In preparing for this year’s customer experience event with the Emplifi community, we had conversations with each of our guest keynote speakers. This is the first in a multi-part series that will be published in the weeks leading up to Emplifi Summit ’22.
Timothy Armoo is the founder of Fanbytes, a company he started as a university student to help brands like Nike, Samsung, and Deliveroo engage with Gen Z through influencers. He will be delivering a guest keynote at Emplifi Summit ’22.
Emplifi met with Timo over the summer to ask a few questions about his experience and insight for marketing to Gen Z.
What’s an unforgettable experience you recall having with a brand?
The first time I used Monzo for mobile banking, I thought, “Wow, this is magic!” Everything just worked seamlessly with the app. It was a completely different experience from the legacy bank.
What inspired you to focus on Gen Z?
Before Fanbytes, I had started a business that opened my eyes to social media and how Gen Z was moving the dial on causes, on brand purchases, and on making things cool. I realized there is power in learning how to influence this generation. For example, Duolingo has become a strong brand as it embraces a Gen Z mindset. When I started Fanbytes as a 21-year-old, I understood the value of engaging this audience.
Where does this influence come from, given that much of Gen Z may be too young to realize their full purchasing power yet?
Gen Z has some purchase power through their parents, but they have an even bigger voice in media and commerce. Over time, we’ve seen entrepreneurial Gen Z’ers starting to make money through Etsy stores, on Shopify, and by doing remote work. They learn online, make things cool, create FOMO, and convince older consumers to buy the goods they endorse.
How do you advise marketers who want to reach Gen Z?
Practitioners often feel that they need to get the silver bullet to make Gen Z fall in love with their brands. I find it’s more important to experiment with your content and completely humanize your brand. We’ve grown up with the phone as our main way of seeing the world. The bar to creating content that will engage young audiences is lower than you might expect.
Also, I tell people that Gen Z can be quite forgiving. We tend to think about cancel culture, and that maybe it applies even more to this young generation. But they understand that behind any brand is a human being. If you get something wrong, admit it – and you’ll find this audience is willing to come back.