Bonus material: How to design the perfect email [infographic]

Generation Z is the cohort born anywhere between 1993 and 2000, depending on who you speak to. Most people will accept that Gen Z is certainly covered by those born in the mid-90s onwards. They tend to be very comfortable with technology, having grown up alongside modern computing and mobile phones.

Does email have a place in modern life?

Email is one of those technologies that might have been assumed to be going the way of the fax machine, entirely supplanted by new technology that has made it obsolete. After all, who needs a fax machine, with its need for paper, a dedicated landline and the space-occupying bulk of a stand-alone machine, when the same result can be achieved with a broadband-connected computer?

Yes, it does!

Fortunately, email has been absorbed into modern technology and most people need to have an email address for one reason or another, from high school onwards. Schools use email addresses to allow and monitor online activity undertaken as part of classes, while universities and colleges issue (often permanent) email addresses to their students as this gives them a certain cachet with prospective employers.

Wide-spread uses

Emails are widely used in everyday life too. Many websites require email addresses before you can register to use their services, so online shopping, job hunting, and even playing games all require an email address to be listed. Gig economy work – which is massively on the increase at the moment – is usually managed, sourced and submitted via email at some point in the process.

The answer

So, is email relevant for Gen Z?

The long answer is yes, but with some caveats. Gen-Zers will most likely have an email address that they are permanently logged into, and that they check at least once a week. However, with their life-long exposure to social media and the internet, they are more likely to be quite fussy about the content they curate and the emails they read in full. Most will very likely only ever be ‘previewed’ rather than properly opened and read in detail.

Emails designed to attract the attention of Generation Z by email marketing services need to highlight their passions and need to be short but impactful, above-the-fold display only. Marketing communications to this generation is probably best funnelled through social media networks that cater to that age group, Snapchat, Instagram and Kik to name just a few, as well as through the other, more established, networks like Facebook and Twitter.