Gen Z prefers traditional media outlets over millennial-targeted ones like BuzzFeed and HuffPost

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Gen Z prefers traditional media outlets over millennial-targeted ones like BuzzFeed and HuffPost
Gen Z prefers traditional media outlets over millennial-targeted ones like BuzzFeed and HuffPost

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Something to mull this week: Brands and publishers have been obsessing forever over how to reach millennials, but a new study by The Atlantic’s creative marketing group Atlantic Re:think, Comscore, and Harvard College Consulting Group should challenge their thinking on people 18-24. The study has big implications for media and brands as they look for their next generation of users and customers.

The key findings:

  • Gen Z prefers old media. Millennial media is not a fit for Gen Z, with respondents reporting lower favorability scores for millennial-targeted news outlets versus established news outlets. In fact, 48% of Gen Z prefer titles like Time and The New Yorker versus 20% who favored newer ones like BuzzFeed and Cheddar.
  • They're less brand-loyal and expect brands to be more socially responsible than millennials do. 61% are more likely to buy brands that have spokespeople who are diverse rather than spokespeople who look like them, compared to 52% of millennials.
  • They like brick and mortar: 41% said a physical store encouraged them to try new brands, versus an e-commerce site (18%).
  • Out of 60 brands, only two get more love from Gen Z than millennials: YouTube and Apple.
  • They’re less concerned about privacy, at least for now. 42% say they try to share as little as possible, compared to 54% of millennials.

Gen Z will demand more of the brands they buy and companies they work for, but Gina Bulla of Atlantic Re:think, who led the study, managed to find a silver lining.

“Part of it is good news," she said. "They haven’t made set-in-steel brand preferences. There is a lot of opportunity to grow that love.”

-- Lucia

Here’s what else we’ve been up to this week.

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Feel free to send tips or thoughts to me at

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