It’s hard to believe that those cute little babies born in the late 1990s and early 2000s are growing up, but they are. Generation Z is beginning to graduate from college and go out into the world with jobs and real spending power. How this group of young people chooses to spend its money may well surprise you.


Generation Z values their education and understands just how much it costs to get one. This group feels the pain of educational loans but also understands it’s a worthwhile investment in their future. They know that continuing education is the key to improving their job prospects and keeping their skills relevant. They are willing and eager to embrace learning to further their career and enhance their salary.


Taking time to unplug (while blogging about the experience) is an important part of the Generation Z lifestyle. Because they are thoughtful consumers, this group will carefully research their adventures to make sure they have gotten plenty of five-star reviews and/or contribute to society in a meaningful way. For example, these young people might really embrace a beer crawl that also raises money for the local animal shelter or an art festival that provides art supplies to the local elementary school.


The young 20-year-olds love to double-dip. If they buy clothes, they want a portion of the proceeds to go towards enforcing child labor laws around the world. If they drink coffee, they want it to be from a fair-trade coffee plantation. If they go to a brewery, they want to hear local musicians and bring their dogs. The young people from Generation Z expect a two-fold reason to spend money. Their purchases also need to be Instagram-able.


Although not surprising that Generation Z is plugged in so universally, it is interesting to note that, for the most part, their technology must have a purpose. That purpose can be recreation, like a gaming system, but rather than becoming slaves to technology, this group makes technology work for them. If having an in-home digital assistant like Alexa makes their lives easier, this group will embrace it, but only after researching the system to make sure that it’s worthwhile. The same goes for digital fitness bands. They are not worn as fashion accessories. They are worn as a necessary part of a healthy lifestyle.

The growing monetary power of Generation Z means that many retailers need to change their marketing techniques to embrace what is important to this group. Every product needs to serve two purposes for this tech-savvy 20-somethings.