Millennials And Gen Z Prefer To Communicate With Others Digitally Rather Than In Person

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The Editors's picture

Research shows that millennials and Gen Z, the group following the millennials, would rather communicate with each other and companies and brands digitally rather than in person.

For these two generations, the smartphone has truly become an extension of their hands, according to a new survey.

With a constant digital connection at their fingertips, younger consumers expect a high threshold of digital convenience when seeking help from a company or a brand, the survey by LivePerson says.

When asked to rank how they typically try to get a question answered from a company or a brand, going to the app or website was the No. 1 choice, on average, across the globe.

With these younger consumers being attached to their phones, it isn't surprising that many of them place less importance on traditional social norms than older generations.

"We wanted to look more closely at the younger consumer audience, across different countries, and in more depth than the well-known trope that young people love their smartphones," Rurik Bradbury, global head of communications and research at LivePerson, said in the release. "What we see in the research data is the phone truly becoming an extension of the self, and the platforms and apps within it — digital life — occupying more than their offline interactions."

  • 41.6% consider it acceptable to text at a family dinner
  • 27.7% think it's acceptable to text in the middle of an in-person conversation.

Some of the key findings about millennials and Gen Z:

  • The phone is the new wallet: 61.8% of global consumers ages 18–34 would choose to leave their wallet at home instead of their phone.
  • Digital is the new IRL ("in real life"): Globally, a majority of Gen Z and Millennials (65%) communicate with each other more often digitally than in person.
  • The phone is now truly an extension of the self: 70.1% of Gen Z and Millennials across the globe sleep with their phone within arm's reach. And 65.5% bring their phone into the bathroom with them.
  • The future is 100% digital: A majority of Gen Z and Millennials around the world (69.5%) can imagine a future where 100% of purchases are done digitally/online.

Gen Z is the generation following the millennials.  Generation Z consists of those born in 1995 or later. This generation makes up 25.9% of the United States population, the largest percentage, and contribute $44 billion to the American economy. By 2020, they will account for one-third of the U.S. population.

There are several key differences between millennials and Gen Z. Gen Z lives in a world of continuous updates. Gen Z processes information faster than other generations thanks to apps like Snapchat and Vine. Thus their attention spans might be significantly lower than Millennials, according to author George Beall who writes here about eight key differences between millennials and Gen Z.

This survey was commissioned by LivePerson and conducted online by independent research firm Survata, which interviewed 4,013 global consumers ages 18–34 across six countries (US, UK, Australia, Germany, France, and Japan) between September 1, 2017, and September 11, 2017. Respondents received no cash compensation for their participation.

Digital lives of millennials and gen z

About LivePerson

LivePerson, Inc. is the leading provider of mobile and online messaging business solutions, enabling a meaningful connection between brands and consumers. LiveEngage, the Company's enterprise-class, cloud-based platform, empowers consumers to stop wasting time on hold with 1-800 numbers and, instead, message their favorite brands just as they do with friends and family.

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