4 Powerful Tips for Building a PR Strategy that Gen Z Will Love

Dec 11, 2023

Every year, more and more Gen Z’ers graduate from high school and college, join the workforce, and start adulting for real. They’re not just teenagers on TikTok anymore!

If your client wants to get Gen Z on board with their latest launch, you’ve got to revamp your existing PR strategies ASAP. While each new generation has different priorities, Gen Z has really set itself apart over the last few years.

It’s your job as a PR pro to consider their wants, needs, and values when you craft a new pitch or brainstorm your client’s next campaign. If you want to target Gen Z, you need to THINK like Gen Z — and I’ve got some winning tips to help you do it!

How To Build a PR Strategy That’s Gen-Z Ready

Your tried-and-true PR strategies might not work for the next generation. To get your PR strategy Gen Z-ready, here are four tactics to make sure you hit on all your client’s goals and all of Gen Z’s biggest concerns.

Meet Them Where They Are

Gen Z’ers were raised on the internet — they grew up right alongside platforms like Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube. When they want to find new products, research brands, or get advice, they get plugged in. They’re making most of their purchases online, but even if they want to go shopping in-store, they’ll probably do some internet research first. 

To appeal to Gen Z, your clients must get their online presence totally in check. This means:

  • Their social media pages need to have a strong sense of branding and aesthetic.
  • They must clearly communicate their message through their online channels.
  • Their websites and social media pages should be user-friendly for both desktop and mobile browsing.

Plus, to get your clients in front of Gen Z eyes, you need to make SEO your BFF. A solid SEO strategy — like using popular keywords and links to credible websites in your niche — can help you edge out competitors for top spots on search results pages.

Related: How to Use SEO and PR Together to Boost Your Clients' Campaigns

Get Influencers On Board!

Remember how everyone had the Rachel haircut from FRIENDS in the '90s? Well, Gen Z’ers are more likely to get their style inspo from their phone screen than the silver screen.

An endorsement from an influencer goes a long way in solidifying your client’s popularity with Gen Z. Social media stars like Charli & Dixie D’Amelio, Addison Rae, and Bella Poarch rule Gen Z. Even traditional celebrities like Olivia Rodrigo, Shawn Mendes, and Billie Eilish saw their careers truly take off due to social media!

Gen Z’ers don’t only have their eyes on big-name TikTokers with millions of followers, either. They’re also engaging with small creators who make niche content! You can target micro-influencers (1k - 100k followers), macro-influencers (100k - 1mil followers), or even go down to nano-influencers (less than 1k followers) to create really targeted content.

Of course, each group has its pros and cons, but what matters most is how Gen Z’ers in your niche interact with influencers producing niche content. Check out their engagement stats and start using influencers to your advantage!

You could also partner with influencers for a PR package unboxing or have them give your client’s product a quick shoutout. Other opportunities to work with influencers include:

  • promoting SponCon (sponsored content) like TikTok videos or Instagram Reels
  • bringing influencers into editorial campaigns for product launches
  • recruiting an influencer to host content on your page (like a video series or IG Stories takeover)

A popular, credible influencer endorsing your client’s product can change the game with Gen Z.

Authenticity and Consistency Are Key 

Gen Z cares. They’re plugged into the news and understand how their words and actions affect the world. Your clients need to show this same passion and commitment! 

People in the next generation want to support socially conscious brands. They want to see that you’re walking the walk before they make a purchase and aren’t afraid to cut out brands that change their tune on social issues. This goes for ALL levels of business — if your client posts about how much diversity and inclusion mean to them, that should be reflected in their editorial campaigns, partnerships, and staffing.

As a PR pro, you need to be thoughtful with your client’s social initiatives and align them with your client’s brand and message. Don’t promote charities and causes without thoroughly researching how they connect to your client and will impact your client’s audience. Empty promises and posts full of buzzwords that seem totally disconnected from a brand’s identity can turn Gen Z off your client! 

A years-long commitment to a cause is far more valuable than a one-off post. Always follow through with your initiatives — and show those efforts on social media!

Keep Them Engaged

Social media has dramatically decreased Gen Z’s attention span. Short, sweet, and interactive content is key!

For example:

  • Short, exciting videos posted to TikTok, Instagram Reels, and YouTube Shorts will grab attention as people scroll through their feeds. 
  • Microblogs or bright, colorful infographics on Instagram give viewers bite-sized, easy-to-skim snippets of content.
  • User-generated content (think: contests, giveaways, polls, and review roundups) can engage an existing customer base.

Leverage emerging tech to your advantage to create personalized content and experiences for Gen Z. One way to create interactive content is by creating AR filters on Instagram, TikTok, or Snapchat for users to engage with and post — bonus points if the filter is exclusive to an in-person public event or only available for a limited time!

As new social platforms pop up, jump on them quickly to establish trust with your audience there. You could even host contests or giveaways exclusive to users on that platform.

To create a PR strategy that connects with Gen Z’ers, you’ve got to understand the heart and values of the next generation. It’s all about making the most of the tech that Gen Z’ers already love while embracing and embodying the social causes that young people care about. In other words, to build a PR campaign strategy Gen Z will love, don’t just be good — do good.