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How to become a fashion fave with Gen Z in Q2

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    The highs and lows of Q3 for Gen Z

    Gen Z boasts a well-earned reputation for being a notoriously tricky demographic to get onyour side. So, how do you make students fall in love with your brand?...

    Fashion is a top priority for Gen Z who, despite rising costs, are set to spend a whopping £700 million in the coming months. That’s 25% more than any other generation, with a focus on daily-use products like trainers, hoodies and coats—the everyday student staples.

    But what motivates their fashion purchasing decisions? Which items are Gen Z favourites? How can you engage this traditionally difficult generation? All of these answers and more can be found in the UNiDAYS Q2 Student Insight Report, which is packed with actionable insights to help your fashion brand get trending with Gen Z.

    The often confusing and sometimes unique motivations of Gen Z can quickly become missed opportunities for brands that don’t have a solid grasp of the student calendar, so let’s dive deeper into what makes students tick in Q2.

    Why fashion matters in the Q2 calendar

    This period is the definition of make or break for students: as the academic year culminates with coursework deadlines and exam season, Gen Z are on the cusp of the long-awaited summer holidays. So, throughout Q2, the opportunity for fashion brands is one you certainly don’t wouldn’t want to miss.

    From April, students will be securing leisurewear for studying and relaxing in preparation for their final exams, before buying formalwear for graduation ceremonies and celebrations becomes the top priority. As May closes out and June rolls in, the focus will shift towards summer wardrobe planning for festivals, holidays, Euro 2024 and more.

    In other words, Q2 is a rollercoaster for students, but throughout the period, there are certain areas where Gen Z stand out:

    • 40% of all UNiDAYS engagements with sunglasses take place
    • 84% of students say they’re planning to purchase casualwear
    • Showstopping Grad Ball outfits are a MUST
    For Gen Z, their love for trainers is unwavering. On average, they spend 21% more on fresh footwear than their older counterparts and they’re snapping them up at speed, too.

    Students are also spurring growth in luxury fashion. Despite restricted budgets, their appetite for premium brands is showing year-on-year growth, up 26% from 2021. Luxe is creeping back in and Gen Z are willing to spend big on their fashion faves. Sounds like an opportunity to us.

    Fashion is the financial focus 

    Despite the cost of living crisis forcing students to operate with a tighter budget than ever, Gen Z aren’t stifled by financial concerns when it comes to fashion—they’ll still dress to impress and are spending more on clothing and accessories than any other generation:

    • 87% are planning to make fashion purchases in the coming months
    • 84% of students will buy leisurewear in Q2
    • Over the first half of 2024 UNiDAYS members will outspend other generations by 25% on average
    The youngest consumer generation aren’t willing to sacrifice on looking their best and their total expenditure is set to exceed £700 million over the next 6 months. They are ready to spend big, so aligning your brand with their values during this crucial period of their lives could set you up for lifetime loyalty with this notoriously difficult-to-reach generation.

    What’s the hot destination for the digital generation?

    They’re the digital natives, so it’s no surprise their favourite spot for fashion inspiration is online. But where exactly are they heading and what can you do to help seal the deal?

    • 55% say TikTok is their go-to for fashion finds
    • 61% say a student discount is a key deciding factor when considering a purchase
    • Half of Gen Z wait for a student discount before moving their wishlist to checkout

    Unlike older consumers, who generally prefer in-store shopping or online searches to find new fashion, Gen Z are running up serious screen time. While they’re exploring their favourite online channels, like TikTok, Instagram and Pinterest, they’ll be on the lookout for specific types of content:

    • Over two-thirds of Gen Z think influencers are living up to their name by producing the most influential types of content
    • Almost half believe ‘outfit of the day’ (OOTD) and ‘get ready with me’ (GRWM) formats from lesser-known creators are highly persuasive
    So, they’re keen to explore both ends of the social content spectrum—aspirational, influencer-led videos and unpolished, non-influencer clips that feel personable and relatable.

    Secure your spot in the wardrobe rotation

    Gen Z are the trendy ones, so it’s understandable that fashion takes priority even if, financially, times are tougher than usual. The seasonality of the student calendar means there are plenty of opportunities fashion brands should be seizing, but if only there were actionable insights somewhere…

    Oh wait, there are! The UNiDAYS Q2 Student Insight Report is loaded with everything you need on your fashion brand’s Gen Z checklist, including how young people are feeling, which purchases they’re eyeing up, what their motivations are and so much more.

    Ensure your brand is at the forefront of Gen Z minds by downloading the report, or partner with UNiDAYS to unlock lifetime loyalty from our verified audience of over 29 million verified students.


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