Wake up and smell the espresso, retailers.
Our research drops a truth bomb - 40% of UK and US students are already scoping out their essential buys, double the 20% who'll start shopping when the academic year kicks off.
Don't hit that snooze button - it's your Mad Men moment. Rally your creative and data dream team for a hype strategy sesh. Students are ready for your epic campaigns and irresistible discounts. With a predicted spend of £4.5bn in the UK and $39.9bn in the US, sitting this one out isn't an option.
Got a "Nah, too soon" whisper in your ear? Let's zap it with a reality-check.
Partnering with UNiDAYS, mobile network VOXI fired up an awareness-focused video series for the Gen Z crowd ahead of the academic year. The content? A showdown of students from rival universities, each engaging in unique challenges, all while highlighting VOXI's Endless Social Media package.
We helped VOXI grab Gen Z eyeballs during a crucial discovery phase, amplifying their brand buzz. Flaunting VOXI’s USP - a flexible, SIM-only contract with unlimited social media - was bait they couldn't resist.
VOXI saw a whopping 307% sales uplift, a 57% boost in engagement and an 11.8% conversion rate. That's the power of early targeting, tailored messaging and product alignment.
Now, assuming you're all fired up (how can you not be?), let's dive into the nitty-gritty of where and how students are scouting for their needs this back-to-campus season.
97% of Gen Z say social media is their top source of shopping inspiration. Time to serve some FOMO, crafting a killer social media strategy to stop the scroll and capture students’ attention.
Gen Z has an 8-second filter for content that's not worth their while. They want to see authenticity from brands - think raw, DIY aesthetics over picture-perfect visuals.
Aligning with influencers who are legit Gen Z magnets is another smart move - those who keep it 100 with their fan base. And don't underestimate the power of peer reviews - 82% of Gen Z said their online shopping decisions are heavily swayed by fellow Gen Zers' feedback.
When it comes to brick-and-mortar, the game isn’t over. 73% of Gen Z get their thrill from finding fresh product drops in-store, which supports our Back to Campus research. They're splitting their shopping between online and IRL, and they want “well-curated store experiences, focused on a limited number of products.” Add to that, 47% of U.S. Gen Z whip out their phones for some on-spot detective work on products right in the aisles.
Tailor your in-store experience, curate that "must-have" product selection, and integrate an on-point mobile interface for in-store product research. Like Zara's retail app, which lets students scan product QR codes in-store for instant product details, reviews, and availability. Plus, the QR code lets them track purchases, manage in-store returns, and collect online orders. It's a seamless shopping experience that nails the back-to-campus sales game.
Our 2023 Back to Campus Report unravels students' cart plans, furnishing you with details to cook up product campaigns and discounts they'll go bananas for. But we've whipped up a quick sneak peek. Here's what students are stoked to bag in 2023:
While curating your back-to-campus campaigns, remember: students dig quality, and deals. In fact, discounts are the number one factor across all categories - a testament to their cost-conscious approach. Mastermind next-level discount strategies for your flagship products and flash them before the students.
The countdown has begun - time to take action. We've helped brands like The Fragrance Shop engineer student-focused strategies, leading to a 124% revenue spike and a 43% surge in daily engagements.
Key to this was spotlighting their generous student discount. Want a slice of that success? With UNiDAYS, strategize your student discounts, ignite their loyalty, and secure your place in Gen Z's buying journey. The window to make an impact is now - let's transform student interest into sales together. Become a partner.
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