Millennials Rejoice! Brands Have a New Bae Named Gen Z

Great news, fellow millennials! After a decade of being called lazy, impatient, entitled idiots, there’s a new scapegoat in town: Gen Z.

Which also means there’s a new target for marketers. Thank God.

No generation has been more reviled and beloved than ours. Marketers looooved us. To be fair, with nearly 80 million of us, they sort of had to.

They studied our real estate habits, analyzed our Instagram photos and desperately tweeted the word “bae” at us. (If you forgot about that, sorry to remind you.)

Source: @BrandsSayingBae

They hurled avocados at us and designed everything in hues of salmon pink. They even changed the very nature of today’s office culture to “attract our talent.” (Let’s be real though, advertisers just wanted an excuse for ball pits.)



Meanwhile, baby boomers were, for some reason, totally obsessed with dumping on us.

They called us entitled for expecting jobs after graduation, and unrealistic for seeking careers that made us feel fulfilled. They couldn’t take us seriously in job interviews because of our vocal fry. And they told us our hopeless technology addiction was making us rude, awkward and unable to socialize. Idk about you, but every time I go visit my parents, they’re sitting on the couch like:


Source: The Learning Channel

Anyway. I’m not bitter. I’m just saying, between a-hole boomers and cloying marketers, the last few years have been “millennial this, millennial that, millennials, millennials, millennials.” Around 2015 it got to be a little much, so I installed a browser extension that ensured I’d never have to see the word millennial again. It automatically replaces the M word with a more accurate term.


Source: DallasNews. Answer: Yes.

We people born between the years of 1980 and 1995 — we never asked for this. But finally, there is some light at the end of the tunnel. We’re getting old now, with the upper reach of the “elder millennial” heading toward 40. We’re getting too old for people to give a shit about us anymore.

But thankfully, our Gen-Z siblings are finally coming of age.

You thought we were lazy idiots? Get ready for Gen Z. Born with silver iPhones in their hands, they’re guaranteed to be twice the demanding, lazy ingrates we ever were.

You thought it was bad when the market crashed and we complained about our student loans? Gen Z is skipping college altogether, doing what they love, documenting it with a GoPro and making a sponsored living off of it. They get paid — by Fortune 500 companies — to tweet. Just who do these entitled kids think they are?

Marketers, rejoice. Because according to Wikipedia (with some small adjustments): “as of April 2016, the Snake Person generation surpassed the population of Baby Boomers in the USA [. . .] However, the Post-Snake People were ahead of the Snake People in another Health and Human Services survey (69 million vs. 66 million).”

There’s a bajillion Gen-Zers out there, and given their tech-addicted nature, they’re easier to target than any other generation. Almost too easy. I mean, they unironically follow Logan Paul’s YouTube channel. The other day, my brother asked me if Radiohead was an app. Need I say more?

I needn’t, but I will. Ninety-two percent of them have some sort of social media footprint, and apparently they do not care about bargains. (This may be because they are literal 14-year-olds, but brands can only hope the trend continues.) These humans are less racist and sexist than ever before, which is good. They also care about social causes, so if you thought it was annoying that every commercial for the last three years has featured a protest, brace yourself.

Source: KnowYourMemes

Oh, and less than half of them say that their parents followed through with discipline (compared to 59 percent of millennials, who faced parental consequences for their actions). So they’re guaranteed to be little shits.

To truly replace us, all they need now is a catchy name (bc let’s face it, Gen Zers sounds stupid af). “Zolom’s Children” appears to be in the running. It sounds right at home with Snake People, and tbh I’m a little jealous.

Really tho, Gen Z, I throw no shade. Speaking from experience, I would never cast such blanket generalizations over an entire generation.

From the bottom of my world-weary millennial heart, I wish you all the best of luck with the marketers, the boomers and the crotchety millennials who are really pissed that you don’t know who N*SYNC is.

Godspeed, Children of Zolom, and may you never need a browser extension to block your own name.

Written by Chelsie Buckley on August 3, 2018


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Michael Buchanan says:

Gen X weighing in here: I too will be happy to see the millennial punching and counter punching cease; hopefully, giving way to a more open-minded, thoughtful set of generalizations. Even more so, I look forward to millennials proving naysayers wrong by realizing the most important measures of success: happiness, peace, and love.

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Chelsie Buckley