The Drum Awards for Marketing EMEA - Awards Show

-d -h -min -sec

Gen Z Marketing Millennials

In-N-Out, Sephora and Six Flags bring GenZers out the most, reveals Foursquare study


By Bennett Bennett, Staff writer

August 15, 2018 | 4 min read

GenZers have been revealed to be 23% more likely to visit shopping malls than the average consumer, according to a report from location technology platform Foursquare and agency partner Carat.

Gen Z Foursquare

A Foursquare study revealed that GenZers are bucking trends that Millennials had set in their prime / Foursquare

The report seemed to conclude that the upwardly adulting generation of people born between 1997 and 2003 have bucked trends that millennials had set in their time. As millennials have seemed to emphasize shopping via mobile and online, Gen Zers have embraced the brick and mortar space. They’re 38% more likely to visit outlet malls, and overindex in shopping at Urban Outfitters (139% more likely) and Forever 21 (134%) in the triple digits.

But it’s not as if brick and mortar spaces didn’t adjust for the ‘digital natives’. Those stores, as well as Uniqlo, Zara and Sephora, have found ways to bring AR, self-service and mobile in-store shopping to their respective user bases. 47% of Gen Z consumers use their mobile phone while shopping to enhance their experience, the study revealed, and stores have been creating ways to accommodate.

Another finding from Foursquare and Carat: while millennials have skewed towards healthier chains like Chop’t, Just Salad, and Juice Generation, GenZers were more likely to visit fast food restaurants than the average consumer, by almost 20%, going to the likes of LA staple In-n-Out Burger (111%), Shake Shack (102%) and Chipotle (93%) much more frequently than their older counterparts.

Frozen yogurt joints seem to be a favorite of GenZers, as they’re 82% more likely to visit. Even though a small number of GenZers say they visit fast food spots regularly, and 16% consider themselves passionate about fast food, those numbers account to over 30% more interest from the rising generation than on average.

As they eat greasier foods at a higher clip, they’ve also seem to work out less than older generations. At least, not at cycling or spin studios, where they under-index by 38%, or at Pilates or yoga studios, also expensive options for this group in the 15-21 age bracket.

They’re more likely to play freely (and cheaply) as they’re 9% more likely to take their fitness to the basketball court. Overall, the study showed that they’re 27% more likely than the average consumer to play sports.

A third bucked trend amongst this group: GenZers spend a lot of quality time offline. The study revealed that this group is 50% more likely to attend theme parks such as Six Flags, where they over-index by a massive 186%. Bowling, attending the opera, going to bookstores and aquariums all also index high for Gen Z consumption.

Overall, the study showed that although these young adults have been looked at as drawn to what’s behind screens alone, they take the opportunity to be in a good career and find their enjoyment seriously. As they’ll account for over $143bn in direct spending power by 2020, look for more brands to integrate their digital potential to help draw more from this group offline.

Ipalibo Da-Wariboko, associate director of strategy at Carat US, said: “Gen Z is a generation conscious of their future. Brands should speak to aspiration and connect brand purpose to their long-term aspiration when possible. This will allow Gen Z-ers to view the brand as both attentive and supportive, a critical balance when establishing brand familiarity and relevance among this generation.

"Gen Z also craves personalization, it is important that brands support the personal flair of Gen Z-ers and provide opportunities for customization that go beyond off-the-shelf products and services.”

Ariel Segal, Foursquare head of insights, added: "While Millennials and Gen Z are similar in certain regards, the differences between these groups are wider than might be assumed, and brands would be wise to tailor their strategies for each group accordingly.”

Gen Z Marketing Millennials

More from Gen Z

View all


Industry insights

View all
Add your own content +