Gen Z in South Africa - 80% would pay more for brands with a positive impact

Accounting for one third of the global population, Generation Z have a collective disposable income expected to reach $33 trillion over the next decade. Brands cannot afford to ignore this generation; in fact, the future of businesses depends on them. But what shapes this generation, and what do they expect from brands?

This blog is based on proprietary quantitative research with 1,002 consumers (400 Gen Z, 201 Gen Y, 202 Gen X and 199 baby boomers) in South Africa.

Gen Z is an activist generation, a trait which comes to the fore in their expectations towards brands. In South Africa, they value brands that care about their own values as consumers (78%) and are authentic (75%) and inclusive (e.g., embracing all people regardless of race, sex or religion) (74%). In fact, 83% of Gen Z in South Africa believes that brands should help people live a better life.

This desire to tackle social issues is also reflected in Gen Z’s purchase decisions. Gen Z in South Africa are willing to pay more for brands that are black- or female-owned (55% and 48%) and use inclusive practices (77%). They would also pay more for brands that try to have a positive impact on society (82%) and run their business in a sustainable way (78%).

Joeri Van den Bergh, NextGen expert at InSites Consulting, explains why brands should take note of this new insight into Gen Z: “This is a very important generation that will bring about change in society, not only because they want to, but because they have the skills to do so. Gen Z is much more vocal than its predecessors, but it is also a vulnerable generation, growing up in challenging times. They have an enormous need for guidance, especially from brands.” 45% of Gen Z in South Africa feels stressed, which is mostly related to financial worries (58%), studies or job (54%), or family situation (45%). This is unsurprising, given the current level of unemployment amongst young South Africans.

Despite this, there is an opportunity for brands to collaborate with this woke generation, on their terms: Gen Z in South Africa feels it is acceptable for social-media sites and brands to use personal data to develop better products and services (71%) and service consumers better (71%). Meanwhile, 51% is willing to exchange some personal data for free services, discounts, or goodies.

Van den Bergh concludes: “The role of brands is more versatile than ever: as life coaches, as drivers of change and innovation, and as a means for Gen Z to express themselves. More than ever, brands should stand for something meaningful and put that into practice.”

Want to explore how your brand can connect with this woke consumer? Discover what our Gen Z research toolbox and expert power can do for your brand!

Ready for the Zoomers - Gen Z report

Ready for the Zoomers?

Gen Z are the digitally native generation: social-media-literate, always-on and hyper-informed. With many Gen Zers coming of age during the pandemic, the past two years put a mark on their lives and outlook on the future. In this report, we shed a light on what makes Gen Z different from the generations before them and what they expect from brands.

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