Survey: Gen Z consumers are skeptical about most businesses

This ascendant, demanding cadre seeks authentic social responsibility from the companies it patronizes, but transparency and consistency are paramount. Here’s how to win their trust.

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Gen Z is coming of age in a radically new world defined by instant access to information, polarized politics and a social media-powered desire for validation.

While Gen Z is experiencing boundless creative possibilities, they are demanding more of themselves, more of society and more of business than has any previous generation.

According to a new national survey by BBMG and GlobeScan, by a 5-to-1 ratio, the leading edge of Gen Z (ages 18–22) does not trust business to act in the best interests of society, and nearly one in four cannot name a single brand they consider to be purposeful.

‘Commitment, action, follow-through, and transparency’

Though that may sound discouraging to brands and corporations trying to win the loyalty and respect of this ascending generation, the flipside of that skepticism is an eagerness to champion organizations that show courage on issues that matter, hold space for Gen Z to have their voices heard and validated, welcome all people (especially those who have often been marginalized), and support their individual growth and career aspirations.

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