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Captivating Gen Z: Unleashing the Power of AI and Short-form Video in Digital Marketing

In the dynamic realm of digital marketing, a key development is the evolving relationship between small businesses and Gen Z consumers. Gen Z, those born between the mid-1990s and early 2010s, hold a significant $360 billion in global spending power. Every forward-thinking small business aims to engage with this lucrative market. However, Gen Z is not your typical consumer group – their digital upbringing has shaped unique shopping behaviors and expectations that are reshaping the digital marketing landscape. Small businesses need to consider how to engage these informed, hyper-connected, and purpose-driven young consumers. Traditional marketing tactics are insufficient. Gen Z spends over two hours daily on social media, with preferences for platforms like YouTube, TikTok, and Instagram, and they are heavily influenced by their peers. This indicates that short-form videos and influencer marketing are essential to capture their attention. Businesses invest considerable time each week in creating compelling content. Here, generative AI tools like Bard and Runway become invaluable. These tools can analyze content patterns and influencer performance to generate fresh copy and videos, reducing the time to create content that resonates with Gen Z. Meta has introduced generative AI ad tools that automate ad text creation, potentially saving content creators over five hours per week. This is an attractive proposition for budget-conscious and time-limited small businesses. The launch of Custom GPTs by OpenAI is a significant milestone as it focuses on personalization and immediacy – aspects that Gen Z consumers expect. Small businesses can now design their AI chatbots to provide personalized customer experiences without a hefty budget or complex coding skills. These chatbots can handle multiple languages and complex queries, offering engaging customer service and valuable insights into consumer behavior. Considering that 63% of Gen Z uses ad blockers, standalone paid ads are less effective. Businesses must think creatively, employing AI in immersive marketing strategies. For instance, Tommy Hilfiger's AI-driven campaigns let customers design items that could become actual products, demonstrating how small businesses can use AI for audience engagement and product development. Sustainability is another crucial factor for Gen Z, significantly influencing their purchasing decisions. Services like Stitch Fix use AI for product customization, showing their commitment to sustainable practices. Predictions show that the AI marketing sector could grow to $78.8 billion by 2030, indicating that embracing AI is rapidly becoming a necessity. AI enables marketers to move beyond manual data analysis and campaign optimization, focusing on strategic planning and creative innovation. Another growth area is social media advertising for franchise recruitment, shifting from traditional franchise expos to digital platforms. Targeted social media ads provide exclusive leads, 24/7 and remote lead generation with precision and efficiency, proving to be a strategic necessity for franchisors seeking growth and a competitive edge. In conclusion, small businesses and marketers must recognize AI's pivotal role in shaping digital marketing's future. With Gen Z setting new trends, there's a significant move towards personalized, sustainable, and immersive experiences. Leveraging advanced tools and techniques ensures digital marketing not only remains relevant but also pioneers new frontiers in consumer engagement. Links:

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