitchen display can help you reduce your carbon footprint by sending orders directly to the kitchen without wasting paper or inefficiencies. Taking orders on an iPad also saves paper and is much faster.
2. Maintain an active presence on social networks
Social networks such as Instagram and Facebook have a huge influence on Gen Z’s choices of new restaurants to try. From reviews to photos of food and drink, influencers play an important role in the world of Generation Z. This means that social media is one of the main ways to achieve this goal, and you should use social proof as an ally.
You don’t need a huge marketing budget to increase your social engagements. You can start building your presence by leveraging user-generated content (with their permission!), reviews, creating blog posts, and being active on various social platforms.
According to Business Insider, Gen Z is most active on Instagram, YouTube, Snapchat and Facebook. If this is a market you want to target, make sure you are actively engaged on these platforms.
3. Update your menu
Generation Z not only has different preferences when it comes to social media and dining experiences, but they also have a different palate from their predecessors! Some of the things that stand out are Gen Z’s preference for healthy options, smaller dishes and affordable prices.
By understanding their tastes and preferences, you will be able to adapt your current offering to something more appealing to this new generation. Like millennials, Gen Z is also a health-conscious generation and is attracted to restaurants that offer dishes that cater to this need.
The reality is that Gen Z wants organic and natural food. Having menu options that revolve around a healthy and sustainable lifestyle, such as non-GMO and organic ingredients, will likely make you more popular with this generation.
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