Wondering where your brand should go next in the vast sea of social media platforms? Have a look at where Gen Z is hanging out.
Making up 35% of the global population, with more than $143 billion in spending power, these mobile-first consumers are venturing into new “third places,” including in-game concerts on Fortnite or talent shows on Instagram Live, according to Zebra IQ’s latest State of Gen Z report.
Here are some lesser known platforms that are growing in popularity and generating big dollars, both for the apps themselves and young content creators:
Genies is the world’s first avatar agency and a rival to Bitmoji. Genies represents a list of top talent in the digital world, such as Jennifer Lopez, Justin Bieber and Rihanna. Through the creative production of digital avatars, Genies allows talent to earn revenue in collaboration with brands without physical presentation for content production. Some brand partnerships include Gucci, New Balance and the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA).
Step into the world of mobile multiplayer gaming with Bunch. Funded by investor General Catalyst Partners and gaming brand Electronic Arts, Bunch creates a way for friends to connect over video chat while online gaming. Supporting titles like Minecraft, Fortnite and Flappy Bird, Bunch allows players to sync up and game together.
Acquired by Squarespace earlier this year and co-founded by Andy McCune, Unfold is a storytelling platform that lets users create engaging and polished stories. With more than 1 billion stories already made by users, brands can set up specific colors, custom fonts and logos into the app to publish directly to the web.
As social media videos become more popular, Lomotif is another for music video remixing. With more than 50-plus million users worldwide, Lomotif provides music for individual expression through its large database. Artists such as Alicia Keys, Miguel and Luh Kel have run campaigns on the platform.
Triller, a social video and entertainment platform, is one of TikTok’s biggest rivals. Agencies are now seeing that brands are repurposing content on apps like Triller. The company has hired TikTok stars Josh Richards as chief strategy officer and Griffin Johnson and Noah Beck as advisors to help lead their team.
Discord is a chat room-like app that makes it easy to talk with users every day and hang out virtually. The app recently branched out from its original focus on gaming to include broader topics, including entertainment, art and education. The platform is growing quickly, securing $100 million in funding in June and recently adding two major C-suite executives: CMO Tesa Aragones, formerly CMO of VSCO, and Clint Smith as its first-ever chief legal officer.
Face-to-face social networking is popular now more than ever due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Houseparty allows up to eight people at a time to video chat in a virtual room. Users receive a notification when friends open the app, and they can float between different rooms. Users can invite others to play games such as Trivia, Quick Draw and Heads Up!, which has made its way into monetization with The Ellen Degeneres Show.
In addition to the platforms mentioned above, it is worth noting that Gen Z is also thriving in the ecommerce space, such as with the following instances:
- Esports team 100 Thieves, founded by former OpTic Gaming Call of Duty captain Matthew “Nadeshot” Haag, has won major esports championships and sold out more than a dozen apparel launches.
- Global gaming platform GOAT connects streetwear buyers and sellers while using YouTube influencer marketing, minimizing fake apparel through authentication.
- App MSCHF conducts social experimentation through viral product drops twice a month. It also launched a game called Finger on the App, where people try to win a prize of up to $25,000 by literally keeping a finger on the screen. The final prize is determined by all of the players who are knocked out of the game.