Gazing into the future is no easy feat, and while a crystal ball is absent from our toolkit, we can engage in some informed speculation about the marketing landscape in 2024. Drawing upon two decades of experience as a global marketer in the tech industry, particularly witnessing the ascent of Millennials, here are some visionary insights for 2024 and beyond.
Community Exploration for Gen Z
Despite the expected decline in the efficiency of paid social ads, social channels remain pivotal for Gen Z (and to a lesser extent, Gen Y and Gen X) to discover communities aligned with their diverse identities and challenges. Issues spanning mental health, reproduction rights, environmental concerns, and work/life balance will continue to draw these generations to social platforms.
360º Information Retrieval for Gen Z
Gen Z exhibits a remarkable ability to seek information about products, companies, celebrities, and influencers from diverse sources. Their skepticism toward corporate messaging and business jargon underscores the importance of transparent, honest communication. Superficial gestures, like incorporating a rainbow in your logo during Pride month, are insufficient; engaging them in authentic conversations is key.
Content Reigns Supreme
In 2024 and beyond, content retains its throne as king and queen. Crafting a thoughtful, long-term content strategy is essential. Becoming a benevolent resource within your product space, even referencing competitors respectfully, fosters collaborative growth. Authenticity and a genuine commitment to doing good are rewarded by an audience that values sincerity.
Practicality of Gen Z
While Gen Z expresses concern for global issues, their practical nature often leads them to favor consumerist brands for immediate benefits. Brands have an opportunity to leverage their inclination toward doing good by combating waste, aligning with the generation’s values.
AI’s Dual Role: Anxiety and Opportunity
The ascent of powerful AI-driven tools creates both anxiety about relevance and an opportunity for enhanced efficiency. Strategically, AI can be employed to refine value propositions and positioning statements. However, the creative process, particularly nuanced tasks like brainstorming and sketching, still relies on human artistry.
Ubiquitous Integration of AI by Companies
Companies will integrate AI extensively to streamline operations, enhance efficiency, and project a cutting-edge image. By 2025-26, those maintaining an “organic” creative expression will stand out, akin to how “non AI-generated” becomes the new quality benchmark.
Return of Human Curation as a Luxury
Human curation stages a comeback as a luxury, especially for premium brands and subscriptions. Exclusive human curation becomes a differentiator, providing a personalized touch in a tech-dominated landscape.
Revival of the ’90s Era
The ’90s revival continues, capturing the interest of Gen Z as they discover an era they haven’t lived in. Nostalgia for analog, acoustic, and physical aspects persists, reflecting the digital native generation’s fascination with the past.
Rethinking the Use of “Authentic”
With every brand laying claim to authenticity, the term risks losing its impact. A shift away from loudly proclaiming authenticity in external communication becomes imperative. Genuine, ethical, and honest practices should be integral, avoiding the trap of appearing insincere in a sea of similar declarations.
As we embark on this journey into the future, what are your predictions for marketing trends in 2024 and beyond?