IS GENERATION Z’S CONSUMER BEHAVIOR REVOLUTIONARY, OR REBORN? A QUALITATIVE COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS USING GENERATIONAL MARKETING

Open Access
Author:
Mc Bride, Colleen Mary
Area of Honors:
Advertising/Public Relations
Degree:
Bachelor of Arts
Document Type:
Thesis
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Heather Shoenberger, Thesis Supervisor
  • S. Shyam Sundar, Honors Advisor
Keywords:
  • Generation Z
  • Generational Marketing
  • Consumer Behavior
Abstract:
The U.S. is home to six recorded generations, the youngest being Generation Z. Born into a world of technology, Gen Z is turning the heads of advertisers and marketers for their digital behaviors unseen in previous generations. Using generational marketing as a backbone to this research, this study explores how unique Generation Z is by analyzing the values, characteristics and consumer behaviors of the last four generations - beginning with the Silent Generation - and comparing results to those of Gen Z. Generational trends are analyzed via a comparative analysis of the top ten values from each generation that uncovers the existence of a generational cycle of values, suggesting that consumer behavior continues to be reborn throughout the ages.  This research reveals that Generation Z shares several qualities with previous generations. Using these insights, this study examines top advertising campaigns from the last four generations and shows which aspects of each piece would resonate with Gen Z today.