Lessons taken from youth to approach your brand and branding

This is a short insight about what are we are learning from having the opportunity to constantly work and communicate with young people.

Creative Nomads

2/26/20243 min read

As communicators and brand specialists we also work as trainers for non-formal education. We have also been involved in the field of youth work for over two decades, and for the last eight years we have been a part of strategic team for communications, branding and creativity at The Public Institution Young Dragons (Ljubljana, Slovenia, EU).

There is a lot of talk and observations about the younger generations, especially Gen. Z, at the moment. (Btw, let us just mention that Generation Alpha is currently between the age of 0 and 14.) Funny enough, nobody really has the one-stop solution on how to ‘crack’ communicating with Gen. Z beyond modern approaches that would fit the aspirations of Gen. Z. We might assign this twirl of the unknown to the rapid change that technology, the pandemic and the state of the world have subjected us to just (not so) recently. But the reason doesn’t really matter. The fact is - we really don’t know.

But we can listen. We can also admit, that we really don’t know. But we are willing to learn. In fact, this is exactly what we have to do. We shouldn’t forget about the natural ageing of our customers. If they haven’t been already, Gen. Z, will at some point become a person you will be talking to about your business. Through your products, services or job positions, hm, on both sides - not just you as being an employer, but you, as being their employee.

On one hand, we might even be a little late. It seems that these generation is creating and building a parallel world of their own. A world where they are in charge in their own way.

At Creative Nomads we are often inspired by their beliefs, their willingness to do something and their hopes. They remind us that life is to be lived. What they need is our guidance, direction, and in viable terms, lots of work for free and sometimes we need to help them to crash to the ground as well. Like crashing an Airbus in a flight simulator to show them that they can get up and rise and shine again.

Ok, let’s move these thoughts forward.

If you work with or for the young people, or you want to attract more young people to be engaged with your brand, try to involve them in every step of your process, as much as possible.

We think this is a necessity if you want to connect better with young people. In order to give yourself a chance to be understood, to appeal or to be accepted as a brand in their eyes and hearts. Which is fair. We should all collaborate all the time.

Here is a few hints you might find useful to include in your branding process when considering different generations,

  1. Give young people a space and a voice in your brand.

  2. Involve and engage more young professionals in communication teams.

  3. Give suggestions what they can do and open yourself to vulnerability to be rejected, all over again.

  4. Make time to explore. Full stop.

  5. Consistency, again, and again, and again. Consistency helps to keep people around.

  6. Clarity, again, and again, and again. There is no point losing time in trying to figure out what you are actually trying to tell me. Or want from me. Or what, exactly?

Gen. Z is for us, both - super easy and super hard to work with and to work for. But once they get you, once you give them the open hands, once they feel that you trust them then you might stand a chance. But be prepared that they might leave the next day. And it is not because of you, but because of the next shiny, intriguing, better option that just appeared around the corner some nanosecond ago. And that is perfectly ok. The ones who stay will do that because they want to not because you tell them they should.

There is so much to talk about this topic we are for sure we are going to come back to it at some point. In conclusion let us just share a few keywords that popped-up in while writing this,

  • Big picture

  • Learning by doing

  • Peer - to - peer

  • Word of mouth

  • Flow and fluidity

At Creative Nomads we see brands as alive organisms. They are ecosystems. We need to understand Gen. Z(+) and there is such a vast potential to onboard them as for us imagining our future lies out there with them.